Posted on: May 8, 2020 at 5:07 pm
Last updated: October 14, 2020 at 6:01 pm

We’ll probably never get tired of throwing things in lava. It’s something that’s almost certainly taken place since time immemorial, and although there’s no practical way to turn lava lakes or flows into insane trash incinerators, it’s certainly a lot of fun to watch people try.

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The latest victim of a fresh Hawaiian lava flow appears to be a GoPro camera, whose indestructibility is often touted by the company as a key selling point. Now, as reported by PetaPixel, one such camera appears to have withstood the 1,000°C (1,832°F) lava – a feat that few everyday objects manage to achieve.

Erik Storm, the lead guide of Kilauea EcoGuides, recently placed his GoPro down into a small crevasse to try and get some footage of the fiery madness. Lava then suddenly flowed out of the crack and engulfed his camera, which was in protective casing at the time.

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Watching the viscous lava consume his technical marvel, he assumed it was long gone – but no. The thickness of the flow meant that the camera wasn’t fully consumed, and was eventually partly expunged at the surface.

Smashing through the cooled rock and recovering his miniature beloved, Storm found that the SD card within it survived, and the camera continued to film during its hellish ordeal. You can check out the footage here.

Although the camera apparently doesn’t work as well as it once did, the fact that it didn’t get completely destroyed is truly remarkable. It’s likely that the plastic covering on the camera was resilient enough to take the brunt of the lava’s heat for the short time it was scorched. In this sense, Storm got lucky – but we wouldn’t recommend trying to repeat the endeavor unless you have some rather spectacularly good insurance.

Shared with permission from our friends at IFL Science.

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