HVO Photos & Video

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July 22, 2016 — Kīlauea


Sluggish pāhoehoe breakouts advance slowly on coastal plain

The flow front remains active and consists of slowly advancing pāhoehoe. There are scattered breakouts along the margins of the flow on the coastal plain and base of the pali. During the overflight today, the flow front was 730 m (0.45 miles) from the ocean.

A faint double rainbow provided a beautiful backdrop for sluggish pāhoehoe lava oozing out from near the flow front this morning.

During early morning field observations, a large breakout of lava near the base of Pūlama Pali (steep fault scarp in background) was visible through fumes from the lava tube and heat shimmer from lava on the coastal plain. The approximate location of the lava tube feeding Kīlauea's active lava flow is visible as degassing sources (white fume) on the pali.

Left: A breakout at the base of the pali viewed by a field crew this morning has formed a channelized ʻaʻā flow on the steeper portion of the coastal plain. Right: A close up view of the ʻaʻā channel.

July 20, 2016 — Kīlauea


Lava flow on coastal plain still active

Left: Kīlauea Volcano's lava flow remains active, with pāhoehoe lobes, like the one shown here, slowly advancing on the coastal plain. Breakouts upslope of the leading edge continue to widen the flow margins. Today, the active flow front was approximately 850 m (0.5 miles) from the ocean, and 720 m (0.4 miles) from the road. Right: The HVO field crew mapped new breakouts on the lava flow by recording GPS points along the active flow margin.

Vigorous spattering on Kīlauea summit lava lake

Left: A long, hot hike was not needed to see red lava today. Vigorous spattering from Kīlauea Volcano's summit lava lake was visible from the Jaggar Museum Overlook in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park as of this afternoon. The lava lake surface, measured at 25 m (82 ft) below the vent rim this morning, was high enough for the spattering to be seen from afar. Right: A zoomed-in view of the lava lake spattering.

July 19, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front remains active on coastal plain, but little forward movement

The flow remains active on the pali and coastal plain, with scattered breakouts of pāhoehoe lava. Over the past week, however, the leading tip of the flow has advanced only a short distance. Today, the flow front was 850 m (0.5 miles) from the ocean. In this photograph, the current lava flow is the lighter color area in the center of the photo.

Left: Only a few short sections of road in Royal Gardens subdivision remain uncovered by lava. In this kipuka, about 200 m (220 yards) of Orchid Street is still exposed. Right: This photograph looks downslope at the uppermost section of the Episode 61g flow. The vent is in the lower left corner of the photo. Several collapses have occurred over the lava tube, and the trace of the tube can be seen by the fuming sources extending downslope.

The large hole on the northeast flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō remains open, providing a view of forked lava streams. Since the last overflight on Friday, July 15, the lava streams have started to crust over, reducing the glow in the pit.

July 15, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front slowly advancing

The flow front remains active on the coastal plain, but has only moved about 60 m (~200 ft) closer to the ocean in the past three days. As of midday on July 15, the slow-moving pahoehoe is roughly 870 m (~0.5 mi) from the ocean. Activity upslope continues to widen the flow margins. The light gray surface in this image is the new pahoehoe of the 61G flow.

Aerial view of the Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park Coastal Ranger Station at the end of Chain of Craters Road with the active lava flow (61G) in the distance. Correlative thermal image highlighting the hot, active flow at the top portion of the photo (right).

July 12, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front activity persists, but advance still slow

Surface breakouts remained active on the pali and coastal plain, but the leading tip of the flow has advanced little since mapping on Sunday. This morning, the flow front was about 940 m (0.6 miles) from the ocean. Activity upslope of the flow front was widening the flow margins. In this photo, the active flow is the lighter colored area.

Above the pali there are no surface breakouts, and lava is carried downslope within the subsurface lava tube system. The trace of the lava tubes is evident by the line of fuming point sources along the flow. Puʻu ʻŌʻō, and the vent for the current flow, are in the upper left portion of the photo.

July 10, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front advance on coastal plain slows further

The leading tip of the flow has moved only 40 m (130 feet) since yesterday's mapping and the lava activity at the tip was still very weak. The leading lava lobe had a dull surface and rough texture suggesting that it may have cooled somewhat within the flow interior.

