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Images and Chronology
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31 July 2010

More devastated forest and awesome views of ocean entry

Lava devastated more forest in the past few days as the finger of lava feeding the eastern ocean entry expanded slightly eastward.
This photograph shows the eastern ocean entry, which covered a small beach.
Left. Lava devastated more forest in the past few days as the finger of lava feeding the eastern ocean entry expanded slightly eastward.Right. This photograph shows the eastern ocean entry, which covered a small beach.
The western entry continued to add to its delta, with several small streams of lava battered by the waves.
The western entry continued to add to its delta, with several small streams of lava battered by the waves.

30 July 2010

Composite image showing the active flow front in Kalapana

This composite image merges a thermal image and normal photograph, and shows the active flow front in Kalapana.  Breakouts (shown by white/yellow areas) were present at the base of the pali (uppermost white/yellow areas), in several spots near the County viewing area, and on the fingers of lava feeding the two ocean entries.
This composite image merges a thermal image and normal photograph, and shows the active flow front in Kalapana. Breakouts (shown by white/yellow areas) were present at the base of the pali (uppermost white/yellow areas), in several spots near the County viewing area, and on the fingers of lava feeding the two ocean entries.

Various views of active flows on the coast and ocean entries

View looking south toward active flows on the coastal flats near Kalapana Gardens subdivision. The new flows entered the area from right center, crossing the end of Hwy 130, and burning through forest adjacent to the coast. The burned remains of trees and brush cover the surface of the new flows at the center of the image. After ponding in this area for several days, lava finally topped the fault scarp which was preventing flows from reaching the ocean.
View looking west at the eastern of the two new ocean entries. Lava has completely buried the beautiful pebbly beach that was in this spot. The western entry is in the background at upper left.
Left. View looking south toward active flows on the coastal flats near Kalapana Gardens subdivision. The new flows entered the area from right center, crossing the end of Hwy 130, and burning through forest adjacent to the coast. The burned remains of trees and brush cover the surface of the new flows at the center of the image. After ponding in this area for several days, lava finally topped the fault scarp which was preventing flows from reaching the ocean.Right. View looking west at the eastern of the two new ocean entries. Lava has completely buried the beautiful pebbly beach that was in this spot. The western entry is in the background at upper left.
View looking northeast, toward Kalapana Gardens, with the eastern of the two ocean entries in the foreground.
View looking south at the more vigorous western ocean entry. The fault scarp that prevented flows from reaching the ocean for several days crosses the photo in the foreground.
Left. View looking northeast, toward Kalapana Gardens, with the eastern of the two ocean entries in the foreground. Right. View looking south at the more vigorous western ocean entry. The fault scarp that prevented flows from reaching the ocean for several days crosses the photo in the foreground.

29 July 2010

A surge of lava that broke out and view of lava cascading down the sea cliff

A 1-meter-wide channel feeds a surge of lava that broke out from the inflating flow margin on the Hakuma horst, sending a fast-moving - but relatively small - flow through coconut palms towards the ocean.
View of lava cascading down the sea cliff onto the delta at the western ocean entry.
Left. A 1-meter-wide channel feeds a surge of lava that broke out from the inflating flow margin on the Hakuma horst, sending a fast-moving - but relatively small - flow through coconut palms towards the ocean.Right. View of lava cascading down the sea cliff onto the delta at the western ocean entry.

27 July 2010

Second finger of lava overtopped the Hakuma horst

In the past day a second finger of lava overtopped the Hakuma horst and pushed through thick vegetation towards the ocean.  The flow front was less than 20 meters from the sea cliff this morning.  Along the margins of this finger, lava triggered numerous small fires, sending thick smoke through the forest of hala trees and coconut palms.
The front of this small finger of lava was almost to the sea cliff this morning, and was burning through low brush along the coastline.
Left. In the past day a second finger of lava overtopped the Hakuma horst and pushed through thick vegetation towards the ocean. The flow front was less than 20 meters from the sea cliff this morning. Along the margins of this finger, lava triggered numerous small fires, sending thick smoke through the forest of hala trees and coconut palms.Right. The front of this small finger of lava was almost to the sea cliff this morning, and was burning through low brush along the coastline.
The flows that reached the ocean on July 25 continued to build a small delta today.
The flows that reached the ocean on July 25 continued to build a small delta today.

26 July 2010

Narrow finger reached the ocean and lava exiting the tube poured onto growing delta

A narrow finger of lava reached the ocean just after 2 pm yesterday.  By this afternoon the lava had built a small delta, barely visible through the thick steam plume.  Lava also remained active on the coastal plain, close to residences in Kalapana.
A narrow finger of lava reached the ocean just after 2 pm yesterday. By this afternoon the lava had built a small delta, barely visible through the thick steam plume. Lava also remained active on the coastal plain, close to residences in Kalapana.
Lava exited the tube at the sea cliff and poured out onto the growing delta.
The finger of lava that reached the ocean yesterday took out numerous trees on its path to the water.  This coconut palm was one of many burned and fallen.
Left. Lava exited the tube at the sea cliff and poured out onto the growing delta. Right. The finger of lava that reached the ocean yesterday took out numerous trees on its path to the water. This coconut palm was one of many burned and fallen.

24 July 2010

More active breakouts along Highway 137 and thick smoke from burning vegetation

More breakouts were active along Highway 137 today, with this lobe burning through a grove of ironwood trees before reaching the asphalt.
More breakouts were active along Highway 137 today, with this lobe burning through a grove of ironwood trees before reaching the asphalt.
The air was thick with smoke from burning vegetation and asphalt.  Flows here were crossing Highway 137 and moving slowly towards a residence.
View towards the south, showing the recent lava abutting the Hakuma horst, which is directing flows towards the east.  The fault scarp extends about 2 meters above the level of the lava here.
Left. The air was thick with smoke from burning vegetation and asphalt. Flows here were crossing Highway 137 and moving slowly towards a residence. Right. View towards the south, showing the recent lava abutting the Hakuma horst, which is directing flows towards the east. The fault scarp extends about 2 meters above the level of the lava here.

23 July 2010

Lava flow reached the north facing scarp and composite image showing the active flow front

Flows continued to be active along Hwy 137, inching closer towards houses in Kalapana.  This photo shows an inflated flow front that has ruptured, spilling out the fluid lava within the flow.
This composite image combines a thermal image with a normal photograph, and shows the active flow front in Kalapana.  The flow is abutting the raised ground of the Hakuma horst, which is diverting the flows to the east and bringing them closer to residences.
Left. Lava flows have reached the north facing scarp of the Hakuma horst (the vegetated segment roughly shaped like California), temporarily stopping flows toward the south, sending them along the scarp to the east and west. If the flows continue to inflate, they will overcome the topography of the horst and once again flow toward the ocean. Right. This composite image combines a thermal image with a normal photograph, and shows the active flow front in Kalapana. The flow is abutting the raised ground of the Hakuma horst, which is diverting the flows to the east and bringing them closer to residences.

22 July 2010

Flows continue to be active south of the Kalapana access road

Flows continue to be active south of the Kalapana access road, heading in a generally eastward direction.  These breakouts were active just a few hundred meters east of the County lava viewing area.
Scorched ground extended out beyond the flow margins, as the lava triggered small fires that consumed adjacent grass and underbrush.
Left. Flows continue to be active south of the Kalapana access road, heading in a generally eastward direction. These breakouts were active just a few hundred meters east of the County lava viewing area. Right. Scorched ground extended out beyond the flow margins, as the lava triggered small fires that consumed adjacent grass and underbrush.

