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Report on Kilauea (United States) — 20 September-26 September 2006


Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
20 September-26 September 2006
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2006. Report on Kilauea (United States). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 20 September-26 September 2006. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Weekly Report (20 September-26 September 2006)


United States

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

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

Throughout 20-26 September Kilauea continued to erupt from the Pu`u `O`o vent on the East Rift Zone. Summit inflation centered in the south part of the caldera also continued. Lava was flowing through the PKK lava tube from its source on the SW flank of Pu`u `O`o to the ocean. About 1 km S of Pu`u `O`o, the Campout flow branches off from the PKK tube. The PKK and Campout systems feed two widely separated ocean entries named East Lae`apuki and East Ka`ili`ili, respectively. Activity during this period included numerous small breakouts from the Campout flow, new skylights along the PKK tube, and variable activity at the ocean entries. At Pu`u `O`o, intermittent lava incandescence reflected on gas plumes was visible from the usual four vents (East Pond, January, South Wall Complex, and Drainhole).

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)