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Lava might not be a fun novelty in places like Hawaii or Iceland, where residents have to occasionally deal with rivers of molten rock. But in the relatively geologically inactive planes of New York, it’s a cool DIY project being used to investigate the properties of lava flows while also getting kids interested in science. A trough of super-hot lava might be among the last things you’d expect to see when strolling around the campus at Syracuse University, but that’s just what you’d find a few times a year. The Lava Project is a collaboration between professor Bob Wysocki (an artist), and professor Jeff Karson (a geologist). The experiments are pitched as a unique blend of science and art, as researchers observe the properties of molten rock while younger onlookers toast marshmallows.