Kilauea volcano update: Lava Lake Continues Crusting

Tue, 4 May 2021, 20:06
20:06 PM | BY: PO
A visual comparison of the area of active surface lava over the past two weeks. (Image: Matt Patrick, USGS-HVO)
A visual comparison of the area of active surface lava over the past two weeks. (Image: Matt Patrick, USGS-HVO)
A thermal comparison of the active surface lava over the past two weeks. (Image: Matt Patrick, USGS-HVO)
A thermal comparison of the active surface lava over the past two weeks. (Image: Matt Patrick, USGS-HVO)
In the past two weeks, Kīlauea's lava lake has crusted over nearly half of its active lava surface while gas emissions remain low, and yet the volcano continues to erupt at a low level.

Our updated estimates based on USGS imagery and map area calculations suggest close to a 50% reduction in the open lava lake surface over the past two weeks. Gas emissions over the past week ranged from 250-475 tonnes/day, similar to the previous week and less than half of the prior average during February and March.

Deflation-inflation cycles continue frequently, and as a result the lava level within the lake has only varied slightly from its unchanged average level of 227 m (745 ft). Still no no ooze-up flows observed along the lake's perimeter, next to the crater walls, over the past 3 weeks now.



Latest on Kīlauea, Eruption Day 135, Week 19:

-Active lake surface further reduced by crusting, with the 2-week total in the range of 45-50% by our unofficial estimates.

-GPS shows continued caldera spreading, with extension rate reverting back to recent average as a likely result of DI cycles.

-Seismic activity also has kept within background levels, this past week focused mainly around the summit.


Join our weekly live video review of Kīlauea's eruption! Broadcast at 5pm HST Tuesdays and archived, along with short video updates, on the Hawaiʻi PODD channel - including monitoring signals, photos & videos, time-lapses, geologic context and annotation, and discussion of live viewer questions.

#Kilauea2021

Source: Compilation and summary of USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory activity updates & online data, April-May 2021

Previous news

Tue, 27 Apr 2021, 18:39
On Thursday, April 22, HVO scientists observed the ongoing eruption at the Kīlauea summit from the south rim of Halema‘uma‘u. This photo shows the active western portion of the lava lake, which appears to be in the process of shrinking again, with its northeast (upper-right) and southwest (lower-left) ends crusting over substantially. For scale, the distance from the western fissure (upper-left) to the nearest part of the main island in the lake (lower-right) is approximately 180 m or 590 ft. USGS image.
Kīlaueaʻs open lava lake surface has shrunk by almost 25% over the past week, and gas emissions decreased as low lava output continues. ... Read all
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