It appears my previous post from yesterday regarding Pu’u O’o / Kilauea might not have been too far off from point.
Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii had a fairly large explosion, and lava draining event occur. The explosion sent lava flying in all directions, landing very close to the USGS camera stationed to watch the lavic lake below.
View the webcam feeds here:
HD photo released by the USGS of the area effected by the blast of lava from the lake of magma.
19°25’16” N 155°17’13” W, Summit Elevation 4091 ft (1247 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: WARNING
Current Aviation Color Code: ORANGE
Activity Summary: Kīlauea continued to erupt at its summit and within the East Rift Zone, and gas emissions remained elevated. There was a small amount of net deflation at the summit, and the lava lake fell slightly before leveling off. At the middle East Rift Zone, the June 27th flow remains active but moved no closer to Pāhoa. Active breakouts are scattered across the flow near its front and about mid-way along its length.
June 27th Lava Flow Observations: A Civil Defense overflight this morning found no advancement at the front of the flow, though breakouts remain active immediately upslope. The stalled front is about 1.3 km (0.8 miles) from Apaʻa St/Cemetery Rd, as measured along the steepest-descent line that the flow has been following.
Puʻu ʻŌʻō Observations: No significant change in eruptive activity or ground tilt was recorded at Puʻu ʻŌʻō over the past 24 hours. Seismic tremor has been low and relatively constant. Glow was visible overnight above several outgassing openings in the crater floor. The most recent sulfur-dioxide emission-rate measurement for the East Rift Zone was 450 tonnes per day (from all sources) on October 9, 2014.
Summit Observations: The summit gradually deflated until late yesterday morning. After that, the summit tiltmeter recorded only tiny fluctuations indicating no significant inflation or deflation. The lava lake level fell slightly with the deflation, and then fluctuated between about 60 and 65 m (200–215 ft) below the rim of the Overlook crater (the floor of Halemaʻumaʻu) thereafter, the superficial changes in level caused by variations in spattering on the lake surface.
A visit to Halemaʻumaʻu yesterday to measure lava level discovered fresh spatter (scoria) scattered sparsely around the closed visitor overlook. A review of webcam imagery and seismicity found that a small explosive event occurred yesterday morning (October 19) from the lake surface out of sight below the webcams just after 1 AM. This is a reminder that potentially life-threatening explosive events are still occasionally occurring and happen without warning.
There was no significant change in seismicity beneath Kīlauea over the past day. Seismic tremor beneath the summit remained low and varied with changes in spattering on the surface of the lava lake. GPS receivers spanning the summit caldera recorded about 5 cm (2 in) of extension between early May and early July. Since then, little significant extension or contraction has occurred. The most recent sulfur-dioxide emission rate measurements for the summit were 3,600–5,200 tonnes/day (see caveat below) for the week ending September 30, 2014. A small amount of particulate material was carried aloft by the plume, in addition to the sparse scoria deposited by yesterday morning’s explosive event.
Sulfur Dioxide Emission Rate estimation caveat: Starting in 2014, we report the emission rate estimated by a new, more accurate method. The numbers increase by a factor of 2-4 but the actual emission rate has not changed. For more on this reporting change, please read http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/volcanowatch/view.php?id=207
Summit The summit lava lake is within an elliptical crater (unofficially called the Overlook crater), which has dimensions of approximately 160 m (520 ft) by 210 m (690 ft), inset within the eastern portion of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater. The lake level has varied from about 25 m to more than 200 m (out of sight) below the floor of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater. The Overlook crater has been more-or-less continuously active since it opened during a small explosive event on March 19, 2008. The lake level responds to summit tilt changes with the lake generally receding during deflation and rising during inflation. Since 2013, the lava level has been typically between 30 m (100 ft) and 60 m (200 ft) below the floor of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater. Small collapses in the Overlook crater are common, and over time have resulted in a gradual enlargement of the Overlook crater. The ambient SO2 concentrations near the vent vary greatly, but are persistently higher than 10 ppm and frequently exceed 50 ppm (upper limit of detector) during moderate trade winds. The gas plume typically includes a small amount of ash-sized tephra (mostly fresh spatter bits and Pele’s hair from the circulating lava lake). The heaviest pieces are deposited onto nearby surfaces while the finer bits can be carried several kilometers before dropping out of the plume.
East Rift Zone vents and flow field The eruption in Kīlauea’s middle East Rift Zone started with a fissure eruption on January 3, 1983, and continued with few interruptions at Puʻu ʻŌʻō Cone, or temporarily from vents within a few kilometers to the east or west. A fissure eruption on the upper east flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō Cone on Sept. 21, 2011, drained the lava lakes and fed a lava flow (Peace Day flow) that advanced southeast through the abandoned Royal Gardens subdivision to the ocean within Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park in early December 2011. The flows stalled and re-entered the ocean starting on November 24, 2012, until activity started to decline and the ocean entry ceased in August 20, 2013; the flow was dead by early November, 2013. The Kahaualeʻa flow, which started from the spatter cone/lava lake at the northeast edge of the Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater floor in mid-January 2013 was dead by late April, but a new flow (informally called Kahaualeʻa 2) became active in the same area in early May 2013, waxing with inflation and waning with deflation. The Kahaualeʻa 2 flow died following the onset of a new breakout from the northeast flank of Puʻu ʻŌʻō on June 27, 2014. The June 27th flow advanced to the northeast, confined to old grounds cracks for part of its length, and has been slowly approaching the town of Pāhoa.
East Rift Zone vents and flow field Lava flows from the June 27 breakout pose no immediate threat to residential areas. Near-vent areas could erupt or collapse without warning with spatter and/or ash being wafted within the gas plume. In addition, potentially-lethal concentrations of sulfur dioxide gas may be present within 1 km downwind of vent areas. Active lava flows within forested areas can produce methane blasts capable of propelling rocks and other debris into the air. All recently active lava flows are within Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park and adjacent State land managed by the Department of Land and Natural Resources or the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.
Kīlauea Crater Ash and Pele’s hair can be carried several kilometers downwind, and potentially-lethal concentrations of sulfur dioxide can be present within 1 km downwind.
East Rift Zone flow field The June 27th lava flow is currently within the Kahaualeʻa Natural Area Reserve, which has been closed by the Hawaii State Department of Natural Land and Resources (DLNR) due to the ongoing volcanic hazards (http://dlnr.hawaii.gov/ecosystems/nars/reserves/hawaii-island/kahaualea/), and the Wao Kele o Puna Forest Reserve, also closed by DLNR and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (http://dlnr.hawaii.gov/blog/2014/09/12/nr14-113/). According to the Hawaii County Civil Defense website (http://www.hawaiicounty.gov/active-alerts/): “The public is reminded that the flow is not visible and cannot be accessed from any public areas.”
Puʻu ʻŌʻō Cone and Kīlauea Crater These areas are within Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park; Park access and viewing information can be found at http://www.nps.gov/havo/planyourvisit/lava2.htm.