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Volcano Mystery Solved? Scientist Says He Knows Site Of 13th Century Eruption But Keeps Mum On Details

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A scientist claims to have found the volcano responsible for a mysterious and massive eruption in the 13th Century. This lithograph shows an 1883 eruption of Krakatoa in Indonesia. | Wikimedia

A massive volcano erupted somewhere on Earth in the 13th Century and was so powerful it caused a global cold spell. Until now, that's about all scientists have been able to say about the volcano mystery.

Now Dr. Franck Lavigne of Panthéon-Sorbonne University in France claims to have pinpointed the site of the volcano. But he says he won't reveal his findings until his research is published, according to Science News.

"We have new and solid evidence for the biggest volcanic eruption in 7,000 years," Dr. Lavigne reportedly said during the American Geophysical Union conference on volcanism and the atmosphere on June 14, 2012.

Some scientists have guessed the mystery volcano was in Indonesia, according to Wired. The country has about 130 active volcanoes.

How do we know the massive volcanic eruption took place? Scientists have found evidence of the grand explosion in ice cores with large amounts of sulfur from Greenland and Antarctica that date back to about 1258 A.D. Tree rings and other records show "the cold period" kicked off soon after--thus, researchers suggest the explosion and subsequent climate change are linked.

Dr. Lavigne said geochemical analysis of rocks from the mystery volcano he identified match the chemistry of the sulfur in the ice cores, according to United Press International.

According to UPI, Dr. Lavigne's research is slated for publication in an unspecified journal.

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