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Volcano Science Center

The Volcano Science Center is the primary center serving the mission of the USGS Volcano Hazards Program — to enhance public safety and minimize social and economic disruption from volcanic unrest and eruption. The center is home to the five US volcano observatories with offices in Anchorage, Alaska; Menlo Park and Mountain View, California; Vancouver, Washington; and Hilo, Hawaii.



A glimpse into Yellowstone Lake’s past environment


Better understanding what’s under your feet in hydrothermal areas—neutral to alkaline hot springs edition


Yellowstone—the year 2021 in review


From anecdotes to quantification: advances in characterizing volcanic eruption impacts on the built environment

Over the past 20 years, our understanding of volcanic eruption impacts on the built environment has transformed from being primarily observational with small datasets to one grounded in field investigations, laboratory experiments, and quantitative modeling, with an emphasis on stakeholder collaboration and co-creation. Here, we summarize key advances and knowledge gaps of impacts across volcanic

Strengthening local volcano observatories through global collaborations

We consider the future of volcano observatories in a world where new satellite technologies and global data initiatives have greatly expanded over the last two decades. Observatories remain the critical tie between the decision-making authorities and monitoring data. In the coming decade, the global scientific community needs to continue to collaborate in a manner that will strengthen volcano obse

Crater growth and lava-lake dynamics revealed through multitemporal terrestrial lidar scanning at Kīlauea Volcano, Hawaiʻi

Lava lake surfaces display the tops of active magma columns and respond to eruption variables such as magmatic pressure, convection, degassing, and cooling, as well as interactions with the craters that contain them. However, they are challenging to study owing to the numerous hazards that accompany these eruptions, and they are typically difficult to observe because the emitted gas plumes obscure