20 July 2010

FLows continue to be active along Highway 137

Flows continued to be active along Hwy 137, inching closer towards houses in Kalapana.  This photo shows an inflated flow front that has ruptured, spilling out the fluid lava within the flow.
The advancing flows triggered many small fires, with underbrush burned up to a hundred meters ahead of the flow.
Left. Flows continued to be active along Hwy 137, inching closer towards houses in Kalapana. This photo shows an inflated flow front that has ruptured, spilling out the fluid lava within the flow. Right. The advancing flows triggered many small fires, with underbrush burned up to a hundred meters ahead of the flow.

17 July 2010

FLows reached Kalapana access road

Flows reached the Kalapana access road in the past day, and covered about 300 meters of asphalt.  The burning asphalt created a plume of thick, black smoke.
Flows were also active in kipukas north and south of the access road today, and were pushing through thick vegetation.
Left. Flows reached the Kalapana access road in the past day, and covered about 300 meters of asphalt. The burning asphalt created a plume of thick, black smoke. Right. Flows were also active in kipukas north and south of the access road today, and were pushing through thick vegetation.
This active lobe disregarded the fence and continued south on its way to the ocean.
This active lobe disregarded the fence and continued south on its way to the ocean.

14 July 2010

Thermal images showing the active flows coming down the pali and at Halema`uma`u

This image is a composite of a normal photograph and a thermal image, and shows the currently active flows coming down the pali towards the ocean.  The active flow areas are shown as white and yellow, while older, cooler flows are shown by purple hues.  The flows this morning were about 900 meters from the County viewing area, at the end of the Kalapana access road.
This thermal image shows the view of the Halema`uma`u vent from today's overflight.  The kidney-shaped lava pond, about 90 meters long, is deep within the vent cavity.  The mostly-crusted lava migrates from the north (right in this photo), where it upwells from depth, to the south, where is sinks back into the conduit.
Left. This image is a composite of a normal photograph and a thermal image, and shows the currently active flows coming down the pali towards the ocean. The active flow areas are shown as white and yellow, while older, cooler flows are shown by purple hues. The flows this morning were about 900 meters from the County viewing area, at the end of the Kalapana access road. Right. This thermal image shows the view of the Halema`uma`u vent from today's overflight. The kidney-shaped lava pond, about 90 meters long, is deep within the vent cavity. The mostly-crusted lava migrates from the north (right in this photo), where it upwells from depth, to the south, where is sinks back into the conduit.
Lava flows are once again nearing the County viewing area at the end of Highway 130. The flow front is about one kilometer (0.6 mi) away, burning small patches of vegetation in its path.
Geologist taking a sample from a recently formed skylight on the Quarry flow lava tube. Samples collected directly from the lava tube are usually the best samples for chemical analysis.
Left. Lava flows are once again nearing the County viewing area at the end of Highway 130. The flow front is about one kilometer (0.6 mi) away, burning small patches of vegetation in its path. Right. Geologist taking a sample from a recently formed skylight on the Quarry flow lava tube. Samples collected directly from the lava tube are usually the best samples for chemical analysis.

8 July 2010

Aerial photo looking directly into a skylight

An aerial photo looking directly into a skylight that formed in the last 24 hours. This skylight is located at the top of one of the rootless shields on the upper flow field.
Geologist changing the data card from the timelapse camera on the north rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō cone.
Left. An aerial photo looking directly into a skylight that formed in the last 24 hours. This skylight is located at the top of one of the rootless shields on the upper flow field.Right. Geologist changing the data card from the timelapse camera on the north rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō cone.

1 July 2010

Views of the TEB tube system and the rootless shield

View looking southeast along the fuming trace of the TEB tube system. The growing rootless shield field is in the background just above and to the left of center frame. The low, rounded shape of the shields-especially the shield in shadow to the left-are evident in this photo.
View looking the opposite direction (toward the northwest) with the rootless shields field crossing the image just above center. The low rounded shield shape is not apparent at this slightly steeper angle. The terminus of the active flows is just above the lower right side of the photo.
Left. View looking southeast along the fuming trace of the TEB tube system. The growing rootless shield field is in the background just above and to the left of center frame. The low, rounded shape of the shields-especially the shield in shadow to the left-are evident in this photo.Right. View looking the opposite direction (toward the northwest) with the rootless shields field crossing the image just above center. The low rounded shield shape is not apparent at this slightly steeper angle. The terminus of the active flows is just above the lower right side of the photo.
Rootless shields, when active, are often topped by a lava pond, as seen here.
Rootless shields grow both in breadth and height through the accumulation of repeated overflows from the summits of the shields. In this photo, a stream of lava is flowing southward down the flank of this emergent shield.
Left. Rootless shields, when active, are often topped by a lava pond, as seen here. Right. Rootless shields grow both in breadth and height through the accumulation of repeated overflows from the summits of the shields. In this photo, a stream of lava is flowing southward down the flank of this emergent shield.

21 June 2010

Activity at Pu`u `Ō `ō crater and the rootless shield

The recent activity within Pu`u `Ō `ō crater quieted over the past several days.  This photo shows the new, dark-colored lava that covered the crater floor. A new gas vent on the east wall of the crater (top left) also appeared over the couple of weeks.
The new gas vent on the east wall of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater opening up next to an older vent (the dark opening to the right of the new gas vent) that sealed shut in the past few months. The new vent has been incandescent at night for the past few days.
Left. The recent activity within Pu`u `Ō `ō crater quieted over the past several days. This photo shows the new, dark-colored lava that covered the crater floor. A new gas vent on the east wall of the crater (top left) also appeared over the couple of weeks.Right. The new gas vent on the east wall of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater opening up next to an older vent (the dark opening to the right of the new gas vent) that sealed shut in the past few months. The new vent has been incandescent at night for the past few days.
Activity on the active flow field has been dominated by rootless lava shield construction for the past several weeks. The main shield, seen here, is topped by a lava pond that feeds overflows down the sides of the shield. Successive overflows slowly build up the height of the shields. At the time of this photo, a second shield was also active out of sight to the right.
A close-up view of the top of the main rootless lava shield. The lava pond at the top of the shield is roughly 100 meters (yards) across.
Left. Activity on the active flow field has been dominated by rootless lava shield construction for the past several weeks. The main shield, seen here, is topped by a lava pond that feeds overflows down the sides of the shield. Successive overflows slowly build up the height of the shields. At the time of this photo, a second shield was also active out of sight to the right.Right. A close-up view of the top of the main rootless lava shield. The lava pond at the top of the shield is roughly 100 meters (yards) across.
This photo, taken at the northern base of the main rootless lava shield (the top of the previous photo), shows lava flowing down the flank of the shield.
This aerial view of the main rootless lava shield shows the low, domed shape of this type of flow field feature. Sometimes, the flank of a rootless shield will fail, suddenly releasing the lava stored within and feeding fast moving 'a'ā flows.
Left. This photo, taken at the northern base of the main rootless lava shield (the top of the previous photo), shows lava flowing down the flank of the shield.Right. This aerial view of the main rootless lava shield shows the low, domed shape of this type of flow field feature. Sometimes, the flank of a rootless shield will fail, suddenly releasing the lava stored within and feeding fast moving 'a'ā flows.

11 June 2010

Quicktime movie showing action within Pu`u `Ō `ō crater

This Quicktime movie shows video taken during today's field visit and overflight.  The first portion of the video is taken at the rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater, and shows the north vent feeding the lava pond.  The lava surface undulates due to rising gas bubbles, and a small overturn is triggered.  The second portion of the video shows an open stream of lava at the summit of one of the rootless shields on the Quarry flow.
This Quicktime movie shows video taken during today's field visit and overflight. The first portion of the video is taken at the rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater, and shows the north vent feeding the lava pond. The lava surface undulates due to rising gas bubbles, and a small overturn is triggered. The second portion of the video shows an open stream of lava at the summit of one of the rootless shields on the Quarry flow.

