VIDEO: Kilauea volcano summit lava lake churns

By David Corrigan and Stephanie Salazar

[Video courtesy USGS-Hawaiian Volcano Observatory]

HAWAII VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK, Hawaii: January is Volcano Awareness Month on Hawaii Island and 2012 also marks the 100th anniversary of the U.S. Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.

So why not share some of the latest mesmerizing lava lake video, from the fiery pit of Halemau’ma’u on the summit of Kilauea.

This footage shows vigorous spattering along the south margin of the Halema`uma`u lava lake. Lava is upwelling in the northern portion of the lake which is out of view, and slowly migrates to this southern margin where it sinks back into the conduit.

According to the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory’s Kilauea status report for Thursday the spattering sink on the southeastern edge of lake continued building a small spatter rampart and feeding very small lava flows on the inner ledge. The lava level is estimated to be 260 feet below the floor of Halema`uma`u Crater.

The HVO also says the most recent sulfur dioxide emission rate measurement was 1,500 tonnes per day on January 22… new measurements must await the return of moderate trade winds, scientists say.

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