May 24, 2013 Kīlauea
Flows heading north of Puʻu ʻŌʻō, continued activity in Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater and on Peace Day flow
The Kahauale`a II flow began as a breakout on the east rim of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater on May 6, and has advanced northward towards the forest. Today, slowly moving pāhoehoe lobes (light colored flows in this image) were burning moss and lichen on older Puʻu ʻŌʻō ʻaʻā flows and approaching the forest boundary. Puʻu ʻŌʻō cone is obscured by thick clouds in this photo.
Left: HVO geologists use a laser rangefinder to measure the height of the shield and cone built up around the northeast lava lake, on the east rim of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater. The peak of the cone is now about 18 m (60 ft) above the former crater rim. Right: The spatter cone near the north rim of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater continues to produce pulsating gas jetting sounds. Compare this photo to one taken of the same cone on May 2 to see how much taller the cone has grown.
The small lava lake on the northeast rim of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater has been built into a small cone, with only a few small openings at the top. One of these small openings had sloshing lava near the surface.
Why did the lava tube cross the road? This image shows the Peace Day lava tube coming down the pali in Royal Gardens subdivision. The lava tube parallels Ali`i avenue, shown by the straight line of warm temperatures that represent asphalt heated in the sun. At the intersection of Ali`i avenue and Paradise street, the lava tube makes a sharp turn west and crosses the intersection, and then turns sharply again downslope (towards the right side of the image). This tube feeds lava to the ocean entry and breakouts on the coastal plain. There is no active lava on the surface in this image - the warm surface temperatures are due to heating by the underlying lava tube. Thermal images such as this help HVO geologists map the lava tube system.
May 6, 2013 Kīlauea
Satellite image shows active breakouts on flow field
This image was captured on Monday, May 6, by the Advanced Land Imager sensor aboard NASA's Earth Observing 1 satellite. Although this is a false-color image, the color map has been chosen to mimic what the human eye would expect to see. Bright red pixels depict areas of very high temperatures, and show active or very recently active lava flows. The vent for the current flow field is on the east flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. From the vent, lava is carried through a lava tube to the ocean entry at the coastline. Along the way, lava can break out from the tube, creating surface flows. Several areas of surface flows are visible in this image. Two small areas are on the pali in Royal Gardens subdivision. The largest is on the coastal plain, extending about 1.1 km (0.7 miles) out from the base of the pali. Several small hotspots are visible on the shoreline at the ocean entry, where lava exits the tube and spills into the water. Satellite images such as this help fill in observational gaps between field visits.
May 2, 2013 Kīlauea
Lava continues to enter the ocean at Kupapa`u Point
After a 12 km (7.5 mile) journey from the vent on Puʻu ʻŌʻō cone through a lava tube, lava pours into the ocean in narrow streams at one of the eastern entry points.
Another entry point has two larger lava streams entering the water. The lava fragments due to cooling and disruption by the battering surf, and some of these pieces float on the water's surface in front of the entry point (see lower left portion of photo).
April 20, 2013 Kīlauea
Kahaualeʻa flow front stalls, new overflow in Puʻu ʻŌʻō
Breakouts have diminished over the past few days on the Kahaualeʻa flow (heading northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō), and the flow front has not advanced significantly since April 8. Compare today's thermal image with that from the April 8 overflight. During today's flight, there were no active breakouts at the flow front.
A vigorous flow was erupted on the floor of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater starting early this morning from a cone near the north rim, but a smaller flow was also erupted from a spatter cone near the south rim around noon. This photo captures a burst of spatter from the southern cone as the small flow was erupted.
Lava erupted this morning from the cone near the north rim of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater, with a small portion of the flow emptying out onto the east spillway. This new flow brings the floor of the crater slightly closer to the north crater rim.
April 8, 2013 Kīlauea
Kahaualeʻa flow from Puʻu ʻŌʻō advancing northeast very slowly
The two active flows (Kahaualeʻa and Peace Day) are both fed from vents high on Puʻu ʻŌʻō cone. This view (looking southwest) shows Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater. In the foreground, a lava pond and small spots of orange glow mark the location of the vent for the Kahaualeʻa flow. Near the north rim of the crater (right) a steep spatter cone (see other photo from today) was producing loud gas jetting sounds.
