|Animation of an eruption of a shield volcano. The volcano opens up to reveal a cross-section. Under pressure, the magma starts to rise and the volcano erupts. The molten magma is released as lava, which is highly fluid and flows down the gentle slopes of the volcano. The fluidity of the lava means that it flows a long distance, making the volcano low and flat, compared to the more conical structure of viscous-lava stratovolcanoes. The relative fluidity of the lava also means that eruptions tend to be less explosive, longer duration and more regular.