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Report on Kilauea (United States) — 13 December-19 December 2000


Kilauea

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
13 December-19 December 2000
Managing Editor: Gari Mayberry

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2000. Report on Kilauea (United States). In: Mayberry, G (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 13 December-19 December 2000. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Weekly Report (13 December-19 December 2000)

Kilauea

United States

19.421°N, 155.287°W; summit elev. 1222 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


Lava flowed into the sea at the Kamokuna entry until 17 December. From the 17th until the 19th of December (the end of the report period) no lava was observed flowing into the sea. During the week several `a`a flows were visible traveling down Pulama pali. Overall, earthquake activity was low across the island. Volcanic tremor was at normal levels near Pu`u `O`o and beneath Kilauea caldera. A tiltmeter near HVO showed slight deflation the morning of 19 December, while all other tiltmeters on Kilauea showed flat signals.

Geological Summary. Kilauea, which overlaps the E flank of the massive Mauna Loa shield volcano, has been Hawaii's most active volcano during historical time. Eruptions are prominent in Polynesian legends; written documentation extending back to only 1820 records frequent summit and flank lava flow eruptions that were interspersed with periods of long-term lava lake activity that lasted until 1924 at Halemaumau crater, within the summit caldera. The 3 x 5 km caldera was formed in several stages about 1500 years ago and during the 18th century; eruptions have also originated from the lengthy East and SW rift zones, which extend to the sea on both sides of the volcano. About 90% of the surface of the basaltic shield volcano is formed of lava flows less than about 1100 years old; 70% of the volcano's surface is younger than 600 years. A long-term eruption from the East rift zone that began in 1983 has produced lava flows covering more than 100 km2, destroying nearly 200 houses and adding new coastline to the island.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)