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January 6, 2022

The second in a series of recorded talks by HVO staff that will be posted on our website throughout the month of January. These talks are presented as part of the Island of Hawai‘i’s annual Volcano Awareness Month, an effort to increase understanding of Hawaiian volcanoes among residents and visitors. Questions? Email

Volcano Awareness Month 2022 Olivine Feature

Also available here:

Please also see the recent "Volcano Watch" article on Volcano Awareness Month 2022. 

The olivine time capsule

Video Transcript
Olivine—the green mineral found in Hawaiian lavas—and its chemistry can tell us a lot about how, when, and where magmas move inside volcanoes before they erupt. Join Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geologist Kendra J. Lynn as she explains what elements make up this special mineral, how we measure it, and how we “read” the olivine crystals to learn about magma histories. We’ll explore how olivine crystals from the Keanakāko‘i Tephra have helped us better understand Kīlauea’s explosive eruptive past. Volcano Awareness Month is spearheaded by the USGS–Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, in cooperation with Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency, and the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo, and provides informative and engaging public programs about the science and hazards of Hawaiian volcanoes. Photo caption: (L) Green olivine crystals in lava from Mauna Loa’s 1868 eruption. (R) Microscope image of a single olivine crystal extracted from tephra at Kīlauea. This crystal is about 1 mm (less than 1/16 of an inch) tall (USGS photos).

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