Left: A closer look at the start of the lava tube on the Kahaualeʻa flow, near the rim of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater. See photo above for aerial view. Unfortunately a direct view of the lava stream was not available here. Right: This steep spatter cone near the north rim of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater was making loud gas jetting sounds, presumably due to gas forced through the small glowing holes near the top of the cone.
The Kahaualeʻa flow remains active, with the flow front today about 4.9 km (3 miles) northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. The flow is still on earlier Puʻu ʻŌʻō flows, but has been slowly approaching the edge of the forest.
Farther down the flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō a skylight on the Kahaualeʻa flow provided a view of the flowing lava stream in the lava tube.
Good weather provides clear views of the ocean entry at Kupapaʻu
Numerous ocean entry points were active today at Kupapaʻu, with a plume of discolored water drifting west.
Left: Another view of the ocean entry points and discolored water at Kupapaʻu. The thermal camera today showed that water surface temperatures were up 50 degrees Celsius (122 degrees Fahrenheit) a short distance out from the entry points. Just beyond the ocean entry, the light colored areas represent active breakouts. On the pali, fume marks the path of the lava tube. The bump on the horizon at the very left edge of the image is Puʻu ʻŌʻō, the site of the vent for these flows. Right: View looking northeast towards Kalapana from the ocean entry. The small white dots in the distance are houses in Kalapana Gardens subdivision.
March 19, 2013 Kīlauea
Kahaualeʻa Cone and the Kahaualeʻa flow
Kahaualeʻa Cone, shown here, has long been a small oasis in the midst of Puʻu ʻŌʻō lava. New lava from the active Kahaualeʻa flow has now surrounded the cone, which has also partly burned. Vent structures the episode 58, active from 2007 to 2011, are in the background just behind Kahaualeʻa. Puʻu ʻŌʻō is out of sight to the right.
March 15, 2013 Kīlauea
Flows northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō and views of the lava lake in Halemaʻumaʻu
This photo looks northeast and shows Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater. Recent activity has been focused around a few spatter cones on the crater floor. At the far edge of the crater, a small lava pond has been active and has been the source of flows extending northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. Those flows are visible at the top-center of the photo. Just below the horizon two small sources of smoke mark where the flow front is burning lichen and moss covering older ʻaʻā flows.
A closer look at the flow extending northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. Puʻu ʻŌʻō cone is at the right edge of the photo, and view is towards the northeast. In the foreground, two sources of fume mark the path of the lava tube supplying lava to the flow front. In the top-left, a few sources of smoke mark where the flow margin is burning moss and lichen on older flows. Today, the flow front was just over 4 km (2.5 miles) from the vent on Puʻu ʻŌʻō.
Left: South winds permitted clear views into the south portion of the Overlook crater, which is often obscured by thick fume. The bright orange area is the location where lava at the surface of the lake sinks back into the system, with spattering and degassing common in this area. A broad ledge of recently deposited lava occupies much of the south portion of the crater. Right: Spattering is common in the area where lava sinks back into the system, and this photo shows these processes are occurring in a small grotto. In the right portion of the photo, the ledge occupying much of the south part of the Overlook crater is visible. Parallel lines along the front face of this ledge might appear at first glance to be layering within the ledge, but are actually thin deposits of lava that mark recent levels of the lava lake, much like bathtub rings.
March 6, 2013 Kīlauea
Ocean entry and coastal plain breakouts remain active
The ocean entry near Kupapa`u Point remains active, with no major changes in appearance over the past few weeks. In this view, the two main entry points are visible, with a smaller third entry point (out of view) just beyond these.
Breakouts have been active recently in several locations on the coastal plain. The sluggish flows in this photo were about 1.6 km (1 mile) out from the base of the pali, with a more active patch of breakouts mauka of this location. In addition, several areas of breakouts were active very close to the shoreline and ocean entry. In this photo, one of the last remaining sections of uncovered roadway in Royal Gardens subdivision is visible in the brown patch (near the white fume) in the upper right portion of the image. This is Ali`i Avenue, on a steep section of the pali.
February 25, 2013 Kīlauea
Lava lake in Halemaʻumaʻu Overlook pit
The lava lake in Halemaʻumaʻu remains poised at a relatively high level within the Overlook pit. The lake level dropped over the weekend. Though rising again now, it has not yet reached last week's level.