Aerial view of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater and a striking view of a breakout

Aerial view from above the north rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater. Most of the activity was in the center of the pond (lighter grey area), where one of the vents was actively spattering and small pieces of crust were overturning. The two cameras setup on the north rim of the crater are the Pu`u `Ō `ō Webcam (which can be viewed on our website), and the new time-lapse camera that was deployed today.
Another view of the lava pond in Pu`u `Ō `ō crater, taken from the southwest rim of the cone. The pond is approximately 75 meters below the visible section of the rim in the upper edge of the photograph.
Left. Aerial view from above the north rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater. Most of the activity was in the center of the pond (lighter grey area), where one of the vents was actively spattering and small pieces of crust were overturning. The two cameras setup on the north rim of the crater are the Pu`u `Ō `ō Webcam (which can be viewed on our website), and the new time-lapse camera that was deployed today. Right. Another view of the lava pond in Pu`u `Ō `ō crater, taken from the southwest rim of the cone. The pond is approximately 75 meters below the visible section of the rim in the upper edge of the photograph.
A striking view of a breakout atop one of the rootless shields on the Quarry flow. Lava is flowing from the breakout point near the bottom of the photo toward the top of the photo, where it reenters the lava tube and continues downslope.
A striking view of a breakout atop one of the rootless shields on the Quarry flow. Lava is flowing from the breakout point near the bottom of the photo toward the top of the photo, where it reenters the lava tube and continues downslope.

3 June 2010

Gas geochemists deploy a FTIR on Pu`u `Ō `ō crater

HVO gas geochemists deployed a FTIR spectrometer on the east rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater. The FTIR measures the composition of the East Wall vent gases by 'looking' through the plume at an infrared lamp (obscured by fume in this photo).
This photo was taken from the lamp on the other side of the plume. The FTIR is the small dark silhouette on the rim across the crater gap.
Left. HVO gas geochemists deployed a FTIR spectrometer on the east rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater. The FTIR measures the composition of the East Wall vent gases by "looking" through the plume at an infrared lamp (obscured by fume in this photo).Right. This photo was taken from the lamp on the other side of the plume. The FTIR is the small dark silhouette on the rim across the crater gap.
An aerial view of the new lava pond inside Pu`u `Ō `ō crater. The photo was taken from the southeast.
One of two small spatter cones that erupted through the crusted lava of a newly formed pond in Pu`u `Ō `ō. This cone is located at the base of the south wall of the crater.
Left. An aerial view of the new lava pond inside Pu`u `Ō `ō crater. The photo was taken from the southeast. Right. One of two small spatter cones that erupted through the crusted lava of a newly formed pond in Pu`u `Ō `ō. This cone is located at the base of the south wall of the crater.

Quicktime movie showing active lava pond within Pu`u `Ō `ō crater

This Quicktime movie shows the active lava pond within Pu`u `Ō `ō crater, imaged with a thermal camera.  The video is shown at x60 speed, and covers about 25 minutes.  Lava is being supplied to the crater from two vents, one visible in the upper right corner of the image and one out of view in the lower left.  Crustal foundering events, in which a section of the thin surface crust ruptures and sinks, exposing the hot interior of the pond, are common.  This view is towards the north.
This Quicktime movie shows the active lava pond within Pu`u `Ō `ō crater, imaged with a thermal camera. The video is shown at x60 speed, and covers about 25 minutes. Lava is being supplied to the crater from two vents, one visible in the upper right corner of the image and one out of view in the lower left. Crustal foundering events, in which a section of the thin surface crust ruptures and sinks, exposing the hot interior of the pond, are common. This view is towards the north.

Thermal images showing Pu`u `Ō `ō pond, a rootless lava shield, and a geologist sampling the lava from the interior of the rootless shield

This thermal image shows the lava pond within Pu`u `Ō `ō crater.  The view is towards the southeast.  The pond is fed from two upwelling sources, one on the south margin of the pond and one on the north margin.
'Rootless' lava shields are those built over a lava tube, as opposed to those which develop over the vent.  This rootless shield was built over the past week, and hosted a lava pond at its summit.  Overflows from the pond cascaded down the steep flanks.  A short lava flow, in the lower right portion of the image, originates from the flank and represents lava seeping out from the shield interior.
Left. This thermal image shows the lava pond within Pu`u `Ō `ō crater. The view is towards the southeast. The pond is fed from two upwelling sources, one on the south margin of the pond and one on the north margin. Right. "Rootless" lava shields are those built over a lava tube, as opposed to those which develop over the vent. This rootless shield was built over the past week, and hosted a lava pond at its summit. Overflows from the pond cascaded down the steep flanks. A short lava flow, in the lower right portion of the image, originates from the flank and represents lava seeping out from the shield interior.
This image shows an HVO geologist sampling the lava that was seeping out of the interior of the rootless shield.  The lava was placed in a bucket of water to quench the sample.  The top frame is a normal photograph, while the bottom frame is a thermal image taken within a fraction of a second of the photograph.  As the thermal image shows, the incandescent interior of the flow, which is exposed as lava clinker spalls off, exceeds 1000 degrees Celsius (1800 degrees Fahrenheit).  The geologist is shielding his face from the radiant heat.
This image shows an HVO geologist sampling the lava that was seeping out of the interior of the rootless shield. The lava was placed in a bucket of water to quench the sample. The top frame is a normal photograph, while the bottom frame is a thermal image taken within a fraction of a second of the photograph. As the thermal image shows, the incandescent interior of the flow, which is exposed as lava clinker spalls off, exceeds 1000 degrees Celsius (1800 degrees Fahrenheit). The geologist is shielding his face from the radiant heat.

1 June 2010

Quicktime movie looking into the Halema`uma`u vent cavity

This Quicktime clip shows video from a thermal camera looking into the vent cavity at Halema`uma`u around 3pm today.  The video is shown at x4 speed.  At the beginning of the clip, the lava level is at a high stand, with slowly migrating crustal plates and little spattering.  Eventually, small scale spattering begins in the northeast corner of the pond, accompanied by vigorous degassing.  As the violent spattering disrupts the surface crust, the lava level falls as the gas volume is released.  In this example, the lava level dropped about 30 meters (100 feet).
This Quicktime clip shows video from a thermal camera looking into the vent cavity at Halema`uma`u around 3pm today. The video is shown at x4 speed. At the beginning of the clip, the lava level is at a high stand, with slowly migrating crustal plates and little spattering. Eventually, small scale spattering begins in the northeast corner of the pond, accompanied by vigorous degassing. As the violent spattering disrupts the surface crust, the lava level falls as the gas volume is released. In this example, the lava level dropped about 30 meters (100 feet).
This photo shows the view with the naked eye during the high lava stand shown in the thermal video from today.  When the lava is at a high stand like this, the plume becomes very thin and a rare view of the lava pond is possible.  Typically, the fume is too thick to view the lava surface with the naked eye, and we rely on thermal cameras to image the lava.
This photo shows the view with the naked eye during the high lava stand shown in the thermal video from today. When the lava is at a high stand like this, the plume becomes very thin and a rare view of the lava pond is possible. Typically, the fume is too thick to view the lava surface with the naked eye, and we rely on thermal cameras to image the lava.

27 May 2010

Images showing the TEB rootless shield, spattering in Pu`u `Ō `ō, and an aerial view of the coastline

A small rootless shield is forming on the upper flow field over the breakout point of the Quarry flow, the flow that has been feeding the ocean entry for the past several weeks. The shield is approximately 10-15 m (yards) high. This photo was taken looking SSW, with the upslope direction to the right.
A small vent on the rubble covered floor of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater was actively spattering today. Light winds allowed this relatively clear view into the crater, when otherwise it would be consumed by fume.
Left. A small rootless shield is forming on the upper flow field over the breakout point of the Quarry flow, the flow that has been feeding the ocean entry for the past several weeks. The shield is approximately 10-15 m (yards) high. This photo was taken looking SSW, with the upslope direction to the right. Right. A small vent on the rubble covered floor of Pu`u `Ō `ō crater was actively spattering today. Light winds allowed this relatively clear view into the crater, when otherwise it would be consumed by fume.
As evident by the small plume at the ocean entry, the amount of lava traveling through the tubes from the vent to the ocean has diminished. The most active area of the flow field is above the pali where the new rootless shield is forming. USGS photo by T. Orr.
As evident by the small plume at the ocean entry, the amount of lava traveling through the tubes from the vent to the ocean has diminished. The most active area of the flow field is above the pali where the new rootless shield is forming.

