Volcano Hazards Program Office

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Color photograph of island in  lava lake
February 22, 2021

February 22, 2021 — Kīlauea

This photo shows the main island, just west of the lake center, in Halema‘uma‘u lava lake at the summit of Kīlauea. The recent drop in lake level, associated with ongoing summit deflation, is shown by the raised edge around much of the perimeter of the island. USGS photo by M. Patrick.

Color photograph of crater, lava lake, and rainbow
February 22, 2021

February 22, 2021 — Kīlauea

A pot of lava at the end of the rainbow? A rainbow formed over Halema‘uma‘u crater following an afternoon rain shower on February 22. Rainbows are often observed over Halema‘uma‘u, as mist and rain move across the caldera. This photo was taken from within an area of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park that remains closed to the public for safety reasons. HVO scientists

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Color photograph of volcanic vent,  lava lake, and islands
February 22, 2021

February 22, 2021 — Kīlauea

The lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea, remains active. Active surface lava remains limited to the western portion of the lake, shown here. Ongoing summit deflation has been associated with a slight drop in the lake level, now a few meters below the rim of the levee. The western fissure cone is in the upper left corner of the photo, and inlet where

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February 22, 2021

February 22, 2021 — Kīlauea

An HVO geologist uses a sketch in their fieldbook to note the location of laser rangefinder measurements of the lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea. Using the laser rangefinder, HVO geologists can derive the elevation of various spots on the lava lake surface, and are able to track how the elevation of features within the lava lake change over time.

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HVO geologists use a laser rangefinder to measure the distance to the Halema‘uma‘u lava lake
February 19, 2021

Halema‘uma‘u lava lake observations, Kīlauea summit February 19

HVO geologists use a laser rangefinder to measure the distance to the Halema‘uma‘u lava lake, and other eruptive features, at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano. These lava lake measurements are used to help calculate the depth, volume, and how it has evolved throughout the eruption. The stagnant eastern portion of the lava lake is visible in the lower-left. USGS photo taken by

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The lava lake within Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea, remains active.
February 17, 2021

Views of Kīlauea's summit lava lake on February 17

The lava lake within Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea, remains active. The active lava was retained by a levee several meters (yards) high along the west margin. The levee is formed from numerous small rafted crustal plates that have stacked upon one another, and likely fused together. USGS photo taken by M. Patrick on February 17, 2021.

This photo shows a close-up of the inlet along the western margin of the lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at Kīlauea summit
February 17, 2021

Views of Kīlauea's summit lava lake on February 17

This photo shows a close-up of the inlet along the western margin of the lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano. Lava originating at the small upwelling zone rapidly develops a thin flexible crust as it moves away from the source. A small island also has been present just south of the inlet. USGS photo taken by M. Patrick on February 17, 2021.

Active surface lava has been limited to the western portion of the lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea
February 17, 2021

Views of Kīlauea's summit lava lake on February 17

Active surface lava has been limited to the western portion of the lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea. This photo shows a large portion of this western zone. The surface is composed of a patchwork of small, angular crustal plates separated by darker spreading zones. USGS photo taken by M. Patrick on February 17, 2021.

Lava continues to erupt from the west vent in Halema‘uma‘u, at the summit of Kīlauea
February 17, 2021

Spatter visible at the west vent on Wednesday morning, February 17

Lava continues to erupt from the west vent in Halema‘uma‘u, at the summit of Kīlauea. On Wednesday morning, February 17, small pieces of spatter were occasionally ejected from the vent, landing on the slope below. This type of activity has decreased significantly over the past several weeks. Lava from the west vent continues to enter the lava lake at an inlet near the base

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February 17, 2021

Lava Enters Halema‘uma‘u Lava Lake, Kīlauea Summit (Feb 17, 2021)

This video shows a close-up of the small inlet where lava enters the lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea. The inlet consists of a small upwelling zone, with lava rapidly developing a thin flexible crust as it moves away from the source.

Overflight photo of erupting western fissure in Halema‘uma‘u, February 16, 2021
February 16, 2021

Overflight photo of western fissure in Halema‘uma‘u—Kīlauea summit

This photo of the erupting western fissure in Halema‘uma‘u at the summit of Kīlauea was captured during a helicopter overflight on the morning of Tuesday, February 16. The degassing cone was not visibly spattering during the overflight, but the lava inlet near the base of the cone is evidence of continued effusion into the lava lake. USGS photo taken by M. Zoeller.

On Friday, February 12, HVO scientists hiked along the rim of Halema‘uma‘u to capture photos of the lava lake
February 12, 2021

View of Halema‘uma‘u lava lake from the northwest, February 12, 2021

On Friday, February 12, HVO scientists hiked along the rim of Halema‘uma‘u to capture photos of the lava lake from different vantage points. In this photo from the northwest rim, the active western fissure is tucked into the lower-right corner of the crater. The actively circulating western portion of the lava lake (lower-right) and the stagnant eastern portion (upper-left

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