LavaTalk: Explosion of lava at Kilauea summit due to rockfall Monday (Nov 28)
Posted on November 28, 2016.
Video captured by USGS/HVO webcam: At 11:59 a.m., a rockfall from the south wall of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater triggered a small explosive event in the summit lava lake. The explosion threw spatter (fragments of molten lava) onto the rim of the crater, mostly to the west of the former visitor overlook. This area has been closed to the public since 2008 due to ongoing volcanic hazards, including explosive events like the one that happened Monday, November 28, 2016. Video courtesy of USGS/HVO.
HVO scientists visited the rim of Halemaʻumaʻu this afternoon (11/28) to collect samples of tephra and check for equipment damage. This view, taken on the approach to the Halemaʻumaʻu, shows the tephra deposit on the crater rim. New spatter is seen as dark lumps scattered across the center of the image on top of older brown-colored Pele’s hair. The closed Halemaʻumaʻu overlook is in the background at right; HVO and the Jaggar Museum are on the caldera rim in the distance near upper left. Photo taken Monday, November 28, 2016 courtesy of USGS/HVO
This view shows the main body of the tephra deposit, which comprises the dark fragments scattered from the foreground to the web camera in the background (the HTcam thermal webcam). The rim of Halemaʻumaʻu is to the right; the closed overlook is behind the photographer. Photo taken Monday, November 28, 2016 courtesy of USGS/HVO
The larger spatter bombs bounced after hitting, leaving divots in the layer of Pele’s hair that blankets the area, as seen here. These bombs are the diameter of large dinner plates. Photo taken Monday, November 28, 2016 courtesy of USGS/HVO
The largest spatter bombs traveled the farthest, perhaps aided by momentum, landing on the trail between the Halemaʻumaʻu parking area and overlook. Upon landing, these bombs splatted to form complexly shaped bomb fragments connected by thick strands and masses of Pele’s hair. Photo taken Monday, November 28, 2016 courtesy of USGS/HVO
Only a relatively small amount of spatter reached the rim of Halemaʻumaʻu, compared to the thick, continuous layer of spatter seen here on the intermediate ledge midway between the lava lake and the Halemaʻumaʻu Crater rim. Photo taken Monday, November 28, 2016 courtesy of USGS/HVO