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Hawaiian Volcano Update: Glow Dwindles, Maunaloa Quiet While Kīlauea Quakes

3:03 AM · Dec 30, 2022

Over the past two weeks, glow from the recent eruptions of both Maunaloa and Kīlauea have dwindled but are still present. On Maunaloa, the recent flow front continues to sparkle and settle on webcams, with underground signals still following the typical post-eruption sequence. On Kīlauea, overturning of the summit lava lake ceased on December 20th, about two weeks after the crusting over process began, but persistent glow has re-emerged on the other (eastern) side of the central island. Deeper underground, Kīlauea continues to inflate and exhibit slightly elevated levels of earthquakes, suggesting magma is still entering the system and adjusting to the extra subsurface “elbow room”, which expanded in sync with Maunaloa's eruption and associated deflation. In short, Kīlauea appears situated to recover more quickly and erupt again once those adjustments are complete, while Maunaloa appears likely to take longer to recover and erupt again, following its historical pattern. A reported Maunaloa 2022 eruption volume of 230 million cubic meters (MCM) or 66 billion cubic gallons, including trapped bubbles, just slightly exceeds the 1984 volume of 220 MCM and places the 2022 eruption as the 6th largest in the historical record back to 1832. It is the largest erupted volume since 1950, the second largest since 1877, and the largest recorded on the Northeast Rift Zone since 1855-56. In comparison to Kīlauea which has erupted 152 MCM in the past 2 years, Maunaloa produced 50% more lava in only 2 weeks. On a daily basis, this equates to about an 80 times greater output from Maunaloa over a much shorter period. As usual, we review the changes through imagery, reports and monitoring data courtesy of the USGS-HVO, discuss live viewer questions, and annotate the presentation on-screen as we go. VIDEO:

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