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WATCH: Lava Flow From Hawaii's Mount Kilauea, The Volcano That Has Been Erupting For More Than 30 Years

Jun 08, 2016 09:11 AM EDT
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We might want to give this volcano a medal for being so hardworking. Hawaii's Kilauea volcano is one of the world's most active, with one of its volcanic cones erupting for more than 30 years.

Lava pours from the ground by the gallon, as per Washington Post, cooling down in its blackness and creating a new piece of Earth.

In this video courtesy of WaPo, the Puu Oo, a volcanic cone in its eastern rift zone, seemed to burst endlessly. Instead of one big eruption, Hawaii's most active volcano has been on a "slow simmer for decades," the report said . Kilauea is slowly gurgling magma and spewing it out through thin cracks in the earth called dikes--a process called fissure eruption.

ABC13 reported that it has been actively erupting since Jan. 3, 1983. Its lava has claimed over 200 nearby buildings and covered almost nine miles of highway along the southeast coast.

Fortunately, this new activity did not threaten any structures, said the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory.


(Photo : kimheimbuch0/Pixabay)

Kilauea: Youngest and most active

Located in the southern part of Hawaii known as Big Island, the Kilauea volcano is the youngest and most active shield volcano on the island, as per Volcano Discovery. It is near-constantly erupting on its summit (caldera) or on its rift zones.

The eruption in the Puu Oo vent is one of the most long-lived eruptions in the world, spewing lava for more than 30 years. It has covered more than 100 square kilometers and has also added new coastline to the island.

The Kilauea volcano has a large summit caldera with a central crater called Halemaumau. According to Hawaiian legends, it is the home of fire goddess Pele.

About 90 percent of the volcanic surface is formed from its lava flows and are less than 1,100 years old. Seventy percent of its surface is younger than 600 years.

Kilauea taking over

Even its name is indicative of its taking over the island's surface. "Kilauea" actually means "much spreading," referring to its lava flows that have taken over the island.

Its earliest eruption has been recorded around the year 1750, as per Basic Planet.

In its 1986 eruption, the lava took over the Visitor Center in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. March 1990 recorded the beginning of its most destructive eruption period in modern history. Over the summer, more than a hundred homes, a store and church were buried beneath 50 to 80 feet of lava, Live Science reported.

In 2012, the Royal Garden subdivision was completely abandoned after the lava claimed the homes. Jack Thompson, 61, refused to leave his house even if access to roads were closed back in 2008, forcing him to hike several miles. On March 3 that year, Thompson and his friend were evacuated by helicopter as lava consumed his home.


(Photo : Frank Wittig/Flickr via Wikimedia Commons)

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