About 200 meters (yards) upslope of the leading tip of the flow, more typical pāhoehoe was present - with a shiny, smooth surface.

July 9, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front continues slow advance on coastal plain

The flow front activity was relatively weak today, but still active and advancing. The flow front at midday was about 1 km from the ocean (0.6 miles), having moved about 130 m (140 yards) since yesterday's mapping.

Left: An HVO geologist maps the flow margin using a handheld GPS unit. Right: One of the many breakouts upslope of the flow front.

July 8, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front slows down on the coastal plain

After rapidly advancing across about half of the coastal plain, the flow front slowed considerably over the past day. The front moved only moved about 90 m (300 feet) since yesterday's mapping, and activity at the leading tip of the flow was fairly weak today. The position of the lava flow front relative to the shoreline can be seen in this aerial photograph. The leading edge of the flow, which was 1.1 km (0.7 miles) from the ocean today, is the light-colored area near the center of the image.

More vigorous breakouts were active upslope, near the base of the pali. Fume from the lava tubes and smoke from burning vegetation are visible on the pali in the upper part of the photo. Puʻu ʻŌʻō is visible on the upper left skyline.

Channelized ʻaʻā lava flows were still active on the steep sections of the pali. Dark brown areas are recently active ʻaʻā, and the shiny gray areas are pāhoehoe lava.

Left: A deep hole remains open on the upper northeast flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō, revealing a forked stream of swiftly moving lava (just visible in this photo). Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater is visible in the upper part of the photo. Right: A wider view of the fume-filled crater at Puʻu ʻŌʻō. The deep hole near the crater rim (see photo at left) is just left of center in this image.

July 7, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front slowly advancing across coastal plain

The flow front remains active, and consists of slow-moving pāhoehoe lava. This afternoon (July 7) the flow front was roughly 2.2 km (1.4 miles) from the base of the pali, 1.2 km (0.7 miles) from the ocean, and 1 km (0.6 miles) from the road.

View of an ʻaʻā flow surging down the face of the pali. Narrower ʻaʻā channels are visible below.

July 6, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front more than halfway across coastal plain

The flow front remains active, and was more than half way across the coastal plain today (July 6). This afternoon, the flow front was roughly 2 km (1.2 miles) from the base of the pali, and 1.3 km (0.8 miles) from the ocean. The front consisted of slow moving pāhoehoe.

Left: Close-up view of a typical surface on pāhoehoe lava. Right: As this small channel of lava flows into a depression, its semi-congealed surface twists and wrinkles—forming the ropy surface commonly seen on pāhoehoe flows. Flows on the pali are visible in the background.

The hardened crust of this pāhoehoe lava is pushed upward as the flow advances, exposing the incandescent lava beneath.

July 5, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front continues across coastal plain

The flow front remains active, and continues to advance across the coastal plain. This afternoon, the flow front was approximately 1.7 km (1.1 miles) from the ocean. The leading front of the flow is the light gray area in the low center area of the photograph.

A comparison of a normal photograph (left) with a thermal image (right) taken from roughly the same vantage point. The thermal image shows the concentration of hot surface lava near the flow front, as well as areas of surface breakouts on and above the pali.

Left: The amount of channelized lava on the pali has decreased over the past week, but there were still several open channels active today. Right: A closer look at the swiftly moving channelized lava on the pali.

A video of the channelized lava on the pali today.

July 2, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front starting to advance across coastal plain

The flow front remains active and has begun crossing the coastal plain. This afternoon, the flow front was roughly 400 m (0.25 miles) out from the base of the pali, and was 2.9 km (1.8 miles) from the ocean. The front consisted of slabby pāhoehoe, though ʻaʻā was also active at the base of the pali.

Left: A short distance upslope of the leading tip of the flow, the margin was less vigorous and forming more typical pāhoehoe lobes. Right: The activity at the leading tip of the flow was vigorous, with small channels appearing from time to time.

Although the leading tip of the flow consisted of pāhoehoe, visible in the foreground of this photo, there was still ʻaʻā active on the steep slopes of the pali and at the base of the pali (upper part of the photo). The open channels that were active on the pali a few days ago have largely crusted over, but some sections remained active today.

A video of activity at the flow front today.