21 May 2010

Thermal images showing the flow field and a spectacular aerial view of the coastline

This composite image overlays a thermal image on a normal photograph, and shows the flow field in the vicinity of the County viewing area, at the end of the Kalapana access road.  Recent flows, from the past few weeks, show up as light red, whereas the currently active breakouts are yellow and white.  One active finger of lava was just 250 yards northwest of the viewing area this morning.  View is towards the northwest.
This composite image overlays a thermal image on a normal photograph, and shows the flow field in the vicinity of the County viewing area, at the end of the Kalapana access road. Recent flows, from the past few weeks, show up as light red, whereas the currently active breakouts are yellow and white. One active finger of lava was just 250 yards northwest of the viewing area this morning. View is towards the northwest.
A closer view of the County viewing area, looking northeast.  Again, the thermal image is shown together with a normal photograph.  Recently emplaced flows, from the past several weeks, are light red (center of image).  The currently active breakouts, just 250 yards northwest of the road, show up as white and yellow.
A closer view of the County viewing area, looking northeast. Again, the thermal image is shown together with a normal photograph. Recently emplaced flows, from the past several weeks, are light red (center of image). The currently active breakouts, just 250 yards northwest of the road, show up as white and yellow.
An aerial photograph looking west along the coastline of the current flow field.  The Ki entry continues to produce a small plume, which is distributed along the newly formed delta. The color change in the ocean near the entry is due to the wave erosion of material from the delta and the lava itself.
An aerial photograph looking west along the coastline of the current flow field. The Ki entry continues to produce a small plume, which is distributed along the newly formed delta. The color change in the ocean near the entry is due to the wave erosion of material from the delta and the lava itself.

14 May 2010

Spectacular views at Halema`uma`u, Pu`u `Ō `ō and the ocean entry

Looking south across Halema`uma`u Crater at the gas plume rising from the Overlook vent.
Looking south across Halema`uma`u Crater at the gas plume rising from the Overlook vent.
Steep view of the Overlook vent from over the south rim of Halema`uma`u. The closed and partly destroyed visitor overlook is visible at the bottom of the image.
 Fume marks the trace of the tube system within the new Quarry flow. The Ki ocean entry, where the lava flowing through the tube system spills into the ocean, is at upper left. The shiny surfaces in the foreground at the center of the image are active lava flows.
Left. Steep view of the Overlook vent from over the south rim of Halema`uma`u. The closed and partly destroyed visitor overlook is visible at the bottom of the image. Right. Fume marks the trace of the tube system within the new Quarry flow. The Ki ocean entry, where the lava flowing through the tube system spills into the ocean, is at upper left. The shiny surfaces in the foreground at the center of the image are active lava flows.
 Since reaching the water a few weeks ago, the Ki ocean entry has formed a small delta, seen here, with a surface area of about 7 acres. A small steam plume rises above the entry, indicating that relatively little lava is making it into the ocean.
 The western side of the delta was the most active, with several small streams of lava pouring off the front of the delta into the water.
Left. Since reaching the water a few weeks ago, the Ki ocean entry has formed a small delta, seen here, with a surface area of about 7 acres. A small steam plume rises above the entry, indicating that relatively little lava is making it into the ocean. Right. The western side of the delta was the most active, with several small streams of lava pouring off the front of the delta into the water.
 Early Tuesday morning (May 11), a large slice of the north rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō collapsed into the crater, taking the Pu`u `Ō `ō Webcam with it. The collapse took a large bite out of the rim, seen here at center frame, that widened the crater by up to 17 m (56 ft).
 This photo, taken on tax day (April 15), shows the north rim of the crater as it has looked for the last couple of years. The yellow line marks the rim as it appears now.
Left. Early Tuesday morning (May 11), a large slice of the north rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō collapsed into the crater, taking the Pu`u `Ō `ō Webcam with it. The collapse took a large bite out of the rim, seen here at center frame, that widened the crater by up to 17 m (56 ft). Right. This photo, taken on tax day (April 15), shows the north rim of the crater as it has looked for the last couple of years. The yellow line marks the rim as it appears now.
 Power and Ethernet cables disappear over the rim of the crater. The collapse left the chunk of rim in the background dangling precariously. It is likely that this slice will join its neighbor in the coming weeks.
The floor of Pu`u `Ō `ō Crater, about 100 m (330 ft) below, is now partly covered by a nice new blanket of reddish rubble.
Left. Power and Ethernet cables disappear over the rim of the crater. The collapse left the chunk of rim in the background dangling precariously. It is likely that this slice will join its neighbor in the coming weeks.Right. The floor of Pu`u `Ō `ō Crater, about 100 m (330 ft) below, is now partly covered by a nice new blanket of reddish rubble.
Surpisingly, the Webcam managed to stay on top as it rode the avalanche to the bottom of the crater. When the fume cleared, the broken legs of the tripod (center frame and slightly above and right of center) and the Webcam enclosure (just below the tripod legs at center) were visible on the rubble pile.
A new Webcam now sits on the north rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō. A new panorama of the crater, with a different view, will be back online soon.
Left. Surpisingly, the Webcam managed to stay on top as it rode the avalanche to the bottom of the crater. When the fume cleared, the broken legs of the tripod (center frame and slightly above and right of center) and the Webcam enclosure (just below the tripod legs at center) were visible on the rubble pile.Right. A new Webcam now sits on the north rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō. A new panorama of the crater, with a different view, will be back online soon.

7 May 2010

Fume at Pu`u `Ō `ō crater and views from the ocean entry

Fume from Pu`u `Ō `ō crater was relatively light today, allowing for nice views into the crater. The Halema`uma`u plume is in the background just below the clouds.
Sometime in the last week, a 2-3 m (yard) skylight opened over the recently formed lava tube that is currently feeding the ocean entry. The terrace on the edge of the lava stream hosts smooth ripple-like features that form during lava level fluctuations, when lava rises up and spills over onto the ledge. Flow direction is from right to left.
Left. Fume from Pu`u `Ō `ō crater was relatively light today, allowing for nice views into the crater. The Halema`uma`u plume is in the background just below the clouds. Right. Sometime in the last week, a 2-3 m (yard) skylight opened over the recently formed lava tube that is currently feeding the ocean entry. The terrace on the edge of the lava stream hosts smooth ripple-like features that form during lava level fluctuations, when lava rises up and spills over onto the ledge. Flow direction is from right to left.
View of the current TEB flow field. The ocean entry continues, producing a weak plume scattered along the coastline. The lighter gray colored lava is the recent flow that has entered the vegetation and reached the pavement at the end of Highway 130. Plumes from the TEB shield and Pu`u `Ō `ō crater are on the horizon.
A closer view of the recent flows working their way down the road and through the trees. The viewing area has been moved back once again due to its proximity to the lava flows and potential fire hazards.
Left. View of the current TEB flow field. The ocean entry continues, producing a weak plume scattered along the coastline. The lighter gray colored lava is the recent flow that has entered the vegetation and reached the pavement at the end of Highway 130. Plumes from the TEB shield and Pu`u `Ō `ō crater are on the horizon. Right. A closer view of the recent flows working their way down the road and through the trees. The viewing area has been moved back once again due to its proximity to the lava flows and potential fire hazards.

