June 25: Ahulanui Ponds May Be Next

Today’s Eruption Summary

Fissure 8 is status quo. Today’s HVO Kiluaea status report says its cone is now 180feet tall. Its flow front has broadened southwards, widening to two miles, moving south on shore as well as continuing to expand offshore (lava delta acreage: ~405). The main channel/ocean entry remains on the southern side of the front, with minor entries in a 1-kilometer zone.

The lava Fissure 22 is weakly active; no activity observed at 16/18.

USGS: “This animated gif shows the fissure 8 tephra (cinder and spatter) cone morphology changes between June 15 and 24, 2018. During this time a shoulder grew on the channel side of the cone as the vent shifted from being two distinct fountains to three, then to a single source of voluminous roiling. The cone height is about 47 m (154 ft) from the hardened lava surface on which it was built.” Note: This isn’t a webcam but a temporary camera they set up; they have to download pictures manually. (Full-sized)

According to Mike Zoeller (UHI) at today’s 11AM conference call, the lava delta is advancing at less than 50m/day; it was 200/day a week ago.  The southern edge of the flow is a kilometer from Ahalanui Beach Park. Over the weekend, he observed top lava speeds of 25kph (15.5mph); Leslie Gordon (USGS) saw it max out at 35kph (21.75mph) last Friday night.

USGS: “USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geology field crews maintain watch over the eruptive activity in the lower East Rift Zone and at Kīlauea’s summit. Here, a geologist documents the behavior of lava as it exits the Fissure 8 cone. Lava enters the upper channel traveling as fast as 30 km/hour (18 mi/hour).” (Full-sized)

After yesterday’s collapse explosion at 4:12, seismicity dropped from a high of 25-35 quakes an hour down to less than 10,  but had started to creep up again and was averaging 30 by dawn. On the livestream, I observed clouds of ash/dust in the crater’s interior at various times during the day. Today’s collapse explosion occurred at 5:03pm, equivalent of a 5.3, ash-poor plume rising less than 2000 feet.

Jun 24: chasing rainbows and lava with Mick Kalber. He was checking on a lava spillover uncomfortably near his house!  (Helicopter noise)

Reminder: HVO downgraded Kilauea’s aviation alert to ORANGE last night, because ash explosions have rarely risen above 10,000 feet since May.

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