(BIVN) – Kilauea is no longer erupting, and the volcano has been quiet ever since the lava supply to the summit crater ceased on June 19th.
On June 30th, scientists lowered the USGS Volcano Alert Level for Kilauea to ADVISORY, and the aviation color code to YELLOW.
The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reported sulfur dioxide emissions have decreased to near pre-eruption background levels, and seismic activity – including eruptive tremor – has been low since the eruption paused.
Just a day or two after the summit eruption ceased, the observatory uploaded some new video showing the volcanic activity just prior to things going quiet.
That video included these close-up views of the spatter cone built by the eruptive vent on the caldera wall, which was the focus of the eruptive activity towards the end. From this angle, a lava stream can be seen exiting from the base of the cone.
Clear views of the vent were captured on June 16. At one point, geologists estimated that the lava fountain was reaching a height of at least 10 meters, of 33 feet.
Another upload shows footage gathered during an overflight on the same day. Again, eruptive activity is focused at the vent on the southwest wall of the crater.
Eruptive fountaining, recorded on June 18th, appeared even more dramatic in its final day, with lava pouring into a channel at the base of the spatter cone, and spreading onto the crater floor. The eruption paused abruptly around 4 p.m. on Monday, June 19th.
Although Kilauea is presently quiet, scientists say there remains the potential for eruptive activity to resume in the near future, at or near the summit of the volcano, with little or no warning.
In Hilo, miles away from the Kilauea summit, site preparations are underway for a new facility that will monitor volcanoes and support conservation science.
On June 28th, state and federal officials, including the U.S. Secretary of the Interior, attended a traditional ground blessing ceremony for the planned U.S. Geological Survey facility that will be a future home to the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory and the Pacific Island Ecosystems Research Center.
The previous Volcano Observatory, located at the edge of the summit crater, facility was irreparably damaged during the 2018 Kilauea eruption.
The new facility will be located on the University of Hawaii at Hilo campus. It is estimated that construction will be completed in late 2025.
“I’m just grateful to all of our federal partners,” said UH Hilo Chancellor Bonnie Irwin. “We’re creating a whole little research park up here. And so to have the Department of Agriculture, forestry and USGS is going to make really powerful collaboration with our STEM programs here at UH Hilo.”
“I think having the opportunity to co-locate with the university is just going to make it that much easier for our scientists to interact and engage with their colleagues at the university,” said USGS Director David Applegate, “and in particular to be able to tap into the extraordinary students you have here.”