If I were to make a list of “Hazardous Work Environments” that one might choose to partake in scientific research, a portal to the molten mantle of our planet might be near the top of that list. Probably right below “cloned velociraptor nursery” and above “San Andreas nitroglycerine factory”.
This clip from BBC’s “Journey to the Center of the Planet” shows a suicidal brave volcanologist venturing to the edge of a 2000 foot lava lake in Africa’s Nyiragongo volcano to collect a sample. The lava from this volcano has been clocked at 60 mph. Less than a month after this video was shot, the volcano erupted and emptied all of that burning hot death in less than an hour.
I’ll stick to the biology and leave the liquid molten rivers of deadly lava to others.