5 May 2010

Activity continue to be active near the Kalapana access road

Breakouts continued to be active on the east margin of the flow field, and hit the pavement of the Kalapana access road today creating thick black smoke from the burning asphalt.
Flows reached the pavement where the former gate resided.
Left. Breakouts continued to be active on the east margin of the flow field, and hit the pavement of the Kalapana access road today creating thick black smoke from the burning asphalt. Right. Flows reached the pavement where the former gate resided.
Flow expansion over the past day also covered most of the former lava viewing area.  The County has since relocated the viewing area farther east.
Upslope from the west end of the access road, scattered breakouts continued to be active.
Left. Flow expansion over the past day also covered most of the former lava viewing area. The County has since relocated the viewing area farther east. Right. Upslope from the west end of the access road, scattered breakouts continued to be active.
Just south of the access road, active pahoehoe was pushing through thick vegetation, creating scattered brush fires and small methane bursts.
Just south of the access road, active pahoehoe was pushing through thick vegetation, creating scattered brush fires and small methane bursts.

1 May 2010

Views from the ocean entry

The ocean entry that started on April 29 continues, and has expanded in width.
One of several lava streams on the shore.
Left. The ocean entry that started on April 29 continues, and has expanded in width. Right. One of several lava streams on the shore.

29 April 2010

Image showing first finger of lava approaching the ocean

Lava first touched the water at 12:15pm, and this photo shows the first finger of lava approaching the ocean.
Lava first touched the water at 12:15pm, and this photo shows the first finger of lava approaching the ocean.

28 April 2010

County viewing area composite and views of the active flow field

This composite image of the County viewing area in Kalapana combines a thermal image, showing the active flow lobe in red and yellow, with a normal photograph.  The lighter yellow areas are locations of active breakouts at the flow margin, and smoke can be seen originating from the flow front where breakouts are burning vegetation.
This composite image of the County viewing area in Kalapana combines a thermal image, showing the active flow lobe in red and yellow, with a normal photograph. The lighter yellow areas are locations of active breakouts at the flow margin, and smoke can be seen originating from the flow front where breakouts are burning vegetation.
View looking south at the currently active flow crossing the coastal plain west of Kalapana. The new flow is the silvery lava crossing the photo from lower right to top center where the flow front is burning vegetation. The end of Hwy 130 is visible at upper left.
	 Zoomed-in view of the current visitor viewing area at the end of Hwy 130.
Left. View looking south at the currently active flow crossing the coastal plain west of Kalapana. The new flow is the silvery lava crossing the photo from lower right to top center where the flow front is burning vegetation. The end of Hwy 130 is visible at upper left.Right. Zoomed-in view of the current visitor viewing area at the end of Hwy 130.
View looking back to the north at the terminus of the active flow as it approaches the forested kipuka at the center of the photo. Hwy 130 is at upper right. The old ocean entry viewing area, open from 2008 to early 2010, is visible near the bottom of the photo just to the right of center. The flows area expected to burn through the kipuka and reach the ocean very close to that old viewing area sometime over the next several days.
More distant view looking north at the active flow as it crossing the coastal plain and approaches the ocean. Houses in the Kalapana Gardens subdivision are visible to the right. The lava tube feeding lava to the flow front is delineated by the points of fume at upper left.
Left. View looking back to the north at the terminus of the active flow as it approaches the forested kipuka at the center of the photo. Hwy 130 is at upper right. The old ocean entry viewing area, open from 2008 to early 2010, is visible near the bottom of the photo just to the right of center. The flows area expected to burn through the kipuka and reach the ocean very close to that old viewing area sometime over the next several days.Right. More distant view looking north at the active flow as it crossing the coastal plain and approaches the ocean. Houses in the Kalapana Gardens subdivision are visible to the right. The lava tube feeding lava to the flow front is delineated by the points of fume at upper left.

27 April 2010

Lava crossed and buried the County lava viewing trail

Lava, on its southward journey to the ocean, crossed and buried the County lava viewing trail.  The viewing area was relocated a short distance back from the flow margin.
A 3 meter (10 ft) high cascade feeds lava into an old quarry at the end of the Kalapana access road, within view of the County viewing area.
Left. Lava, on its southward journey to the ocean, crossed and buried the County lava viewing trail. The viewing area was relocated a short distance back from the flow margin. Right. A 3 meter (10 ft) high cascade feeds lava into an old quarry at the end of the Kalapana access road, within view of the County viewing area.

23 April 2010

Thermal/Visible images showing advancement of the active flows

This comparison of thermal images over the coastal plain shows the advancement of the active flows over the past week.  At the top, a normal photograph from April 15 gives reference.  The middle frame, from April 15, shows that the flows were approaching the bottom of the pali last week.  In the bottom frame, from today's overflight, the thermal image shows that the flows have migrated southeast into a kipuka several hundred meters (yards) north of the County viewing area.
This comparison of thermal images over the coastal plain shows the advancement of the active flows over the past week. At the top, a normal photograph from April 15 gives reference. The middle frame, from April 15, shows that the flows were approaching the bottom of the pali last week. In the bottom frame, from today's overflight, the thermal image shows that the flows have migrated southeast into a kipuka several hundred meters (yards) north of the County viewing area.

22 April 2010

Activity continues to burn vegetation in the kipuka

Another tree goes up in flames as the lava moves further into the kipuka. Looking closely, you can see the ash from the tree in the smoke column.
Another tree goes up in flames as the lava moves further into the kipuka. Looking closely, you can see the ash from the tree in the smoke column.
This photo shows the ropey texture of a recently crusted pahoehoe flow, as well as its superior strength as a natural insulator. The crack is still glowing hot but the lava is no longer moving under the crust.
The activity continues to burn vegetation in the kipuka adjacent to the trail, causing the viewing trail to be closed beyond the trailhead. The new viewing area is still very close to the active flows.
Left. This photo shows the ropey texture of a recently crusted pahoehoe flow, as well as its superior strength as a natural insulator. The crack is still glowing hot but the lava is no longer moving under the crust.Right. The activity continues to burn vegetation in the kipuka adjacent to the trail, causing the viewing trail to be closed beyond the trailhead. The new viewing area is still very close to the active flows.

20 April 2010

Visible/thermal image showing active flows on the pali

Surface flows on the coastal plain were active a couple hundred meters (yards) from the current viewing trail at the end of Highway 130. The flows are burning along the margin of a large kipuka mauka of the viewing trail.
While much of the flow stayed along the margin of the kipuka, a few lobes ventured into the vegetation.
Left. Surface flows on the coastal plain were active a couple hundred meters (yards) from the current viewing trail at the end of Highway 130. The flows are burning along the margin of a large kipuka mauka of the viewing trail. Right. While much of the flow stayed along the margin of the kipuka, a few lobes ventured into the vegetation.

15 April 2010

Visible/thermal image showing active flows on the pali

Flows continue to be active on the pali and are advancing southward.  The flow front this morning was approximately 1.4 km (0.9 miles) north of the County viewing area.  Letters A and B denote corresponding points in the photograph (top) and thermal image (bottom).  The active flows show up clearly in the thermal image.
Flows continue to be active on the pali and are advancing southward. The flow front this morning was approximately 1.4 km (0.9 miles) north of the County viewing area. Letters A and B denote corresponding points in the photograph (top) and thermal image (bottom). The active flows show up clearly in the thermal image.

HVO geologist takes an active lava sample from within a lava tube

An HVO geologist takes a sample of active lava within a lava tube.  The fluid lava sticks to the heavy hammer head at the end of the cable when it is lowered into the swiftly moving lava stream.  These samples are analyzed routinely to track changes in lava chemistry.
An HVO geologist takes a sample of active lava within a lava tube. The fluid lava sticks to the heavy hammer head at the end of the cable when it is lowered into the swiftly moving lava stream. These samples are analyzed routinely to track changes in lava chemistry.

