June 11: USGS Conference Call: What’s Causing Summit Explosions?

Once again the USGS media conference call at 11AM is full of so much juicy info I’ve moved it to a separate post rather than make my daily digest 10 pages long.

July 10, 2017 HVO webcam panorama of Halema’umau compared with June 10, 2018. (Click for Full-sized)

BigIslandVideo hasn’t put their edited/abridged version up, which they usually enhance with recent video footage. But they cut a lot of the Q&A anyway.

Below are my paraphrase/notes on the full, unabridged conference call (I skipped a non-geology questions where answer is “Agency X handles that; ask them.”]

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March 19, 2018: Ten Year Anniversary of Lava Lake in Halema’uma’u Crater

Today marked the ten-year anniversary of the opening of the “Overlook Vent” lava lake within Halemaʻumaʻu Crater at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano.

2008 and 2018 views of the “Overlook vent” lava lake within Halema’uma’u Crater.

From March 19 post of HVO’s Photo & Video Chronology archive:

Today marks the 10th anniversary of the eruption within Halema‘uma‘u at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano. When thevent first opened on March 19, 2008, it formed a small pit about 115 feet (35 m) wide. Over the past decade, that pit (informally called the “Overlook crater”) has grown into a gaping hole about 919 feet by 656 feet (280 x 200 m) in size. Click on the above webcam images to watch the growth of Overlook crater over the past 10 years.

That post also shared a slideshow of the lava lake’s formation and widening over a ten-year period:

Timelapses of Kīlauea Summit, Week of March 19

These were taken from HVO’s webcams, which at the time had been capturing images of the caldera and lava lake (“Overlook Vent”) every ten minutes for years. They give you a sense of what “normal” was for Kīlauea prior to the start of this eruption:

Views into the lava lake from two webcams that were some of the first casualties of this eruption:

At the time, there was no summit livestream.  Webcams were plenty to keep up with the day-to-day fluctuations.

USGS Video: History of Lava Lake (20 minutes)

Dr. Matt Patrick (USGS) reviews the ten year history of the overlook vent lava lake. Around 8:55 the camera pans around to show the entire lake and other parts of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater. These are some of the last views of it prior to changes in May 2018.

Wind noise makes him a little hard to hear. The USGS also posted this video on their own multimedia library. Since their server sometimes times out, let me include the transcript below.

Continue reading March 19, 2018: Ten Year Anniversary of Lava Lake in Halema’uma’u Crater