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An aerial view of Kīlauea Volcano's summit taken on August 1. A section of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park's Crater Rim Drive and the road leading to the Kīlauea Overlook parking area are visible at lower right. HVO, Jaggar Museum, and the museum parking area are visible at far middle right. A down-dropped section of the caldera floor can be seen to the left of Halema‘uma‘u, a crater that continues to grow. On the caldera rim (upper right) light-colored ash deposits from explosions in May are stirred up by brisk winds, creating a dust cloud that's blown downwind. Photo taken Wednesday, August 1, 2018 courtesy of U.S. Geological Survey

Kilauea Eruption: Fissure 8 continues output, spillover from lava channel overnight

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports that earthquakes continue at Kilauea summit. At 2:24 pm, a magnitude 4.1 earthquake occurred in the summit caldera that produced a rockfall. Fissure 8 continues to erupt lava into the perched channel, sending flows to the ocean at Ahalanui and creating a large laze plume. The margin of the flow […]

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Volcano Watch: How long will Kīlauea Volcano’s lower East Rift Zone eruption continue?

“How long will it last?” is one of the most challenging questions asked about a volcanic eruption, including Kīlauea Volcano’s current lower East Rift Zone (LERZ) eruption.

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During this morning's overflight, the ocean entry laze plume was being blown offshore, allowing this fairly clear view (looking northeast) of the Pohoiki boat ramp at Isaac Hale Beach Park. Incandescent (glowing red) spots of lava can be seen within the flow field beyond the boat ramp. HVO geologists also observed a few oozes of lava on or near the western flow margin, but all appeared weak as of 6:00 a.m. HST. Photo taken Thursday, August 2, 2018 courtesy of U.S. Geological Survey

Volcano Watch: Kilauea activity update for August 2, 2018

On Kīlauea Volcano’s lower East Rift Zone, lava continued to erupt primarily from fissure 8, feeding a channelized flow to the main ocean entry near Ahalanui Beach Park.

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Kilauea Eruption: Fissure 8 continues lava flow to ocean, meeting tonight in Volcano

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports earthquakes continue at Kilauea Summit. Fissure 8 continues to erupt sending lava flows into the ocean at Ahalanui; creating a large laze plume. State Highways reports no new cracks on Highway 11, but request motorists stay on the pavement and be alert for changes in roadway conditions between mile markers […]

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Lava has been about 500 feet from the Pohoiki Boat Ramp as seen in this photo taken Monday, July 30, 2018. Photo courtesy of Hawaii County Fire Department

Kilauea Eruption: Lava flow and laze plumes continue in Lower East Rift Zone

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports earthquakes continue at the Kilauea Summit. Fissure 8 continues to erupt sending lava flows into the ocean at Ahalanui; creating a large laze plume. As of last evening the Western edge of the flow had not advanced southward and remained approximately 500 feet from the Pohoiki Boat Ramp at Isaac […]

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The fissure 8 ocean entry and laze plume as they appeared at sunrise this morning. The Pohoiki boat ramp is visible just below the plume (slightly left of center). Photo taken Tuesday, July 31, 2018 courtesy of U.S. Geological Survey

Kilauea Eruption: lava flow and quakes continue, community meeting tonight in Pahoa

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports a 4.5 magnitude earthquake occurred at Kilauea Summit this morning at 12:30 a.m. No damage was reported. Earthquakes continue at Kilauea Summit and Fissure 8 continues to erupt into the channel sending lava flows into the ocean at Ahalanui, creating a large laze plume.

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During this morning's overflight, USGS scientists noted that the distal fissure 8 flow margin had not advanced overnight, and remained less than 175 m (0.1 mi) from the Pohoiki boat ramp in Isaac Hale Park. But they also observed that lava along the western edge of the flow was fuming, so it could start oozing from that edge. Photo taken Monday, July 30, 2018 courtesy of U.S. Geological Survey

Kilauea Eruption: Lava flow continues in perched channel, quake activity ongoing at Kilauea summit

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports that earthquakes continue at Kilauea summit and fissure 8 continues to erupt lava into the perched channel, sending flows to the ocean at Ahalanui and creating a large laze plume. This morning, HVO field crews report low lava levels in the channel and no overflows. The margin of the flow […]

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When Kīlauea Volcano’s lower East Rift Zone first erupted on May 3, 2018, lava temperatures were about 2000 degrees Fahrenheit. As the eruption progressed, with fresher magma feeding the fissures, the erupted lava became progressively hotter, resulting in more fluid and far-reaching lava flows (May 21 shown here). Lava temperatures have now leveled out at 2070–2085 degrees Fahrenheit. These temperature measurements provide insight on what’s happening inside the volcano. USGS photo by C. Parcheta.

