Volcanology: The 2018 rift eruption and summit collapse of Kilauea Volcano

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© 2019 American Association for the Advancement of Science.All right reserved. In 2018, Kilauea Volcano experienced its largest lower East Rift Zone (LERZ) eruption and caldera collapse in at least 200 years. After collapse of the Pu'u 'O'o vent on 30 April, magma propagated downrift. Eruptive fissures opened in the LERZ on 3 May, eventually extending ∼6.8 kilometers. A 4 May earthquake [moment magnitude (Mw) 6.9] produced ∼5 meters of fault slip. Lava erupted at rates exceeding 100 cubic meters per second, eventually covering 35.5 square kilometers. The summit magma system partially drained, producing minor explosions and near-daily collapses releasing energy equivalent to Mw 4.7 to 5.4 earthquakes. Activity declined rapidly on 4 August. Summit collapse and lava flow volume estimates are roughly equivalent-about 0.8 cubic kilometers. Careful historical observation and monitoring of Kilauea enabled successful forecasting of hazardous events.

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