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Lava Level Change in PKK Tube Skylight (June 11, 2006)

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Detailed Description

To document changes in the lava stream level within the Prince Kuhio Kalaniana'ole (PKK) lava tube, a time-lapse camera was placed on the brink of a lava tube skylight (an opening in the roof of the lava tube) with a view of the lava. This skylight was informally called the Petunia skylight because short, lobate lava flows, looking like petals on a flower, had emerged from and chilled around the skylight. The camera successfully captured several abrupt and short-lived increases in lava stream level that eventually sealed the skylight shut. This video shows one of these brief increases in lava level. Note how a standing wave forms on the surface of the lava stream as the level begins to rise. With further lava stream rise, the standing wave gives way to a turbulent surface with the wave appearing to roll back upstream and culminates in a nearly stationary, bubbling surface just below the mouth of the skylight. As the level drops, the lava stream reverses back through each of these stages.

The images that comprise this video were acquired by a time-lapse camera. The image acquisition rate was 1 frame per minute, and the resulting video is played at 10 frames per second.




Public Domain.