8 April 2010

Quicktime movie of lava surface deep within Halema`uma`u

This Quicktime movie shows the lava surface deep within the Halema`uma`u vent cavity, captured with a thermal camera that can see through the thick fume.  The lava surface is about 70 meters (230 ft) wide, and remains about 200 meters (660 ft) below the cavity rim.  The surface is mostly crusted, with a slow migration from north to south.  Small spattering sources occasionally break through the thin crust.  Just a few minutes after this video was taken, violent degassing and spattering ensued, disrupting the entire lava surface, and the lava level dropped about 20 meters (66 ft).
This Quicktime movie shows the lava surface deep within the Halema`uma`u vent cavity, captured with a thermal camera that can see through the thick fume. The lava surface is about 70 meters (230 ft) wide, and remains about 200 meters (660 ft) below the cavity rim. The surface is mostly crusted, with a slow migration from north to south. Small spattering sources occasionally break through the thin crust. Just a few minutes after this video was taken, violent degassing and spattering ensued, disrupting the entire lava surface, and the lava level dropped about 20 meters (66 ft).

Active flows on the pali, east of Royal Gardens subdivision

View of the currently active flows on the pali, east of Royal Gardens subdivision.  The corresponding thermal image highlights the active flow area clearly.  The active flows are traveling down the east margin of the Thanksgiving Eve Breakout (TEB) flow field.  The flows are being fed by a lengthening lava tube, which is marked by a line of fume.  In the distance are the vent (D-vent, at the TEB shield) and Pu`u `Ō `ō.
View of the currently active flows on the pali, east of Royal Gardens subdivision. The corresponding thermal image highlights the active flow area clearly. The active flows are traveling down the east margin of the Thanksgiving Eve Breakout (TEB) flow field. The flows are being fed by a lengthening lava tube, which is marked by a line of fume. In the distance are the vent (D-vent, at the TEB shield) and Pu`u `Ō `ō.
One small breakout among many on the currently active flow field.
One small breakout among many on the currently active flow field.

2 April 2010

View of the active vent in Halema`uma`u Crater

View of the active vent in Halema`uma`u Crater. The remains of the visitor overlook fence are on the crater rim just below the vent. The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory and Jaggar Museum on visible on Uwekahuna Bluff in the background. The broad slope of Mauna Loa's east flank forms the skyline.
View of the active vent in Halema`uma`u Crater. The remains of the visitor overlook fence are on the crater rim just below the vent. The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory and Jaggar Museum on visible on Uwekahuna Bluff in the background. The broad slope of Mauna Loa's east flank forms the skyline.

Active flows from Kilauea's east rift zone

The terminus of the active flows from Kilauea's east rift zone, the lighter color lava seen here, have reached down to about the 1100-ft elevation just east of the older TEB flow field. If these flows continue to push forward, they will likely end up back on top of the older TEB flow field at the base of Pulama pali close to the end of the Kalapana access road.
The terminus of the active flows from Kilauea's east rift zone, the lighter color lava seen here, have reached down to about the 1100-ft elevation just east of the older TEB flow field. If these flows continue to push forward, they will likely end up back on top of the older TEB flow field at the base of Pulama pali close to the end of the Kalapana access road.

19 March 2010

Two-year Anniversary of the Halema`uma`u vent explosion

The ongoing summit eruption at Kīlauea began on this day two years ago.  This thermal image (white is hot, dark blue is cold), taken during today's helicopter overflight, shows the current vent configuration at Halema`uma`u crater.  The vent cavity is about 130 meters (430 ft) wide, and has consumed portions of the wall and floor of Halema`uma`u crater.  The vent cavity resides directly below the former Halema`uma`u Overlook, which was badly damaged in the March 19, 2008, vent opening explosion.  The active lava surface (about 70 meters, or 230 ft, wide) is situated at a depth of about 200 meters (660 ft) below the rim of the vent cavity.  The lava surface consists of large crustal plates—clearly discernable in this image—which slowly migrate from north to south, reflecting circulation in the lava column.  A small degassing hole resides on the floor of the vent cavity as well, just south of the lava surface.
The ongoing summit eruption at Kīlauea began on this day two years ago. This thermal image (white is hot, dark blue is cold), taken during today's helicopter overflight, shows the current vent configuration at Halema`uma`u crater. The vent cavity is about 130 meters (430 ft) wide, and has consumed portions of the wall and floor of Halema`uma`u crater. The vent cavity resides directly below the former Halema`uma`u Overlook, which was badly damaged in the March 19, 2008, vent opening explosion. The active lava surface (about 70 meters, or 230 ft, wide) is situated at a depth of about 200 meters (660 ft) below the rim of the vent cavity. The lava surface consists of large crustal plates—clearly discernable in this image—which slowly migrate from north to south, reflecting circulation in the lava column. A small degassing hole resides on the floor of the vent cavity as well, just south of the lava surface.

16 March 2010

Breakouts resume and continue through the week

After a short pause in surface activity late last week, breakouts resumed over the weekend and continued through this week.  Scattered pahoehoe flows were located above the pali, about 1.6 km (1 mile) north of Royal Gardens subdivision.
After a short pause in surface activity late last week, breakouts resumed over the weekend and continued through this week. Scattered pahoehoe flows were located above the pali, about 1.6 km (1 mile) north of Royal Gardens subdivision.

12 March 2010

No surface flows on the flow field

No surface flows were active anywhere on the flow field today, due to summit deflation and a reduction in lava supply over the past few days.  Summit inflation resumed yesterday, and an increase in lava supply should lead to resumed breakouts over the next several days.  This photo shows the area of flows that were active over the past week—they can be identified as the lighter colored lobe in the center of the photograph that has cut through the middle of the forested area (the remains of Royal Gardens subdivision).   These flows were advancing across the coastal plain earlier in the week.  Pu`u `Ō `ō, and its persistent degassing plume, can be seen in the upper left corner of the photograph.
No surface flows were active anywhere on the flow field today, due to summit deflation and a reduction in lava supply over the past few days. Summit inflation resumed yesterday, and an increase in lava supply should lead to resumed breakouts over the next several days. This photo shows the area of flows that were active over the past week—they can be identified as the lighter colored lobe in the center of the photograph that has cut through the middle of the forested area (the remains of Royal Gardens subdivision). These flows were advancing across the coastal plain earlier in the week. Pu`u `Ō `ō, and its persistent degassing plume, can be seen in the upper left corner of the photograph.

11 March 2010

Quicktime movie showing the active lava pond deep with the Halema`uma`u vent cavity

This Quicktime movie shows the active lava pond deep within the Halema`uma`u vent cavity.  The lava is upwelling at the northern margin of the pond (the upper margin in this view), and slowly migrating south towards the bottom of the image, where it sinks out of view.  The pond is about 50 m wide.  Small spattering sources appear and disappear occasionally.  This video was taken with a thermal camera (white is hot, dark blue is cold), which is able to see through the thick fume.  No views were possible with the naked eye today due to the fume, and only loud gas roaring sounds could be heard.
This Quicktime movie shows the active lava pond deep within the Halema`uma`u vent cavity. The lava is upwelling at the northern margin of the pond (the upper margin in this view), and slowly migrating south towards the bottom of the image, where it sinks out of view. The pond is about 50 m wide. Small spattering sources appear and disappear occasionally. This video was taken with a thermal camera (white is hot, dark blue is cold), which is able to see through the thick fume. No views were possible with the naked eye today due to the fume, and only loud gas roaring sounds could be heard.