Volcano Watch: Geochemical detective work helps answer questions about Kīlauea’s ongoing eruption

“What’s happening inside the volcano?” is just one of many questions asked about Kīlauea’s ongoing lower East Rift Zone eruption. Looking at the geochemistry of erupted lava can help us answer these questions.

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This telephoto image shows dark fragments of molten and semi-solid lava being blasted upward and outward during a hydrovolcanic explosion at the Waikupanaha ocean entry west of Kalapana in April 2008. Similar explosions are occurring at Kīlauea Volcano's current lower East Rift Zone ocean entry. For more information, please see "Littoral hydrovolcanic explosions: a case study of lava–seawater interaction at Kilauea Volcano" (https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/vsc/file_mngr/file-186/Mattox and Mangan_hydrovolcanic explosions.pdf). USGS photo by M. Patrick.

Volcano Watch: The mixture of lava and seawater creates an explosive hazard

Since May 3, 2018, Kīlauea Volcano’s lower East Rift Zone eruption has destroyed more than 700 structures, covered more than 32 sq km (12.4 sq mi) of land with black lava, and added about 700 acres of new land to the island. Yet, remarkably, injuries had been few.

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Tour boat damage from lava explosion off the Puna coast Monday, July 16, 2018. Photo courtesy of DLNR

Twenty-three injured on tour boat hit with lava explosion Monday (July 16)

A 20-year-old woman has major leg trauma. The other passengers suffered burns and scrapes.

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Continued degassing from fumaroles at fissures on Kīlauea Volcano’s lower East Rift Zone produce native sulfur crystals when sulfur dioxide and hydrogen sulfide gases react and cool upon reaching the surface. The delicate sulfur crystals are 5-15 mm (0.2-0.6 in) long. USGS photos by A. Lerner, 2018.

Volcano Watch: Many forms of sulfur are found on Kīlauea Volcano

For many Hawaii residents, interactions with Kīlauea Volcano’s eruptions is through vog—a hazy mixture of sulfur dioxide gas and sulfate particles. However, sulfur on Kīlauea is not limited to vog components.

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This image is from a temporary research camera positioned near Kapoho looking southwest. From left to right, one can see the eruptive fissures, with Fissure 15 on the far left, and Fissure 8 near the center. Webcam image taken Monday, July 9, 2018 courtesy of U.S. Geological Survey

Kilauea Eruption: Lava flow continues, higher SO2 levels may occur Monday night (July 9)

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports that Fissure 8 continues to be very active and is feeding a lava channel to the ocean at Kapoho. The flow is producing a broad ocean entry along the shoreline and continues to expand into Kapoho Beach Lots and north of Four Corners intersection. There is no immediate threat at this […]

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Fissure 8 (lower right) and open lava channel leading to the northeast. Geologists noted small lava-level fluctuations in the open channel overnight, which indicates intermittent variations in lava discharge from fissure 8. An increase in lava levels was noted about 1.5 hours after the collapse-explosion event at the volcano's summit at 02:55 a.m. HST. Evidence of a couple of recent, short-lived channel overflows were observed early this morning, but they had not reached the edge of the flow field. The small steam plumes in distance mark locations of fissures that erupted in early May at the beginning of the ongoing eruption. Photo taken Sunday, July 8, 2018 courtesy of U.S. Geological Survey

Kilauea Eruption: Lava flow continues and is spreading in the Kapoho area Sunday (July 8)

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports that Fissure 8 continues to be very active and is feeding a lava channel to the ocean at Kapoho. The flow is producing a broad ocean entry along the shoreline and continues to expand into Kapoho Beach Lots and north of Four Corners intersection.

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The active lava lake within Halema‘uma‘u crater about 3 weeks before magma began to withdraw from beneath the crater. Visible in the middle left of the photo behind the plume, is the old Overlook parking area, closed since 2008. The parking area slumped into the crater by June 21. View is toward the southwest. USGS photo on April 13, 2018, by Lil DeSmither.

Volcano Watch: How does the current activity at Kīlauea caldera stack up against those of other volcanoes worldwide?

We are currently witnessing extraordinary events at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano.

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