June 30, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front spreads out at base of pali

The flow front reached the base of the pali yesterday, and over the past day has begun spreading out a short distance onto the coastal plain. Channelized ʻaʻā remains active on the steep portion of the pali, with several parallel channels of swiftly moving lava.

Left: A view looking up the pali, with the channels feeding lava to the flow front, which is spreading out at the base of the pali in the bottom of the photograph. Right: A section of the channelized ʻaʻā, with what appears to be a small surge of lava moving through the channel.

Just above the steep section of the pali, the lava flow transitions from tube-fed pāhoehoe to the open channels that are feeding lava at the flow front.

Left: A look into one of several skylights on the lava tube. The brightest area is the open lava stream. Right: Another skylight opened up in the past few days, exposing a long section of the lava stream.

A video showing the channelized flow near the flow front.

June 29, 2016 — Kīlauea


Flow front reaches base of pali, burning vegetation

The flow front was reaching the base of the pali today, burning vegetation in the adjacent kipuka. The front consisted of ʻaʻā that was fed by a narrow channel extending down the steep section of the pali.

Left: A mango tree is surrounded by the ʻaʻā flow. Right: The flow front as it approaches another mango tree.

The flow front was supplied by a narrow channelized section on the steep portion of the pali.

Left: A close-up of clinker at the flow front. Right: Another view of the flow front, contrasting the hot fluid core of the flow (red) with the brittle clinker (black) that forms the flow exterior.

A video of the flow front moving through vegetation.

June 28, 2016 — Kīlauea


Channelized ʻAʻā flow at top of Pūlama pali

Left: The active lava flow from Puʻu ʻŌʻō was on the slope near the top of the Pūlama pali today, one of the steep escarpments on Kīlauea's southeast flank, and had transitioned into a channelized ʻaʻā flow. The view is to the northwest. Right: This photo shows a closer view of the front of the ʻaʻā flow.

A video of the channelized ʻaʻā forming the flow front, moving swiftly down the pali.

Left: An HVO geologist photographs the front of the channelized ʻaʻā flow. Right: This photo is a view from the edge of the ʻaʻā flow, looking up slope at the flow's channels.

Left: Up close view of the front of the ʻaʻā flow. Right: Close view of ʻaʻā blocks in the channel of the flow.

June 27, 2016 — Kīlauea


Typical lava lake activity at Kīlauea's summit, slowly rising lake level

Spattering was vigorous in the Kīlauea's summit lava lake this evening, but within the range of normal variation. Spatter was thrown up to the level of the floor of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater, about 25 m (80 ft) above the lake surface.
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The lake level has been slowly rising over the past week, and spattering has been visible from the Jaggar Overlook over the past few days. This photograph was taken closer to the lake, on the rim of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater, in an area closed to the public due to volcanic hazards.

Left: A wider view of the lake in Halemaʻumaʻu Crater, looking northeast. Jaggar Museum and HVO are beyond the left edge of the photograph. Spattering was active in the southeast portion of the lake. Right: A typical boundary between crustal plates on the lava lake surface. The plate in the upper left is moving towards the upper left corner of the image.

A video of the spattering in the lava lake at Kīlauea's summit.

June 23, 2016 — Kīlauea


Puʻu ʻŌʻō lava flow continues advancing downslope

The episode 61g flow from Puʻu ʻŌʻō continues advancing downslope. In this photo, the current flow is the lighter color area along the center of the image. The flow front has advanced about 770 m (0.5 miles) since the June 16 overflight, which equates to an advance rate of about 100 m per day (330 ft per day). The flow front was roughly 100 m (330 ft) from the northern boundary of the abandoned Royal Gardens subdivision. Puʻu ʻŌʻō, and its plume, are visible near the top of the image.

Left: The lava pond in the western portion of Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater remains active, and has enlarged since our last observation. The pond today was about 50 m (160 ft) in diameter, with spattering along the western margin. Right: An HVO geologist collects a fresh lava sample for chemical analysis. The lobe being sampled was typical of the many scattered pāhoehoe breakouts along the flow margin today.

HVO geologists conduct a VLF (very low frequency) survey across the episode 61g lava tube to measure the depth and cross-sectional area of lava flowing within the tube.

Left: Incandescent vents are still open on the northeast flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. From the ground, no views of the lava were possible because the area around the vent was too unstable and dangerous to approach. Right: An aerial view of the same vent shown at left provided a look of the lava stream within the deep cavity.

