Kilauea volcano (Hawai'i): strong seismic swarm suggests magma intrusion at shallow depth, alert level raised

Tue, 24 Aug 2021, 17:41
17:41 PM | BY: T
Recent quakes under the caldera of Hawai'i's Kilauea volcano
Recent quakes under the caldera of Hawai'i's Kilauea volcano
An intense earthquake swarm is in progress under the southern part of the Kilauea caldera, prompting the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) to raise the alert status to "orange", as the earthquakes might indicate that magma is intruding at shallow depths and might lead to a new eruption in the near future.
The seismic swarm began on the evening of Aug 23, 2021, and is currently continuing. During the past 24 hours, there were more than 140 quakes detected in total, including 41 quakes of magnitudes 2.0 or higher. Most tremors occurred at shallow depths around 2-3 km under the surface.
A particularly strong sequence of earthquakes occurred at about 1:30 a.m., HST local time, with a magnitude 3.6 event at 1.36 a.m.
The Hawaiian reported that "The onset of the earthquake swarm was coincident with a change in the style of ground deformation at tiltmeters in the Kīlauea summit region, potentially indicating the shallow movement of magma beneath the south part of Kīlauea caldera."
"HVO will continue to monitor this activity closely and adjust the alert level accordingly."

Previous news

Thu, 8 Jul 2021, 07:07
River of lava during the 2018 Leilani eruption of Kilauea volcano, Hawaii
Hawaii resident Rae Raelyn Scachette, enrolled as geology student at Honolulu Community College kindly sent us an account of her personal experience with the 2018 eruption of Kilauea. ... Read all
Wed, 16 Jun 2021, 04:26
This Unoccupied Aircraft Systems (UAS) photo, looking straight down into the inactive western fissure within Halema‘uma‘u at the summit of Kīlauea, was captured on Thursday, June 3, 2021. One of the objectives of the UAS mission was to get a close-up look into the fissure to see if any incandescent lava was still visible. As evidenced by the darkness within the opening atop the fissure (center of frame), no active lava was observed. For scale, the height and width of this photo each span approximately 40 m (131 ft) laterally. (USGS image & caption.)
A third week of relative quiet passes on Kīlauea, though earthquakes remain slightly elevated near the volcano's summit, upper east rift, and nearby south flank. No glow is visible from the recent eruption's West Vent, nor from the crusted lava lake surface, though temperatures from the vent and a handful of small spots “around the rim and in local cavities” remain hotter than their surroundings, though still well below molten lava temperatures according to this week's USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory update. ... Read all
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