Yellowstone Volcano Observatory

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Date published: November 29, 2021

Why Have There Been So Many Earthquakes in Central Idaho?

Seismic activity in central Idaho has been elevated for the past 20 months. These earthquakes are aftershocks of a M6.5 earthquake that occurred on March 31, 2020—a classic example of a mainshock-aftershock sequence!

Date published: November 22, 2021

The largest landslide in the world

Yellowstone is well-known as one of the largest volcanic systems in the world. Few people know, however, that the largest-known subaerial landslide on Earth is located just next door.

Date published: November 15, 2021

The Changing Moods of Colloidal Pool in Norris Geyser Basin

Many of Yellowstone’s hot springs, geysers, mud pots, and fumaroles look different depending on the season, year, or sometimes even the day one visits. Colloidal Pool, in Norris Geyser Basin, is an interesting example of a feature that changed over the course of summer 2021.

Date published: November 8, 2021

Exciting insights into Yellowstone’s youngest supereruption

About 631,000 years ago, a massive eruption formed what today is known as Yellowstone Caldera. New deposits, discovered within the caldera, are changing our perspective on how that event might have unfolded.

Date published: November 1, 2021

How do GPS stations monitoring Yellowstone measure such small movements?

In Yellowstone, deformation of the ground surface can be measured to fractions of an inch.  Specialized methods of processing GPS data make it possible to achieve this amazing resolution.

Date published: October 25, 2021

How much heat is emitted by hydrothermal areas on the floor of Yellowstone Lake?

Measuring the heat output of a hydrothermal area is not easy—Earth’s surface is often too noisy for accurate measurements to be made easily.  But the floor of Yellowstone Lake is a thermally quiet environment and provides a unique opportunity to assess heat flow in one of Yellowstone’s most dynamic hydrothermal areas.

Date published: October 18, 2021

Temperature Loggers Shed Light on Past and Future Yellowstone Geyser Activity

Selected hydrothermal features at Yellowstone National Park have data loggers that capture geyser eruption times. A systematic analysis of these data can reveal variations in geyser activity over time and between different geyser basins.

Date published: October 11, 2021

Henrys Fork Caldera: A glimpse into one possible future for Yellowstone

What will happen to Yellowstone once its rhyolite magma system shuts down? To understand the future, geologists look to the past—in this case, to Yellowstone Caldera’s older but smaller sibling, Henrys Fork Caldera!

Date published: October 4, 2021

A step-by-step guide for accessing satellite images of Yellowstone

Have you ever wanted to get your own visible and thermal infrared satellite images of Yellowstone?  They are relatively easy to find and download, all for free!

Date published: September 27, 2021

How and why do we collect sediment cores in Yellowstone Lake?

In August 2021, YVO scientists collected sediment cores from the floor of Yellowstone Lake. Analysis of the sediment composition, as well as the fluids contained within the sediment, can provide new information about hydrothermal activity occurring out of view beneath the lake water.

Date published: September 20, 2021

Taking Yellowstone seismology to the classroom for some “deep learning”

Locating earthquakes in Yellowstone is a time-intensive process that requires the trained eye and extensive experience of a human analyst. But advances in computer algorithms, known as “machine learning” tools, hold promise for automatically locating earthquakes that might otherwise be overlooked, and the dawn of a new age in seismology!