10 March 2010

Thermal image at Halema`uma`u shows the current activity

This image was collected from a thermal camera at the Halema`uma`u Overlook, and shows the current activity at the summit.  The active lava pond, about 40 m across, is situated deep within the vent cavity, at a depth of about 200 m.  The lava surface consists of slowly migrating crustal plates, with a spattering source on the east margin of the pond.  The lava surface is slightly deeper than its usual level, owing to deflation during the current deflation-inflation (DI) cycle.
This image was collected from a thermal camera at the Halema`uma`u Overlook, and shows the current activity at the summit. The active lava pond, about 40 m across, is situated deep within the vent cavity, at a depth of about 200 m. The lava surface consists of slowly migrating crustal plates, with a spattering source on the east margin of the pond. The lava surface is slightly deeper than its usual level, owing to deflation during the current deflation-inflation (DI) cycle.

5 March 2010

Lava flow burns vegetation in small kipuka

A lava flow burns what little vegetation is left in this small kipuka at the top of the pali.
A lava flow burns what little vegetation is left in this small kipuka at the top of the pali.

Visible/Infrared image of the current flow field

The FLIR image on the right is a close-up infrared image of the current flow field, shown on the left.
The FLIR image on the right is a close-up infrared image of the current flow field, shown on the left.

25 February 2010

Fume sources on the TEB flow field and an overplating pāhoehoe flow

The upper TEB flow field, looking south.  The fuming hole in the foreground is the TEB vent.  The other fume sources, which help delineate the lava tube, are coming from collapsed areas down the tube system.
A small active pāhoehoe flow overplating an older 'a'ā flow on the upper TEB flow field.  There were a few small scattered breakouts above the pali, but the majority of the surface activity was flowing through Royal Gardens and onto the coastal plain.
Left. The upper TEB flow field, looking south. The fuming hole in the foreground is the TEB vent. The other fume sources, which help delineate the lava tube, are coming from collapsed areas down the tube system.Right. A small active pāhoehoe flow overplating an older 'a'ā flow on the upper TEB flow field. There were a few small scattered breakouts above the pali, but the majority of the surface activity was flowing through Royal Gardens and onto the coastal plain.

19 February 2010

Active lava flow continue to creep across the coastal plain

Lava, showing up here as the light colored area, continues to creep across the coastal plain toward the national park, having now reached about 1.3 km (0.8 miles) out from the base of the pali.
The lava flows on the coastal plain, which show up as the light colored flows in the foreground, are erupted into the TEB tube system from the D fissure which first opened up in July 2007. This vent is faintly visible as a fuming source in the background near the upper left corner of the photo. Smaller fuming sources between vent and coastal plain mark the trace of the TEB tube.
Left. Lava, showing up here as the light colored area, continues to creep across the coastal plain toward the national park, having now reached about 1.3 km (0.8 miles) out from the base of the pali.Right. The lava flows on the coastal plain, which show up as the light colored flows in the foreground, are erupted into the TEB tube system from the D fissure which first opened up in July 2007. This vent is faintly visible as a fuming source in the background near the upper left corner of the photo. Smaller fuming sources between vent and coastal plain mark the trace of the TEB tube.

12 February 2010

Active lava flows within Royal Gardens subdivision and onto the coastal plain

Lava flows remain active within the Royal Gardens subdivision and onto the coastal plain below. The number of surface flows has decreased however, due in part to a probable decrease in activity related to the ongoing deflation of Pu`u `Ō `ō, and because the new lava tube branch feeding the flows is becoming better developed.
As the lava tube becomes better established, the surface flows on the pali will probably die out while the flows on the coastal plain continue to move toward the ocean.
Left. Lava flows remain active within the Royal Gardens subdivision and onto the coastal plain below. The number of surface flows has decreased however, due in part to a probable decrease in activity related to the ongoing deflation of Pu`u `Ō `ō, and because the new lava tube branch feeding the flows is becoming better developed.Right. As the lava tube becomes better established, the surface flows on the pali will probably die out while the flows on the coastal plain continue to move toward the ocean.
The currently active flows on the pali continue to chip away at the few remaining streets in the beleaguered Royal Gardens subdivision. Those visible here are pretty much all that's left, with the exception of one small kipuka out of sight to the right.
The currently active flows on the pali continue to chip away at the few remaining streets in the beleaguered Royal Gardens subdivision. Those visible here are pretty much all that's left, with the exception of one small kipuka out of sight to the right.

3 February 2010

Six channelized flows meander down the pali to the Royal Gardens subdivision

Six channelized flows meander down a steep portion of the pali, burning vegetation in the remaining portion of Royal Gardens subdivision.
Six channelized flows meander down a steep portion of the pali, burning vegetation in the remaining portion of Royal Gardens subdivision.
Six channelized flows meander down a steep portion of the pali, burning vegetation in the remaining portion of Royal Gardens subdivision.
Areas of the forest go up in flames as the 'a'ā flow pushes its way through the vegetation at the base of the pali, and flows onto the coastal plain.
Areas of the forest go up in flames as the 'a'ā flow pushes its way through the vegetation at the base of the pali, and flows onto the coastal plain.
Areas of the forest go up in flames as the 'a'ā flow pushes its way through the vegetation at the base of the pali, and flows onto the coastal plain.
The largest and eastern-most active channel spreads out near the base of the pali.
As the slope decreases, the 'a'ā flows fan out onto the coastal plain.
Left. The largest and eastern-most active channel spreads out near the base of the pali. Right. As the slope decreases, the 'a'ā flows fan out onto the coastal plain.

29 January 2010

Active pāhoehoe flow in the Royal Gardens subdivision and clear view in Pu`u `Ō `ō crater

The active front of a pāhoehoe flow near the intersection of Pikake and Warrior Street, in the Royal Gardens subdivision.  The road in the lower portion of the photo is the last remaining piece of Pikake Street.
A relatively clear view into Pu`u `Ō `ōcrater, looking NNE.  Several persistent fuming sources are visible in the crater, including the source of a small lava flow near the crater's center.  The dark area trending east-west at the bottom of the crater is a small lava flow that erupted between January 13 and January 19.
Left. The active front of a pāhoehoe flow near the intersection of Pikake and Warrior Street, in the Royal Gardens subdivision. The road in the lower portion of the photo is the last remaining piece of Pikake Street. Right.A relatively clear view into Pu`u `Ō `ō crater, looking NNE. Several persistent fuming sources are visible in the crater, including the source of a small lava flow near the crater's center. The dark area trending east-west at the bottom of the crater is a small lava flow that erupted between January 13 and January 19.

22 January 2010

'A'ā flow stalled in Royal Gardens subdivision

The 'a'ā flow that was active in the upper reaches of Royal Gardens subdivision on January 19 had stalled by today.  The flow can be identified as the dark flow terminating near the center of the photograph.  The flow front had extended well into the subdivision, almost reaching the level of Plumeria Street.  About 400 m to the west of this flow, at the west end of Plumeria, is the last occupied structure in Royal Gardens, visible by the red roof.  Pu`u `Ō `ō can be seen in the upper right of the photograph.
The 'a'ā flow that was active in the upper reaches of Royal Gardens subdivision on January 19 had stalled by today. The flow can be identified as the dark flow terminating near the center of the photograph. The flow front had extended well into the subdivision, almost reaching the level of Plumeria Street. About 400 m to the west of this flow, at the west end of Plumeria, is the last occupied structure in Royal Gardens, visible by the red roof. Pu`u `Ō `ō can be seen in the upper right of the photograph.

19 January 2010

Thick vog blankets Halema`um`ua vent

Fume from the erupting vent in Halema`uma`u blankets the summit of Kīlauea in thick vog.
Fume from the erupting vent in Halema`uma`u blankets the summit of Kīlauea in thick vog.

