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Report on Kilauea (United States) — 12 March-18 March 2003


Kilauea

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
12 March-18 March 2003
Managing Editor: Gari Mayberry

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2003. Report on Kilauea (United States). In: Mayberry, G (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 12 March-18 March 2003. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Weekly Report (12 March-18 March 2003)

Kilauea

United States

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

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


During 11-18 March at Kilauea, lava flowed into the sea at moderate levels at the West Highcastle entry. Many surface lava flows were visible along the Kohala lava flow. Tongues of lava were visible traveling down Pulama pali that were a part of the activity that began on 12 May 2002 (named the Mother's Day flow). Generally, seismicity remained at normal levels, with the long-lasting swarm of long-period earthquakes and tremor at Kilauea's summit, which began last June, continuing at moderate levels. Only small deformation changes were recorded.

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.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)