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Volcanic breccia

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About Volcanic brecciaHide

The term volcanic breccia is used as a general or field term applying to all coarse-grained rocks containing abundant (>10%) angular volcanic fragments.

Volcanic breccias are grouped into three major categories based upon process of fragmentation: autoclastic, pyroclastic, and epiclastic.

Autoclastic volcanic breccias result from internal frictional processes acting during movement of semisolid or solid lava; they include flow breccia and intrusion breccia. These are similar to tectonic breccias.

Pyroclastic breccia is produced by volcanic explosion and includes vulcanian breccia, pyroclastic flow breccia, and hydrovolcanic breccia.

Epiclastic volcanic breccias result from transportation of loose volcanic material by epigene geomorphic agents, or by gravity, and include laharic breccia, water-laid volcanic breccia, and volcanic talus breccia.

The rock types mentioned heretofore may also be designated by prefixing compositional terms as in basaltic block breccia and andesitic vulcanian breccia.


Synonyms: alloclastic breccia, lava breccia

Ref: AGI


Classification of Volcanic brecciaHide

Sub-divisions of Volcanic brecciaHide

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References for Volcanic brecciaHide

Reference List:
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Klaus K.E. Neuendorf, James P. Mehl, Jr., and Julia A. Jackson (Editors), 2017. Glossary of Geology. Fifth REVISED edition. American Geological Institute (abbreviated as AGI).
Fisher, R.V., 1961a. Proposed classification of volcaniclastic sediments and rocks. Geol. Soc. Amer. Bull. 72, 1409–1414.

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