Yellowstone Volcano Observatory

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Date published: October 8, 2018

Yellowstone's rivers—the key to monitoring hydrothermal activity

We often talk about monitoring Yellowstone. To most people, this implies tracking earthquake activity over time, or how the ground moves up and down, or how temperatures change due to thermal activity. But did you know that the river systems are also monitored? It turns out that tracking changes in river chemistry is a good way to identify overall changes in Yellowstone's hydrothermal system...

Date published: October 1, 2018

Hydrothermal explosions in Yellowstone National Park

One of the most common questions asked of YVO is "when is the next big one?" This is an interesting question, given the multiple potential natural hazards that exist at Yellowstone. Big earthquake? Big lava flow? Big explosion?

Date published: September 24, 2018

Changes are afoot in Yellowstone's Upper Geyser Basin!

In about 500 BCE, Heraclitus of Ephesus declared "life is flux." Today, we know the saying better as, "the only constant is change." This is true of life -- and also of hydrothermal systems.

Date published: September 17, 2018

One of scientists' best tools for tracking ground deformation was designed to do something else

More often than not, unforeseen outcomes are bad news. Requiring a complex password is intended to make your password more secure. And it is – unless you write it down because you can't remember it.

Date published: September 10, 2018

Studying Yellowstone's thermal areas from the air

In a previous Yellowstone Caldera Chronicles article, we discussed using satellite thermal infrared remote sensing to study the thousands of thermal features that are spread out across Yellowstone National Park. 

Date published: September 3, 2018

Yellowstone hydrology—more than just hot water!

Many of Yellowstone National Park's most recognized and iconic water features are hot springs and geysers.

Date published: August 27, 2018

Taking advantage of learning opportunities at Yellowstone

Over the past 8 months, Yellowstone Caldera Chronicles articles have explored many topics about Yellowstone, from the history of the Park to recent earthquake and geyser activity. How can teachers pull this science into the classroom?

Date published: August 20, 2018

The Norris temperature network—a unique system for monitoring Yellowstone's thermal features

Norris Geyser Basin is one of the most dynamic geyser basins in Yellowstone National Park. It frequently experiences "disturbances" when thermal activity waxes and wanes and water chemistry changes over the course of a season. Earthquake swarms are common nearby, and the surface moves up and down with some regularity.

Date published: August 13, 2018

Are Yellowstone's gases dangerous?

Are gas emissions at Yellowstone dangerous? You may ask this question while walking along the boardwalks of Yellowstone's geyser basins, where you'll see billowing white gas plumes or wrinkle your nose at a stinky "rotten egg" smell. In fact, it's a question that has been considered by scientists and visitors to the area for over a century.

Date published: August 6, 2018

The USGS network of volcano observatories -- how does YVO fit?

Fans of Yellowstone Caldera Chronicles are likely well aware of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (YVO) and its existence as a consortium of different state, federal and university partners (more details are available in a previous YCC article). You might not be so familiar, though, with how YVO fits in...

Date published: August 5, 2018

60 years since the 1959 M7.3 Hebgen Lake earthquake: its history and effects on the Yellowstone region

Yellowstone Caldera Chronicles is a weekly column written by scientists and collaborators of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory. This week's contribution is...

Date published: July 30, 2018

Brimstone Basin - a Cool Place at Yellowstone!

The thought of hydrothermal activity at Yellowstone conjures images of hot pools and spouting geysers, but water doesn't always have to appear at the surface in hydrothermal areas.