June 16, 2016 — Kīlauea


Puʻu ʻŌʻō lava flow still moving downslope

Left: The active surface flow from Puʻu ʻŌʻō is still advancing slowly downslope and was 4.4 km (2.7 miles) long when mapped today. Averaged over the past six days, the flow has been advancing at a rate of about 200 m (220 yards) per day. At that rate, it will take about 10 days to reach the top of Pūlama pali, which is in the middle distance about 2 km (1.2 miles) farther downslope. The coastal plain and ocean are in the far distance. The active flow is creeping across some of the last-exposed ʻAʻā flows erupted from Puʻu ʻŌʻō in the 1980's. Right: This view is of the front of the active lava flow, looking upslope. Puʻu ʻŌʻō is partly obscured in the clouds at upper left. Most surface activity on the advancing flow is actually where the flow widens, upslope of the flow front.

Left: The uppermost part of the nascent lava tube has several skylights, which reveal the lava stream within the flow, like capillaries beneath the skin. This is the uppermost skylight, just downstream from where the lava broke out from the east flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō on May 24. Right: The lava stream was flowing toward the photographer in this photo. Higher lava levels are preserved in the shelf-like protrusions on the darker orange wall to the left.

Vents on Puʻu ʻŌʻō's northeast flank

Left: Several vents have opened on Puʻu ʻŌʻō's northeast flank since last December. A spatter cone grew over one of the vents in mid-May and is visible at the center of the photo emitting bluish fume. In recent weeks, a vent opened upslope from (to the left of) the spatter cone, revealing bright incandescence. The northeast edge of Puʻu ʻŌʻō's crater, filled with white fume, is to the left of this vent. Right: Though difficult to photograph, aerial views showed that this open vent was but a small window into a large, hot cavity beneath Puʻu ʻŌʻō's northeast flank. Inside, streams of lava from an unseen source (or sources) closer to the crater rim (visible at lower right) were cascading toward the upper left into unknown depths. This view, looking almost straight down, shows the surface of one of these lava streams through the open vent. The ground around this entire area is sunken, corroded, and unstable, and may someday collapse to form a pit.

June 10, 2016 — Kīlauea


Lava flow southeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō

Left: The only active surface lava on Kīlauea's East Rift Zone is the flow that erupted from the lower east flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō on May 24, 2014. This flow continues to advance southeast, and was 3.3 km (2.1 mi) long today (June 10). This photo shows the front of the flow; Puʻu ʻŌʻō is in the background. Right: A closer view of the flow front, with Puʻu ʻŌʻō in the background.

June 2, 2016 — Kīlauea


Views of Puʻu ʻŌʻō and its recent breakouts

Left: View of breakout on northeast flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. The light-colored flows in the foreground are active pāhoehoe flows. The view is to the southeast. Puʻu ʻŌʻō is at upper right. Right: View of recent breakout on east flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō. The flow has advanced about 1.3 km (0.8 miles), but activity today was focused in the middle part of the flow, closer to its vent. The view is to the west.

Left: This photo, looking southwest, shows Puʻu ʻŌʻō in the background, with the northern breakout from May 24 extending to the right, with fume coming from a newly forming tube. The feature in the center foreground is a perched lava pond that formed in July 2014, but was refilled by new lava from the northern breakout in recent days. The breakout point of the eastern breakout is hard to pick out, if you don't know what to look for. It's the lighter colored lava at the left edge of the photo immediately below center. Right: Puʻu ʻŌʻō's current crater subsided by about 10 m (33 ft) in the days following the May 24 breakouts. This view, looking southeast, shows the crater as it was today. HVO webcams are perched on the edge of the Puʻu ʻŌʻō cone (an older crater rim) in the foreground.

Left: Middle: A close-up view of the spatter cone. Right: The ground around the spatter cone was covered in small gobs of spatter and Pele's hair, as shown here.

Left: Middle: A closer view of the skylight on the east breakout. The skylight is about 6 m (20 ft) across, and the lava stream is traveling toward the upper right side of the photo. Right: An even closer view of the skylight (about 6 m or 20 ft across). Again, the lava stream is flowing to the upper right.

Video showing a small channelized flow, as well as the skylight described above, on the breakout on the east flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō.

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