Active terminus on the western side of TEB in Royal Gardens Subdivision

	Kīlauea's east rift zone eruption site.  Pu`u `Ō `ō is to the right, and the TEB vent and upper tube system is to the left and behind Pu`u `Ō `ō.
The terminus of the eastern branch of the one active flow above the pali. Pu`u `Ō `ō is at the top in the center with the TEB vent to the right.
Left. Kīlauea's east rift zone eruption site. Pu`u `Ō `ō is to the right, and the TEB vent and upper tube system is to the left and behind Pu`u `Ō `ō. Right.The terminus of the eastern branch of the one active flow above the pali. Pu`u `Ō `ō is at the top in the center with the TEB vent to the right.
	The terminus of the more vigorous western branch of the active flow on the western side of the TEB flow field near the top of the Royal Gardens subdivision.
Close-up of the front of the channelized 'a'ā flow on the western side of the TEB flow.
Left. The terminus of the more vigorous western branch of the active flow on the western side of the TEB flow field near the top of the Royal Gardens subdivision. Right.Close-up of the front of the channelized 'a'ā flow on the western side of the TEB flow.

14 January 2010

Views into Halema`um`ua vent showing the ponded surface and vigorous spattering

	The lava surface rose to its highest level in at least a year. The ponded surface covered most of the bottom the collapse pit in the floor of Halema`uma`u, and was probably more than 100 m across.
Much of the time, however, the lava level was much lower, forming rapidly moving river of lava that cascaded into a deeper hole on the north side of the pit floor.
Left. The lava surface rose to its highest level in at least a year. The ponded surface covered most of the bottom the collapse pit in the floor of Halema`uma`u, and was probably more than 100 m across. Right.Much of the time, however, the lava level was much lower, forming rapidly moving river of lava that cascaded into a deeper hole on the north side of the pit floor.
	The lava surface was typically topped by vigorous spattering.
The lava surface was typically topped by vigorous spattering.
The lava surface was typically topped by vigorous spattering.
	The lava surface was typically topped by vigorous spattering.
Occasionally, a small dome fountain briefly formed on the lava surface.
Left. The lava surface was typically topped by vigorous spattering.Right.Occasionally, a small dome fountain briefly formed on the lava surface.
	At lower lava levels, large lava falls formed where lava cascaded down into a deeper opening.
At one point, as the ponded lava began to drain away, a vortex formed on the lava surface. The curved streaks around the spattering point at the bottom of the image show where lava is beginning to move in a clockwise direction.
Left. At lower lava levels, large lava falls formed where lava cascaded down into a deeper opening. Right.At one point, as the ponded lava began to drain away, a vortex formed on the lava surface. The curved streaks around the spattering point at the bottom of the image show where lava is beginning to move in a clockwise direction.
	The lava whirlpool is even better developed here and has migrated toward the north.
With further draining, deep opening are exposed on the eastern side of the pit floor and the lava river pouring off into a deep hole on the north side of the pit.
Left. The lava whirlpool is even better developed here and has migrated toward the north.Right.With further draining, deep opening are exposed on the eastern side of the pit floor and the lava river pouring off into a deep hole on the north side of the pit.

13 January 2010

Quicktime thermal movie showing the entire floor of the Halema`uma`u vent

This Quicktime movie shows video collected with a thermal camera during two helicopter overflights of the Halema`uma`u vent.  The high vantage point allowed a view of the entire floor of the vent cavity, which is not possible from the ground.  Also, the thermal camera can 'see' through the thick fume that normally obscures the vent to the naked eye.  The first half of the video shows observations on January 7, when a dome fountain on the floor of the vent cavity was feeding a wide, vigorously flowing lava stream towards the north.  The second half of the video shows observations on January 13, at which point the lava stream had disappeared and two degassing holes were active.  The northern hole (on the right) appears to have lava just below the rim.
This Quicktime movie shows video collected with a thermal camera during two helicopter overflights of the Halema`uma`u vent. The high vantage point allowed a view of the entire floor of the vent cavity, which is not possible from the ground. Also, the thermal camera can "see" through the thick fume that normally obscures the vent to the naked eye. The first half of the video shows observations on January 7, when a dome fountain on the floor of the vent cavity was feeding a wide, vigorously flowing lava stream towards the north. The second half of the video shows observations on January 13, at which point the lava stream had disappeared and two degassing holes were active. The northern hole (on the right) appears to have lava just below the rim.

View of Pu`u `Ō `ō and the TEB vent

	View of Pu`u `Ō `ō and the TEB vent looking northwest.  There is a distinctive separation between the two plumes coming from Pu`u `Ō `ō.  The east wall vent is creating the plume closest to the east rim, and the larger plume is coming from a combination of several other vents inside the crater.  The TEB vent is putting off the wispy plume in the foreground.
Two HVO geologists are standing on the east rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō cone, triangulating the depth of several degassing vents inside the crater.  An infrared camera is being used to see the vents through the fume.  The plume in the background is coming from the east wall vent.
Left. View of Pu`u `Ō `ō and the TEB vent looking northwest. There is a distinctive separation between the two plumes coming from Pu`u `Ō `ō. The east wall vent is creating the plume closest to the east rim, and the larger plume is coming from a combination of several other vents inside the crater. The TEB vent is putting off the wispy plume in the foreground. Right.Two HVO geologists are standing on the east rim of Pu`u `Ō `ō cone, triangulating the depth of several degassing vents inside the crater. An infrared camera is being used to see the vents through the fume. The plume in the background is coming from the east wall vent.

7 January 2010

View of Waikupanaha lava delta

View of the inactive Waikupanaha lava delta.  There has been no steam plume or lava ocean entry since the first weekend in January.  The viewpoint of this photo is similar to the Dec 17 and Dec 29 photos on the website (when the entry was active).
View of the inactive Waikupanaha lava delta. There has been no steam plume or lava ocean entry since the first weekend in January. The viewpoint of this photo is similar to the Dec 17 and Dec 29 photos on the website (when the entry was active).

7 January 2010

Spectacular eruptive activity deep within Halema`uma`u Crater

Spectacular eruptive activity has been occurring deep within the collapse pit in Halema`uma`u Crater at Kīlauea's summit. At times, a river of lava poured into a deeper plunge pool of lava, which had a dome fountain on its right-hand side.
Spectacular eruptive activity has been occurring deep within the collapse pit in Halema`uma`u Crater at Kīlauea's summit. At times, a river of lava poured into a deeper plunge pool of lava, which had a dome fountain on its right-hand side.
The bottom of the collapse pit is roughly 285 meters (935 feet) below the rim of Halema`uma`u, from which this photo was taken.
Over the last several days, lava has episodically risen up to cover the bottom of the collapse pit, as shown here.
Left. The bottom of the collapse pit is roughly 285 meters (935 feet) below the rim of Halema`uma`u, from which this photo was taken. Right.Over the last several days, lava has episodically risen up to cover the bottom of the collapse pit, as shown here.
	A bathtub ring of black lava record the high-lava mark at the bottom of the pit.
The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory and Jaggar Museum are tiny bumps at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano in the background of this photo.
Left. A bathtub ring of black lava record the high-lava mark at the bottom of the pit. Right.The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory and Jaggar Museum are tiny bumps at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano in the background of this photo.
A particularly clear view reveals the walls of the collapse pit above the lava surface. The lava surface is roughly 200 meters (656 feet) below the floor of Halema`uma`u Crater, which is the smooth surface in the background.
A particularly clear view reveals the walls of the collapse pit above the lava surface. The lava surface is roughly 200 meters (656 feet) below the floor of Halema`uma`u Crater, which is the smooth surface in the background.

Eruption-viewing opportunities change constantly, so refer to this page often. Those readers planning a visit to Kilauea or Mauna Loa volcanoes can get much useful information from Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park.


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The URL of this page is http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/multimedia/archive/2010/2010_Jan-Jul.html
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Updated: 1 August 2010 (pnf)