Recently emplaced flows on Puʻu ʻŌʻō's spillway
Left: The "spillway"—Puʻu ʻŌʻō's eastern flank—has been buried by flows fed mostly from a spatter cone on the northeastern side of the crater floor. Most of the dark-colored lava in the foreground is new lava that has resurfaced the spillway. The fume to the left is the trace of the Peace Day tube, newly covered by crater overflows, currently carrying lava to the coast. The tube carrying lava to the northeast is not obvious, but extends toward the lower right side of the photo. Right: Some of the recent overflows at Puʻu ʻŌʻō traveled to the southeast. This photo shows those overflows, which comprise several dark-colored channelized flows.
Spatter cone on northwest side of Puʻu ʻŌʻō's crater floor
Left: There are currently four spatter cones on the floor of the Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater that have been the source of lava flows over the past several months. The one shown here is on the northwest side of the crater floor, close to the multiframe webcam shown on our website. The webcam, and an HVO geologist standing next to it, give a sense of scale for the spatter cone. The camera to the right of the person is the thermal camera on Puʻu ʻŌʻō shown on our website. Right: This is a closer look at the spatter cone on the northwest side of Puʻu ʻŌʻō's crater floor. The photo was taken from near the site of the webcam on the north rim of Puʻu ʻŌʻō.
Spatter cone on northeast side of Puʻu ʻŌʻō's crater floor
Left: This is another of the spatter cones on the floor of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. This one, on the northeast side of the crater floor, has long had an open top with a view of a small lava lake. Most of the overflows from Puʻu ʻŌʻō in the last few weeks have been fed from this spatter cone, successively piling up until the top of the spatter cone is now about level with the webcam on the north rim of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. Right: This is a steep aerial view of the small lava pond at the top of the spatter cone on the northeastern side of the crater floor. Lava in the pond flows directly into a lava tube which is supplying the active flow northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. The head of the tube, marked by fume, extends from the pond toward the left side of the photo.
Views of the Kahaualeʻa flow, northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō
Left: The flow traveling north from Puʻu ʻŌʻō, which we are informally calling the Kahaualeʻa flow, abuts the edge of episode 58 flows erupted during 2007–2008. The flow has also partially surrounded one of the few vestiges of greenery within the flow field—the forested top of the old Kahaualeʻa cone. Right: This is a view of the front of the Kahaualeʻa flow looking back toward Puʻu ʻŌʻō, where the flow originates.
Ocean entry near Kupapaʻu Point
Lava continues to enter the ocean near Kupapaʻu Point, with an entry point just inside the National Park (near left side of photo) and entry points just east of the Park boundary (near the center of the photo). Widely scattered patches of surface lava are also active inland from the ocean entry points. Puʻu ʻŌʻō is a low lump on the horizon near the top of the photo immediately to the right of the image's center line. The plume from the lava lake in Halemaʻumaʻu is visible in the background to the left of the image's center line.
February 18, 2013 Kīlauea
A time-lapse summary of the past two years of activity in Halemaʻumaʻu
This Quicktime movie shows exactly two years of lava lake activity in Halemaʻumaʻu Crater (Feb 11, 2011 to Feb 11, 2013) in one minute of time-lapse video, using images taken from a thermal camera perched on the rim of Halemaʻumaʻu. The lake is contained within a vent crater informally called the Overlook crater (because it is directly below the former visitor overlook), and the field of view of this camera encompasses most of the Overlook crater.
Soon after the sequence begins, the lava lake drains abruptly due to the March 5, 2011, Kamoamoa eruptive event on the east rift zone, which depressurized the magmatic system. Over the following six months, the lava lake slowly rises in the Overlook crater to its previous levels, interrupted by another draining event in early August 2011 (due to the August 3 draining of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater that again depressurized the system). As the lava lake rises in the Overlook crater, the fluctuating lava level builds a deep inner ledge. This ledge experiences unsteady growth through sporadic lake overflows, but portions of the ledge also frequently collapse back into the lake. In October 2012 the lake rose over several weeks and achieved the highest level recorded for the current summit eruption around October 26 (about 22 meters, or about 70 feet below the rim of the Overlook crater and floor of Halemaʻumaʻu crater). During periods of high lava level, the heating of the Overlook crater walls leads to more frequent crater wall collapses, which sometimes include the rim and enlarge the Overlook crater. This two-year time-lapse sequence shows the highly dynamic nature of the lava lake in Halemaʻumaʻu, and helps reveal the processes involved in long-term lava lake activity.