Friday, May 11, 2012

The lava lake in the Halemaumau crater

From: Greg H.
Sent: May 11, 2012
To: undisclosed recipients
Subject: Fw: The lava lake in the Halemaumau crater

Halemaumau Crater
Hey there, I worked at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory for many years and just saw today that the volcano in pretty active these days. Anyway thought I would send this email to share with you and others. Regards, Greg.

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory released new video this week showing splattering in the lava lake in Halemaumau Crater.

The lava is thrown 15 to 30 feet in the air before sinking back into the lake in the video taken Wednesday. Scientists say views of the lake are fleeting as the gas plume shifts with the wind.

The lava lake rises and falls as the volcano goes through inflation and deflation cycles. Earlier this week, lava splattering reached the inner ledge of the vent in Halemaumau Crater.  Glow from the lava lake can be seen against the gas plume at night.

Earlier this month, Pele's hair, strands of green/gold lava that resemble hair, covered the ground downwind of the vent. Pele's hair is formed when lava is thrown in the air and explodes or is spun into strands by windy conditions.

The observatory also released a new photo of a lava flow that appears to be headed to the ocean. An older flow that spread over the coastal plain has mostly stalled. But a new flow continues to slowly advance from the Pali. It was less than a mile from the ocean on Thursday.

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