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Hawaiian Volcano Update: Kīlauea Recharging Underground

3:02 AM · Mar 31, 2023

Now three weeks removed from the last surface activity on Kīlauea, monitoring signals on the volcano's summit continue to suggest an underground recharge of magma pressure. GPS and ground-tilt still show longer-period inflation, though overlain by shorter-term Deflation-Inflation cycles typical of background activity. Notably, earthquake rates within and surrounding the summit remain moderately elevated relative to their pace last month, consistent with the USGS updates that a resumption or new summit eruption could happen quickly. For now, there are no imminent indications of any change. There continues to be no sign of magma movement in the rift zones, and no cause for additional concern in local communities. Gas output also remains near background levels, but vog still registers occasionally in surrounding communities, remaining the primary volcanic hazard during this eruptive intermission. Maunaloa's quiet but inflationary post-eruption pattern also endures, but still lacks significant earthquakes that would precede its next activity. Last week's seismic flurry south of Maunaloa's recent eruption site on its Northeast Rift has been confirmed to be a tectonic adjustment of its southeast flank along the Kaʻōiki fault zone. This week we briefly reflect on the last 5 years on Kīlauea summit and the dramatic year-to-year changes we all have witnessed. As usual, our live presentation reviews the recent changes using webcam timelapses, monitoring data and reports courtesy of the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, annotated on-screen, and we discuss live viewer questions.

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