Unified Interior Regions

Hawaii

The Pacific Region has nine USGS Science Centers in California, Nevada, and Hawaii. The Regional Office, headquartered in Sacramento, provides Center oversight and support, facilitates internal and external collaborations, and works to further USGS strategic science directions.

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Thermal map of fissure system and lava flows...
May 19, 2018

Thermal map shows the fissure system and lava flows. The two primary lava flows originate from the Fissure 20-22 area.

Kīlauea Lower East Rift Zone Fissures and Flows, May 19 at 10:00 a....
May 19, 2018

Locations of fissures and an ‘a‘ā flow

Side by side comparisons of caldera showing change.
May 18, 2018

Radar amplitude images show changes to the caldera area of Kīlauea Volcano

Kīlauea Lower East Rift Zone Fissures and Flows, May 18 at 1:00 p.m. HST
May 18, 2018

Location of the lava flow spreading

Thermal map of northeast end of fissure system...
May 18, 2018

Thermal map shows a close up of the northeastern end of the fissure system

Thermal map of northeast end of fissure system...
May 16, 2018

Thermal map shows a close up of the northeastern end of the fissure system

Kīlauea Lower East Rift Zone Fissures and Flows, May 16 at 7:00 a....
May 16, 2018

Location of the lava flow spreading from fissure 17

Kīlauea Lower East Rift Zone Fissures and Flows, May 15 at 7:00 a.m...
May 15, 2018

Location of the ‘a‘ā lava flow spreading from fissure 17

Thermal map of northeast end of fissure system...
May 15, 2018

Thermal map shows a close up of the northeastern end of the fissure system.

Thermal map of northeast end of fissure system...
May 14, 2018

Close up of the northeastern end of the fissure system.

Thermal map of the fissure system...
May 14, 2018

Thermal map shows the fissure system during an overflight of the area in Leilani Estates

Kīlauea Lower East Rift Zone Fissures and Flows, May 14 at 2:30 p.m...
May 14, 2018

Location of fissure 17. 

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October 22, 2020

Emerging tech as STEM platforms in problem-based learning (Kīlauea)

USGS–Hawaiian Volcano Observatory Geophysicist Jefferson Chang talks about technologies that track activity at Hawaiian volcanoes and how crowdsourcing and citizen science can contribute to a greater understanding of hazards, in this presentation to the 2020 SACNAS Advancing Hispanics/Chicanos & Native Americans in Science virtual conference held October 19-24, 2020 (

Color photograph of yellow native sulfur crystals
September 30, 2020

Close-up image of native sulfur crystals

A close-up image of native sulfur crystals that formed within fumaroles at the Sulphur Banks in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. In addition to sulfur species and other gases, volcanoes emit water vapor. Here, some of the vapor has condensed to liquid water and formed droplets visible on the sulfur crystals. USGS photo by P. Nadeau. 

Photograph of tubing inserted into a fumarole
September 30, 2020

Tubing inserted into a fumarole

Tubing inserted into a fumarole at the Sulphur Banks in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park allows HVO gas scientists to sample gas. The gas travels through the tube into gas sampling bottles for later analyses. USGS photo by M. Warren.

September 23, 2020

Video of the water lake at Kīlauea's summit

This video, taken on September 23, 2020, shows a small area of bubbling or upwelling along the western shoreline of the water lake at the summit of Kīlauea. This feature may result from a submerged fumarole (gas vent) on the crater wall. The extent of this feature is limited and it does not seem to have a significant effect on the overall lake surface activity. No other

Color photographs of volcanic crater lake
September 23, 2020

Kīlauea's summit water lake comparison - September 23, 2020

HVO geologists made observations of Kīlauea's summit water lake from the east rim of Halema‘uma‘u. This view point is on the large downdropped block that subsided during the 2018 collapse events. From this spot, a view of the entire lake is possible, providing a new perspective on the growth of the lake. The last visit to this spot was on December 18, 2019, when the lake

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Photograph of volcanic crater lake
September 23, 2020

Kīlauea's water lake from the east side - September 23, 2020

This view shows Kīlauea's water lake from the east side of the crater. On September 23, 2020, the western portion of the lake (top of image) was the most varied in color, with patches of greenish and brown water. The majority of the lake surface, however, was the typical tan hue. USGS photo by M. Patrick.

Photograph of material floating on volcanic crater lake
September 23, 2020

Floating material on Kīlauea's summit water lake on September 23, 2020

Small patches of light-colored floating material were seen drifting on the surface of Kīlauea's summit water lake on September 23, 2020. The composition of this material is unknown, but future water sampling missions may provide insight. USGS photo by M. Patrick.

