VIDEO: Hawaii volcano summit a cauldron of lava

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Bright glow visible from overlook at night

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii - Video courtesy USGS

Another amazing view of Kilauea’s activity has been captured by scientists of the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.

Once again filmed using thermal imaging in order to peak through the plume of gas billowing from the Halema’uma’u vent, geologists have released a new look at the volcano: that of a churning cauldron of lava.

The USGS has been providing the public with lots of different videos of the lava lake inside the summit vent since the new eruption tore a hole in Halema’uma’u in 2008. The dramatic quality of the videos has increased over the months, thanks in part to the ever widening vent opening, which grows with every rock tumble and wall collapse.

About the latest video, according to the USGS:

The lava surface is about 70 meters (230 ft) wide, and remains about 200 meters (660 ft) below the cavity rim. The surface is mostly crusted, with a slow migration from north to south. Small spattering sources occasionally break through the thin crust. Just a few minutes after this video was taken, violent degassing and spattering ensued, disrupting the entire lava surface, and the lava level dropped about 20 meters (66 ft).

The HVO also reports that a the evening glow from the vent is especially bright lately, and is easily visible from the Jaggar Museum Overlook. The HVO says that at about noon on Sunday, the lava surface inside the floor of Halema`uma`u Crater, began “a sustained period of cyclic rising and falling, with cycles occurring every 10-20 minutes. The activity was accompanied by the usual bursts of seismic tremor and oscillatory ground tilt.”

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