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Volcano grows new island, swallows up neighbor

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Posted at 6:42 AM, Mar 03, 2015
and last updated 2015-03-03 06:42:36-05

(CNN) — Magma and lava from a Japanese volcano is forming new geography in a remote part of the Pacific Ocean.

An eruption on the tiny volcanic island of Nishinoshima in November 2013 formed a small islet right next to it when molten lava cooled.

That islet has merged with its neighbor and continues to develop.

The newly formed island has grown to 2.46 square kilometers (.94 square miles), according to the Japanese coast guard, which sent an observation plane to the area this week.

The coast guard said it’s 52 times bigger than the iconic Tokyo Dome.

And it’s expected to get larger.

The volcano is erupting five to six times a minute, spewing out volcanic rock, the coast guard says.

The evolving land mass is 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) south of Tokyo.