A time exposure captures a nighttime view of a strombolian explosion in November 1968 from Cerro Negro volcano in Nicaragua. Learn more about plate tectonics and volcanoes in our online exhibition, The Dynamic Earth.

A time exposure captures a nighttime view of a strombolian explosion in November 1968 from Cerro Negro volcano in Nicaragua. Learn more about plate tectonics and volcanoes in our online exhibition, The Dynamic Earth.


Geology, Gems and Minerals
Online Exhibits

The Dynamic Earth: Explore the powerful geologic forces that shape our planet and the Solar System.

Online Tools


GeoGallery: Find gems, minerals, rocks, volcanoes, and meteorites by name, type or location in our interactive specimen gallery.

GeoGallery
Find gems, minerals, rocks, volcanoes, and meteorites by name, type or location in our interactive specimen gallery.


News


Complex Magmatic Processes Operating in Deep Volcanic Plumbing Systems

Complex Magmatic Processes Operating in Deep Volcanic Plumbing Systems
A recent analysis of decades-old volcanic cinder samples has provided a glimpse into the complex interplay among the volcanic processes of degassing, crystallization, and crustal assimilation during the rise of magma (molten rock) through Earth’s crust just prior to eruption.


Research and Collections


Department of Mineral Sciences

Department of Mineral Sciences
The Department of Mineral Sciences is dedicated to the study of minerals, gems, rocks, volcanoes, and meteorites: their origin and evolution.



Mineral Sciences Collections

Mineral Sciences Collections
The Department of Mineral Sciences maintains an online collections database that is searchable by name and location.



Global Volcanism Program

Global Volcanism Program
The Smithsonian’s Global Volcanism Program seeks better understanding of all volcanoes through documenting their eruptions — small as well as large — during the past 10,000 years.

Plan Your Visit
At the Museum explore the Janet Annenberg Hooker Hall of Geology, Gems, and Minerals. One of the largest renovations ever undertaken by the Smithsonian Institution, the geology hall opened in 1997. Nearly 3,500 gems, minerals, rocks, and meteorites from the Museum’s unparalleled collections are on display.

At the Museum explore the Janet Annenberg Hooker Hall of Geology, Gems, and Minerals. One of the largest renovations ever undertaken by the Smithsonian Institution, the geology hall opened in 1997. Nearly 3,500 gems, minerals, rocks, and meteorites from the Museum’s unparalleled collections are on display.
 
National Museum of Natural History