Color photograph of road and crater lake
September 23, 2020

Kīlauea’s summit water lake and Crater Rim Drive - September 23, 2020

Portions of Crater Rim Drive, within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, appear cracked, offset, and down-dropped in this photo, taken during an overflight of Kīlauea’s summit on September 23, 2020. To the north, Kīlauea’s summit water lake, within Halema‘uma‘u, is visible. USGS photo by K. Mulliken.

Photograph of trail and sulfur banks
September 23, 2020

Sulphur Banks area and Ha‘akulamanu trail

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geologists flew over the Sulphur Banks area and Ha‘akulamanu trail within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park on September 23, 2020. Fumaroles in the Sulphur Banks area are sampled approximately every three months by Hawaiian Volcano Observatory gas geochemists to track long-term changes in volcanic gas chemistry at Kīlauea. USGS photo by K.

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Color photograph of steam vents
September 23, 2020

Wahinekapu (Steaming Bluff) and the Steam Vents area

The weather was overcast during an overflight of Kīlauea's summit on September 23, 2020. This view shows Wahinekapu (Steaming Bluff) and the Steam Vents area within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Extensive cracks in the area allow heated groundwater to escape from underground. Cracks reach up to 63 degrees Celsius (145 degrees Fahrenheit), preventing trees from growing.

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Photograph of scientists surveying caldera
September 23, 2020

Kīlauea summit gravity survey - September 23, 2020

On September 23, 2020, Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geophysicists and a geologist conducted a gravity survey of Kīlauea summit, as part of HVO's regular monitoring program. In this photo, scientists are carrying survey equipment westward along the remnants of the Halema‘uma‘u Trail on the down-dropped block of Kīlauea caldera. The fissure from the 1954 eruption can be seen

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Photograph of scientists surveying caldera
September 23, 2020

Kīlauea summit gravity survey - September 23, 2020

During a gravity survey, HVO scientists measure the relative strength of gravity (gravimeter, bottom left corner of photo) between benchmarks. High-precision vertical positions from kinematic Global Positioning System (GPS, tripod and antenna middle of photo) help correct the gravity measurement for the effects of elevation changes. The south sulfur banks, exposed during

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lava fountain
May 23, 2019

May 24, 2019, is a notable date in Kīlauea Volcano's history. It is the one-year anniversary of several key events in the 2018 Kīlauea eruption, most notably, the reactivation of fissure 8 with intermittent spattering while fissures 7 and 21 were producing two ‘a‘ā flows.

USGS
May 22, 2019

This GIS dataset shows the evolution of the "June 27th" lava flow (episode 61e of the Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō eruption) that was active from June 27, 2014, to June 8, 2016.

Students from the Teaching Through Technology (T3) Alliance
May 16, 2019

During the 2018 eruption of Kīlauea Volcano, when fissures erupted and lava flowed in the lower East Rift Zone (LERZ), many Puna residents were displaced from their homes. We, as a community, watched from the sidelines as the eruption went on, helpless in averting the course of nature.

Ash rises above Halema‘uma‘u within Kīlauea's summit caldera
May 9, 2019

A year ago, USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists and Island of Hawai‘i residents were in the throes of an historically unprecedented series of events for Kīlauea.

11:47 a.m. HST. Scientist measures the surface temperature of a cra...
May 8, 2019

The team at the U.S. Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory is one of several finalists nominated for the 2019 Service to America Medals.

A long skinny core section of mud with a sandy layer in the middle of it lays on the marsh grass near where the core was taken.
May 3, 2019

In a comprehensive survey of Hawaiian tsunami deposits, USGS scientists from the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center and collaborators found evidence for a widespread tsunami striking the islands between 1250 and 1450 CE.

field crews of Hawaiian Volcano Observatory
May 2, 2019

With the one-year anniversary of the onset of Kīlauea Volcano's 2018 lower East Rift Zone eruption upon us, USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) staff, like many Hawai‘i residents, are reflecting on this historic event. 

Preview image of timelapse sequence at Mauna Loa's summit
April 29, 2019

This timelapse sequence of webcam images over a 24-hour period shows a typical day at the summit of Mauna Loa. 

USGS
April 27, 2019

The U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) recorded a magnitude-4.2 earthquake on Saturday, April 27, 2019, at 5:26 p.m. HST.

fissures were characterized by low eruption rates
April 25, 2019

May 3, 2019, marks the one-year anniversary of the start of Kīlauea Volcano's 2018 lower East Rift Zone eruption. Over the past year, USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) geologists and collaborators have been closely studying the vast amount of data collected during the summer eruption. Now is a good time to explore what's been learned, and what's still unfolding.

progression of the magmatic intrusion from Kīlauea
April 18, 2019

When a major geologic event occurs, scientists who study such events and the people who are directly or indirectly impacted by it seek to understand its cause. Often, a first step toward that understanding is to rule out what did not cause the event.