Kilauea Volcano on Hawaii Big Island

The Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii’s Big Island recently erupted after an Earthquake that struck the region. The epicentre of the earthquake was located beneath the Kilauea Volcano.

About Kilauea Volcano

  • The Kilauea volcano was last active in 2018 due to an earthquake.
  • Mt Kilauea is the second youngest volcano of the Hawaiian hotspot.
  • It is the most active of the five volcanoes that form the Island of Hawaii.
  • Structurally, Mt Kilauea has a recently formed Caldera. Caldera is a hollow structure formed after a volcano erupts large volumes of magma in short period of time. The ground surface then collapses downward into the emptied magma chamber. The collapse leaves a massive depression at the surface. This is called Caldera.
  • It has two active rift zones. Rift zones are features of shield volcanos that has a set of linear cracks that develop into volcanic edifice (Edifice is a large structure). The rift zones are caused by the gravitational stresses generated by magma emplacement.
  • Between 1983 and 2018, Kilauea has erupted continuously. During the 2018 eruption, around two dozen lava vents erupted simultaneously from the summit. It threw ashes to 30,000 feet into the air.
  • The pit crater formed in the volcano is called Halemaumau. The crater contained a lava lake. The subsidence of the lava lake was accompanied by periodic explosions. Eventually water began to fill in the lake after the volcano began to erupt in multiple other locations.
  • Kilauea is a Shield Volcano. Shield volcano is a type of volcano that is composed of fluid lava. It resembles a warrior shield and thus the name Shield volcano. The lava flow of Shield Volcano is greater than the Strato Volcano.

What is Hawaii Hotspot?

It is a volcanic hotspot that is located near the Hawaii Islands. The Hotspots are volcanic regions that are fed by the underlying mantle that is hotter than the surrounding mantle.

The position of a hotspot is independent of tectonic plate boundaries. The tectonic plates usually move above the hotspots. Volcanoes are created as the tectonic plates move above the hotspots.

Five Major volcanoes of Hawaii Island

The Island of Hawaii is made of five separate volcanoes such as Kohala (Extinct), Mauana Kea (Dormant), Hualalai (dormant), Mauna Loa (active) and Kilauea (active). The Island of Hawaii is currently growing due to volcanoes Mauna Loa and Kilauea.




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  • Vanessia

    Is it a shield cone?