Photo and Video Chronology – Kīlauea – May 7, 2021

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Kīlauea's summit eruption continues on the Island of Hawai‘i; Halema‘uma‘u west vent erupts lava into the lava lake, which was 228 m (748 ft) deep this morning, May 7. Gas emissions and seismic activity at the summit remain elevated. HVO field crews—equipped with specialized safety gear—monitor the eruption from within the closed area of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park with NPS permission.

HVO scientists collect detailed data to assess hazards and understand how the eruption is evolving at Kīlauea's summit, all of which are shared with the National Park Service and emergency managers. Access to this hazardous area is by permission from, and in coordination with, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.

May 7, 2021 — Kīlauea

View of the active portion of lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u - Kīlauea, May 7 2021

Color photograph of lava lake

The lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea, remains active, as seen in this view looking northwest. The active surface lava area continues to decrease in size, and activity is weaker, with only occasional localized surface foundering. Incandescent lava is confined to area between western fissure complex (left center) and the main island (lower right). Small landslides continue to erode the western fissure complex structure, lowering the height of the spatter cone, currently 17 meters (56 feet) high above the active lave source. USGS photo taken by N. Deligne on May 7, 2021.

(Public domain.)

May 6, 2021 — Kīlauea

Close-up view of active western portion of Halema‘uma‘u lava lake, May 6, 2021

Color photograph of lava lake

This close-up view of the active western portion of the Halema‘uma‘u lava lake at the summit of Kīlauea was captured on Thursday, May 6 through the lens of a laser rangefinder used by HVO scientists to measure distances to features within the crater. HVO scientists observed that the area immediately surrounding the inlet to the lava lake (above-center) was slightly perched relative to the rest of the active surface, and it was intermittently feeding lava channels to lower-lying parts of the lake (below-center and below-right). The western fissure is out-of-view to the upper-left and the main island in the lava lake is out-of-view to the right. USGS image.

(Public domain.)

Color photograph of lava lake

View of the active surface lava in the western portion of Halema‘uma‘u, at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano. The west vent (upper left) continues to erupt lava into the lava lake through an inlet near the base of the cone. The active lava lake surface area has decreased in size over the past two weeks since the northeast (right) and southwest (left) surface has been solidifying. This photo was taken from the southern rim of Halema‘uma‘u, in an area of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park that remains closed to the public due to safety reasons. USGS photo taken by L. DeSmither on May 6, 2021.

(Public domain.)