• Halema`uma`u Just Before Dawn

    Hawai'i Volcanoes

    National Park Hawai'i

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After Dark in the Park Video Archives - March 16 2010

March 16, 2010 - "Kilauea's Summit Eruption: What's Up and What's Next?"

On March 19, 2008, an explosion within Halema`ma`u Crater heralded the start of a new eruption, the first at Kilauea's summit since 1982. Surprisingly, this eruption was not preceded by traditional indicators, such as earthquakes and ground swelling. Also unusual, Kilauea's new summit eruption occurred without interrupting activity on the volcano's east rift zone, which has been erupting nearly nonstop since 1983. Although lava is frequently visible deep within the summit vent, it has not erupted significant amounts of ash or spatter. Instead, it has emitted great quantities of volcanic gas, creating a major impact on Hawai`i Island's air quality. On the second anniversary of this unique eruption, Hawaiian Volcano Observatory volcanologist Mike Poland explores its possible causes, and discusses how Kilauea's summit eruption might evolve in the months and years to come.

Length 01:00:38
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Did You Know?

'Ama`u fern frond unfurling.

The young fronds of the `ama`u fern (Sadleria cyatheoides) often emerge red to block harmful rays from the sun. They gradually turn green with age.