Is there a difference between volcanic islands and volcanic island arcs?

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dont worry its quite simple. Volcanic islands as im sure you know are so because of the way they form. Volcanoes would usually be present at plate boundaries where the tectonic plates are diverging but there are special places where volcanic islands exist over the centre of tectonic plates away from the boundaries. This occurs because of something called "hotspots" where there is an area of particularly high heat energy for a long period of time beneath the crust in the mantle. This creates thermal plumes and the lighter magma rises up through the crust and out onto the sea floor creating sea mounts. These build up into the islands that eventually emerge at the surface. Over time the tectonic plates movement means that the volcanic island is moved away from the hotspot and a new volcanic island will form over the hotspot. This is what results in the island arcs such as that of the Hawaiin islands. Its just the group of islands that have formed over a hotspot so the one furthest away ... more
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