Unified Interior Regions


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.

States L2 Landing Page Tabs

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April 19, 2003

Lava moving rapidly at front of breakout

Lava moving rapidly at front of breakout 880 m north of coconut grove. Width of view, about 1.5 m.

April 11, 2003

Lava moving along east edge of breakout near ahu

Lava moving along east edge of breakout near ahu. Width of view, about 1 m.

April 11, 2003

Lava at front of breakout

Lava at front of breakout moves into and burns dead shrubbery. Width of view, about 2 m.

March 28, 2003

Lava moves rapidly from under crust

Lava moves rapidly from under crust of inflating flow and finally disappears under overhang. Length of flowing toe, about 1 m.

March 15, 2003

Lava moves across rope

Broad toe of lava moves across rope that formed barrier for access to Wilipe`a lava delta.

March 15, 2003

Lava breaks out of inflated toe

Lava breaks out of inflated toe and moves down moderate slope with rolling motion, top faster than bottom. See still images for this day; sagging rope gives scale.

March 15, 2003

Continued movement of lava across rope barrier

Continued movement of lava across rope barrier. Muffled sounds of a long-lasting, migrating methane explosion can be heard about two-thirds of the way through the clip, followed by a "Wow."

March 6, 2003

Lava moving rapidly

Toe of lava moving fairly rapidly down moderate slope along edge of Kohola flow. Note that lava moves more rapidly at top than at base of toe, in contrast to lava in video for March 1, which was moving across nearly flat ground. Note also developing wrinkles in moving crust.

March 6, 2003

Lava burning bush

Lava moving down rather steep slope and burning bush at snout of stream. Width of burning bush, about 1 m.

March 1, 2003

Lava flow advancing

Details of flow advance shown in 25-second clip. Lava oozes outward from base of flow, picks up loose flakes of crust (1-3 cm across) on ground surface, and lifts them up as flow thickens. This is how material once on ground surface gets onto top of flow. This is a common mode of advance of lava on nearly flat slope. Note: This is a large file because of its

February 18, 2003

Cascade and lava falls on west edge of Kohola ocean entry

Cascade and lava falls on west edge of Kohola ocean entry, falling over sea cliff about 8 m high. Turn down your sound; lots of wind noise.

February 18, 2003

Broad cascade and falls

Part of broad cascade and falls that suddenly gushed from under crust at top of sea cliff. Turn down your sound; lots of wind noise.

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View of Pu`ukapukapu looking eastward along the coast.
May 2, 2002

Pu`ukapukapu sits atop the most imposing cliff along the south coast of Kilauea, towering over the back-country camp site of Halape and dropping 320 m (1,050 feet) precipitously into the sea. Pu`ukapukapu is an impediment to coastal foot travel, an imposing view point, and a mystery.

View across the crater of Pu`u `O`o showing the lava pond
April 25, 2002

Lava has been a frequent visitor at Pu`u `O`o cone these past few weeks. It has flooded the crater floor and erupted from vents around the cone. Previous pond activity was in the autumn of 1999 and, before that, in 1997. What's changed?

April 18, 2002

One evening a couple of weeks ago, the summit of Kilauea began to deform at an impressive rate. Although the ground tilt and associated tremor caused by magma moving beneath the caldera was not humanly perceptible, sensitive instruments let us know that something unusual was up.

April 11, 2002

April is "Tsunami Awareness Month" in Hawai`i. Tsunami is the deadliest natural hazard in Hawai`i. The month of April is chosen to remind people of this hazard because on April 1, 1946, a tsunami, generated in the Aleutians by a magnitude-7.8 earthquake, swept through the islands and killed 159 residents.

volcanic explosion, Kilauea
April 4, 2002

Kīlauea has had many explosive eruptions in the past. Fortunately, we have no evidence that the volcano is building to another one. But it is prudent to examine the past to know what to expect in the future.

photo of lava
March 29, 2002

Spatter structures, and crustal overturning in Episode 55 crater

March 28, 2002

How big is an eruption? This is a short question with a long answer. Volcanologists, like other people, judge the size of something by comparing it to something else. Volcanic eruptions span such a large range in size, style, and duration that comparisons can be hard, especially between volcanoes with different eruptive styles.

photo of lava
March 28, 2002

Pu`u `O`o spatter cones, spitting hornito, and rootless shield

March 21, 2002

From time to time, we get calls from people who are writing about Kilauea, hoping to confirm the idea that Kilauea is the most active volcano on Earth. We have to tell them that, no, it's only one of the most active volcanoes.

photo of lava
March 15, 2002

Rootless shield and pond at 2180 feet

March 14, 2002

A heightened awareness of earthquakes usually follows large and destructive ones, like those occurring in Turkey and El Salvador in 1999 and 2001, respectively. Combined, these earthquakes killed more than 37,000 people.