Hawaiian Volcano Observatory

Volcano Watch

Volcano Watch is a weekly article and activity update written by U.S. Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists and colleagues.

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Date published: August 6, 2020

Volcano Watch—How hot is Kīlauea's summit water lake?

The recent first anniversary of the appearance of water at Kīlauea's summit is a reminder of how much has changed since the end of the 2018 eruption and summit collapse.

Date published: July 30, 2020

Volcano Watch—Kīlauea Volcano's summit water lake is one-year old

On July 25, 2019, ponded water was first observed within Halema‘uma‘u at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano. Over the past twelve months, the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) has watched this amazing body of water grow from a nascent pond into a veritable lake, the first observed within Kīlauea...

Date published: July 23, 2020

Volcano Watch—HVO looking to install seismographs in your community

The Youth and Education in Science (YES) program at USGS in collaboration with the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) is launching a community outreach and educational project called Bridging Local Outreach & Seismic Signal Monitoring (BLOSSM) in Hawaii. BLOSSM aims at engaging local students and communities through seismology.

Date published: July 2, 2020

Volcano Watch—Tech talk part 2: Schematic diagram of one HVO technician's position

Last week's "Volcano Watch" article introduced the role of "technician" at the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO). This week, we present the introspective of Steven Fuke's life (schematic diagram) as an "electronics technician" at HVO through his experiences,...

Date published: June 25, 2020

Volcano Watch—Tech talk part 1: Electronic "doctor" tracks health of monitoring stations

As part of Volcano Awareness Month earlier this year, "Volcano Watch" featured five articles focused on different roles at the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO). These articles described the roles of "geodesist," "...

Date published: June 18, 2020

Volcano Watch—Extraordinary tenure ends for leader of USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory

The extraordinary leadership of Tina Neal as Scientist-in-Charge (SIC) of the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) comes to an end this week, when she returns to the Alaska Volcano Observatory after fulfilling her five-year commitment to HVO. David Phillips, HVO’s Deputy SIC, will take the helm until Tina’s successor arrives. 

Date published: June 11, 2020

Volcano Watch—Kīlauea’s 1952 summit eruption ended a long period of inactivity

On June 27, 1952, an eruption started at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano, ending a period of quiescence that had lasted nearly 18 years.

Date published: June 4, 2020

Volcano Watch—The 1919–1920 Mauna Iki eruption at Kīlauea Volcano

As many people have noted, the last global pandemic was raging one hundred years ago.  Kīlauea was erupting 100 years ago, although it was certainly not quite as significant of an event on the world stage. This eruption a century ago produced the Mauna Iki (“little mountain”) lava shield on Kīlauea’s Southwest Rift Zone.

Date published: May 28, 2020

Volcano Watch — New assessment of Kīlauea’s extreme SO2 emission rates in 2018

If you were around the Island of Hawai‘i—or even other Hawaiian Islands, or Guam!—between May and August of 2018, you likely know that Kīlauea’s lower East Rift Zone (LERZ) eruption released a lot of sulfur dioxide (SO2). But how much is a lot?

Date published: May 21, 2020

Volcano Watch — Several notable Kīlauea anniversaries occur at the end of May

The past two years of "Volcano Watch" articles from late May focused on commemorating the 49th and 50th anniversaries of the Mauna Ulu eruption. However, the end of May has several other notable Kīlauea eruption beginnings, changes, and endings. Here we reflect on some selected anniversaries spanning 1823–2018.

Date published: May 14, 2020

Volcano Watch — Coming home: HVO welcomes Deputy Scientist-in-Charge David Phillips

It takes a village to run a volcano observatory. The position of Deputy Scientist-in-Charge (DSIC), once called Operations Manager but always known as the right hand to the Scientist-in-Charge, has long been key to the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory's success, especially as technology has advanced and staff size increased.

Date published: May 7, 2020

Volcano Watch — HVO assists CSAV with International Training

The mission of the U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) is "to monitor, investigate, and assess hazards from active volcanoes and earthquakes in Hawaii, and communicate results of this work to the public, emergency managers, and scientific community."