New study suggests a pancake, not a plume, formed the island chain
Like a pig at a luau, the Hawaiian Islands get roasted from below. But — like novice cooks — scientists aren’t sure what kind of heat it takes to really get things cooking.
A new analysis questions the prevailing theory that the islands were formed in sequence by volcanic activity as the Pacific plate drifted over a thin, hot plume rising from deep inside the Earth. Instead, a shallower pocket of abnormally hot rocks could be powering the vacation spot’s famous