Volcanic Activity at Kilauea
false-color
acquired May 21, 2009 download large false-color image (1 MB, JPEG, 1500x1000)
acquired May 21, 2009 download large natural-color image (3 MB, JPEG, 4500x3000)

Several days after the crew of the Space Shuttle Atlantis photographed volcanic activity from Hawaii’s Kilauea Volcano, the Advanced Land Imager (ALI) on NASA’s Earth Observing-1 satellite captured this image, on May 21, 2009.

ALI used a combination of shortwave infrared, infrared, and red light to make this image. Vegetation appears fluorescent green. Lava appears deep brown. High-temperature areas appear red, such as the pinpoints of light along the active lava flow and the coast. Clouds appear white with a hint of blue, and volcanic plumes appear sky blue. Through the patchwork of clouds floating overhead, evidence of the volcano’s activity appears in the form of a plume from Pu‘u ‘O‘o Crater. Both old and new lava flows have formed rocky rivulets reaching all the way to the coast, and where fresh lava enters the water, plumes rise.

The same day that ALI acquired this image, the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reported that magma was releasing gas through Pu‘u ‘O‘o Crater then erupting from vents to the east. The observatory maintained a volcano watch for Kilauea and reported elevated sulfur dioxide levels in the area.

Kilauea is a shield volcano with a low, broad shape resembling an ancient warrior shield. The volcano is one of Hawaii’s most active. Written records of volcanic activity extend back to the 1820s, and accounts of eruptions from Kilauea occur in Polynesian legends. Kilauea overlaps its neighbor, Mauna Loa, another shield volcano to the west.

  1. References

  2. Global Volcanism Program. Kilauea. Smithsonian Institution. Accessed May 22, 2009.
  3. Hawaii Volcano Observatory. (2009, May 21). Recent Kilauea Status Reports, Updates, and Information Releases. U.S. Geological Survey. Accessed May 22, 2009.

NASA image created by Jesse Allen, using EO-1 ALI data provided courtesy of the NASA EO-1 Team. Caption by Michon Scott

Instrument(s): 
EO-1 - ALI

Volcanic Activity at Kilauea

Share
Image Location
Image Location
More in this Event (view all)
Left
Volcanic Haze over Hawai'i Hawaiian Vog Photographed from Space Shuttle Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Plume from Kilauea's Halema'uma'u Crater Lava Flows on Kilauea Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Kilauea Lava Enters the Ocean Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Volcanic Activity at Kilauea Business as Usual at Kilauea Volcano Fresh Lava Flows at Pu’u O’o Fresh Lava Flows Surround Pu'u 'O'o 100 Years at Kilauea Lava Flows on the Kilauea’s Pali Fresh Lava on Kilauea, Hawaii 30th Anniversary of the Pu’u ’O’o Eruption on Kilauea Activity at Kilauea’s Summit Last House Standing at Royal Gardens Lava Flows on Kilauea Halema’uma’u Crater Kilauea Lava Flows Encroach on Ohia Lehua Forest Kilauea Lava Chews Through More Forest
Right