Skip to comments.Geology Picture of the Week, Sep. 7-13, 2008: "Breaking": Lava in Halemaumau (Kilauea, Hawaii)
Posted on 09/09/2008 11:24:37 AM PDT by cogitator
Background: Several months ago, a vent opened explosively in Halemaumau, the crater inside the caldera of Kileaua volcano. Halemaumau used to be famous (notably due to a description from Mark Twain) as the location of a lava lake, fairly easily accessible by visitors. The lava lake disappeared in 1924 during a series of explosive phreatic eruptions (steam and hot rock). The lake has appeared briefly since then, such as in 1967.
Famous photo of explosive eruption from Halemaumau
The new vent has been producing a steady cloud of SO2 (occasionally irritating residents on Oahu) since it opened. There have been occasional explosions, and activity picked up a bit last week. And the news is now, a helicopter overflight glimpsed the lake of lava deep in the vent that is causing all this. That's the picture and the movie below. So there's a chance the Halemaumau crater could fill with lava again.
Or not. The flank crater Pu'u O'o which has been the source of Kileaua's main lava outflow (and from which lava flows are still emanating as they head to the sea) hosted a lava lake for a few days several months ago. Then it drained. So it will be interesting to see what happens next with Halemaumau.
Link to Quicktime movie
** ping **
Its’ obvious this is Palins’ fault.
And you did well posting it! :-)
Mother Nature continues to impress me with her majesty.
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