Volcano Hazards Program Office

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Color graphic of geologic map
October 22, 2020

Map of Waiʻōhinu area, Island of Hawaiʻi

Map of Waiʻōhinu area, Island of Hawaiʻi, showing the location of the 3,740 year old age.

October 20, 2020

The story of Yellowstone's ups and downs

Yellowstone Volcano Observatory Scientist-in-Charge Mike Poland visits Yellowstone National Park to tell the story of how the ground there moves up and down over time. This motion has been measured using a variety of techniques over the past 100 years, and from geological mapping scientists can even tell how the ground has moved going back about 15,000 years! This research

Old Faithful bathhouse during 1914-1933 (top) and 1934-1951 (bottom)
October 17, 2020

Old Faithful bathhouse during 1914-1933 (top) and 1934-1951 (bottom)

Old Faithful bathhouse as it appeared in 1914-1933 (top) and 1934-1951 (bottom).

Yellowstone map with rhyolite eruptions highlighted
October 16, 2020

Yellowstone map with rhyolite eruptions highlighted

Map of Yellowstone National Park adapted from Christiansen and others (2007). The pink regions are rhyolite flows erupted within Yellowstone caldera; these flows contain 5% to 15% crystals by volume. The purple region is the Obsidian Cliff flow, which contains close to 0% crystals.

Obsidian Cliff lava flow, Yellowstone
October 16, 2020

Obsidian Cliff lava flow, Yellowstone

Photograph of Obsidian Cliff along Grand Loop Road between Norris and Mammoth Hot Springs. Photograph by John Good, U.S. National Park Service, 1965.

October 1, 2020

Yellowstone Volcano Observatory Monthly Update: October 1, 2020

Mike Poland, Scientist-in-Charge of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, gives an overview of activity at Yellowstone during September 2020.
 

Map of geodetic infrastructure located in Yellowstone National Park
September 30, 2020

Map of geodetic infrastructure located in Yellowstone National Park

The UNAVCO-operated geodetic infrastructure located in Yellowstone National Park consists of over a dozen continuously operating geodetic sites.  Most of these sites stream real-time data to the UNAVCO data center.  After the September 2020 maintenance trip, there are now 8 fully upgraded GNSS sites (red square) located in the park. 

Color photograph of two scientists sampling a volcanic fumarole
September 30, 2020

HVO gas scientists collected helium samples

As part of routine monitoring efforts, HVO gas scientists collected helium samples from fumaroles in the Sulphur Banks, or Ha‘akulamanu, area of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park on September 30, 2020. Helium can pass through the glass of typical gas sampling bottles, so copper tubing is necessary for the specialized sample. Ratios of different helium isotopes tell

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Color photograph of native sulfur crystals
September 30, 2020

Crystals of pure native sulfur at sites of degassing called fumaroles

Different sulfur gases, including sulfur dioxide (SO2) and hydrogen sulfide (H2S), can react with each other to deposit crystals of pure native sulfur at sites of degassing called fumaroles. The crystals picture here formed within a Sulphur Banks area fumarole in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. USGS photo by T. Elias.

Color photograph of yellow native sulfur crystals
September 30, 2020

Close-up image of native sulfur crystals

A close-up image of native sulfur crystals that formed within fumaroles at the Sulphur Banks in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. In addition to sulfur species and other gases, volcanoes emit water vapor. Here, some of the vapor has condensed to liquid water and formed droplets visible on the sulfur crystals. USGS photo by P. Nadeau. 

Photograph of tubing inserted into a fumarole
September 30, 2020

Tubing inserted into a fumarole

Tubing inserted into a fumarole at the Sulphur Banks in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park allows HVO gas scientists to sample gas. The gas travels through the tube into gas sampling bottles for later analyses. USGS photo by M. Warren.

September 23, 2020

Views of Kīlauea's growing summit water lake

A helicopter overflight on September 23, 2020, provided airborne views of the water lake at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano. Visual and thermal images collected during the overflight are used for mapping the slowly enlarging lake. A segment of the video shows the remains of Crater Rim Drive, a portion of which collapsed during the 2018 summit activity. USGS video by M.