Report on Kilauea (United States) — 16 February-22 February 2022
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
16 February-22 February 2022
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2022. Report on Kilauea (United States). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 16 February-22 February 2022. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
19.421°N, 155.287°W; summit elev. 1222 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
HVO reported that lava effusion at the vent of the main cone in the lower W wall of Kilauea’s Halema`uma`u Crater continued at variable rates during 16-22 February. Effusion from the vent was very low or had paused from around 0000 on 16 February until about 0230 on 17 February. After another drop, the effusion rate was relatively stable at least through 22 February. The lake level fluctuated through the week, likely reflecting the lava supply along with periods of inflation and deflation. Short-lived lava ooze-outs were visible along the W margins of the lava lake and small flows from the W vent traveled S and W during 20-22 February. The Aviation Color Code and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Orange and Watch, respectively.
Geological Summary. Kilauea overlaps the E flank of the massive Mauna Loa shield volcano in the island of Hawaii. Eruptions are prominent in Polynesian legends; written documentation since 1820 records frequent summit and flank lava flow eruptions interspersed with periods of long-term lava lake activity at Halemaumau crater in the summit caldera until 1924. The 3 x 5 km caldera was formed in several stages about 1,500 years ago and during the 18th century; eruptions have also originated from the lengthy East and Southwest rift zones, which extend to the ocean in both directions. About 90% of the surface of the basaltic shield volcano is formed of lava flows less than about 1,100 years old; 70% of the surface is younger than 600 years. The long-term eruption from the East rift zone between 1983 and 2018 produced lava flows covering more than 100 km2, destroyed hundreds of houses, and added new coastline.