HVO Status Report 20180811_1007

Subject: HVO Status Report 20180811_1007

U.S. Geological Survey
Saturday, August 11, 2018, 10:07 AM HST (Saturday, August 11, 2018, 20:07 UTC)


19°25’16” N 155°17’13” W, Summit Elevation 4091 ft (1247 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: WARNING
Current Aviation Color Code: ORANGE

Kīlauea Volcano Lower East Rift Zone (LERZ)

During an overflight of the LERZ this morning (August 11) two small ponds of lava were observed in the Fissure 8 cone. One pond is crusted over and stagnant, the other is incandescent and sluggishly convecting. A gas plume billows up from Fissure 8; low-level steaming from a handful of the other fissures (inactive) is intermittent. Lava is oozing at several points along the coastline creating wispy laze plumes.

Although the lull in LERZ activity continues, it is common for eruptions to go through periods of diminished output, or to pause completely, only to return with renewed vigor days or weeks later, or longer. Resumption of the activity on the LERZ could occur at any time, and residents should remain informed and heed Hawaii County Civil Defense messages and warnings.

Kīlauea Gas Emissions

SO2 emissions from the summit, Pu῾u ῾Ō῾ō , and the Lower East Rift Zone are all at low levels. LERZ emissions on August 5-6 were ~ 200 tons/day; Pu῾u ῾Ō῾ō emissions on August 6-7 were 200-300 tons/day, and Summit emissions when last measured on July 19 were around 100 tons/day. This SO2 release represents the lowest SO2 emitted from Kīlauea for over a decade.

Despite the low emission rates, SO2 plumes were blown toward populated areas in east Hawai‘i by SE winds on August 9, and many individuals reported detecting the smell of sulfur. Weather conditions contributed to this, but in addition, as the eruption vents cool down, small amounts of H2S are generated. The human nose can detect H2S at very low levels, adding to the overall perception of increased sulfur emission.

Kīlauea Volcano Summit

It has been over a week since the most recent collapse event at the summit on August 2. Summit seismicity continues to be low, with only 2-3 located earthquakes occurring per hour (maximum magnitude of M2.0). Summit deflation is negligible.

HVO will continue to monitor Kīlauea closely for any signs of change in activity.

The next status report will be issued tomorrow morning unless significant changes occur.


Subscribe to these messages: https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/vns2/

Webcam images: https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/multimedia_webcams.html

Photos/Video: https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/multimedia_chronology.html

Lava Flow Maps: https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/multimedia_maps.html

Definitions of terms used in update: https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/volcanoes/kilauea/extra/definitions.pdf

Overview of Kīlauea summit (Halemaʻumaʻu) and East Rift Zone (Puʻu ʻŌʻō ) eruptions:

Summary of volcanic hazards from Kīlauea eruptions:

Recent Earthquakes in Hawai’i (map and list):

Explanation of Volcano Alert Levels and Aviation Color Codes:



The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory is one of five volcano observatories within the U.S. Geological Survey and is responsible for monitoring volcanoes and earthquakes in Hawai`i.

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