The past week on Kīlauea’s summit has seen widespread eruptive activity across the inner crater floor with no pauses, as the newest volume estimate from the USGS of 64 million cubic meters (17 billion gallons) since September 29 implies a near-doubling of the eruption rate in mid-March. Viewing within Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park continues to be exceptional as seen in this week’s USGS and viewer videos, with continuing changes around the West Vent complex, huge ooze-up lava flows around the inner perimeter of the crater, spattering through the the eastern part of the crater floor. As always we tell the story using monitoring data, media and reports courtesy of the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, including our custom time-lapses produced from their webcams, and discuss viewer questions while annotating the graphics as we go.
We quickly review Maunaloa, dispelling any April Fool’s jokes of activity there, but tracking the actual geophysical data and earthquakes.
In our bonus this week, we follow up on a question about the current lava lake level compared to the 2008 to 2018 Halemaʻumaʻu lava lake, as well as to the conditions in the early 1900s, and use the current eruption rates to calculate projected filling rates for the caldera and how long it would take to fill it to different levels. Finally, this week’s Volcano Watch details the ranking of the 2018 eruption among worldwide events in recent human history.
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