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2020 Projects

Post Eruption Long Range Displacement Ground Deformation Monitoring of Large Rock Fractures at Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park

Nerissa Barling ’21
Major: Geology

Nerissa Barling ’21

Major: Geology

Research Collaborators: Eric Bilderback, John R. Wood, Henry Crawford

Faculty Collaborator: Christine Siddoway, Geology

The East Rift Zone of Kīlauea Volcano experienced its largest eruption in nearly 200 years in 2018. Within Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park (HAVO), the eruption caused large-scale caldera collapse and has created ground instability in the summit area of Kīlauea Volcano. Areas impacted along Crater Rim Drive include the Jaggar Museum and Hawaiian Volcano Observatory facilities, along with associated roads and parking lots. Significant park facilities near these faults along the northeast rim of the crater remain closed. The crater collapse occurred from May to early August of 2018 in 62 collapse events with thousands of shallow magnitude 2.5 or greater earthquakes also recorded in the summit area of Kīlauea Volcano. To address concerns about ongoing ground deformation, long-range vibrating wire displacement meters were installed across caldera fault fracture zones in proximity to roads, trails, and buildings with associated damage from the 2018 crater collapse. This project primarily seeks to monitor long-term ground deformation with short-term goals to address wind noise and thermal elastic expansion of instrumentation and rock. We aim to provide the National Park with quality data that will inform decisions regarding policies following felt earthquakes, facilities operations, and reopening the area and facilities for future public visitation.

To Learn More About Nerissa’s Research Please Visit Her Zoom Session

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