Kīlauea Volcano Eruption Continues, Crater Lake Covers 54 Acres
Kīlauea continues to erupt at its summit from two vents on the north and northwest sides of the Halemaʻumaʻu crater, according to scientists with the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. The USGS HVO reports that as of late Tuesday afternoon, the growing crater lake was 470 feet deep with a surface area of 54 acres.
According to the HVO, summit tiltmeters continued to record steady deflationary tilt. Sulfur dioxide emission rates remain high estimated at around 30,000 tonnes/day as measured on Monday, Dec. 21. Seismicity remained elevated but stable, with a few minor earthquakes and tremor fluctuations related to the vigor of fissure fountaining, according to HVO scientists.
“Of the three vents that erupted Sunday evening (Dec. 20) from the north and northwest walls of Halemaʻumaʻu, two remained active on Wednesday morning. The west vent, which is located on the lowest down-dropped block within Halemaʻumaʻu crater, is feeding two narrow channels into the lake. The north vent remains the most vigorous,” according to HVO reports.
Webcam views of the lava lake can be found here: https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/multimedia_webcams.html.
“High levels of volcanic gas, rockfalls, explosions, and volcanic glass particles are the primary hazards of concern regarding this new activity at Kīlauea’s summit,” according to today’s HVO update.
Health officials say vog conditions and sulfur dioxide (SO₂) air levels may increase and fluctuate in various areas of the state.
The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory continues to closely monitor Kīlauea’s seismicity, deformation, and gas emissions for any sign of reactivation, and maintains visual surveillance of the summit and the East Rift Zone.