Hawaiian Volcano Observatory

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Aerial view of episode-50 vent and flows on southwest flank Pu`u`O`o, Kilauea Volcano, Hawai`i
Photograph by J.D. Griggs on February 18, 1992
Lava erupts from the episode 50 vents on the southwest flank of Pu`u `O`o cone. When the episode began on February 17, 1992, a fissure about 150 m long opened from the slope of Pu`u `O`o, across flows erupted in 1986 during episode 48. On the morning of the 18th, the fissure was most active along its middle portion ,and flows drowned most of the lower end of the fissure.

Top: Aerial view of pahoehoe flows spreading from the vent on the lower flank of Pu`u `O`o (top right). Flows moved both southwestward (lower left) and northward.

Bottom: View looks southwest from the tephra-covered slope of Pu`u `O`o. The erupting fissure is in line with the episode 48 fissure. In the next six years, many other vents formed on the southwest flank of Pu`u `O`o.

View of episode-50 vent from the southwest flank of Pu`u `O`o, Kilauea Volcano, Hawai`i
Photograph by C. Heliker on February 18, 1992
The opening of the new fissure was accompanied by lowering of the lava pond in Pu`u `O`o. By the morning of February 18, the level of the pond dropped from 40 to about 85 m below the crater rim. The elevation of the new pond was the same as that of the upper end of the erupting fissure. On February 19, however, the pond level rose about 15 m.

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Updated: 18 May 2000 (SRB)