Hawaii volcano: Whirlwind over fissure sends lava flying

Molten rock is said to have been thrown by erratic winds

Jake Josling
Tuesday 03 July 2018 22:02
Hawaii volcano: Whirlwind over fissure sends lava flying

A new video has emerged showing a whirlwind of lava in Hawaii following the recent eruption of the Kilauea volcano.

In the video that was uploaded by the United States Geological Survey (USGS), the lava can be seen being thrown about by the winds. The molten rock is said to have been thrown metres by the erratic winds.

USGS scientists explained that the phenomenon is caused when "hot gases rise and punch through the cooler air above, to create a vertical column of hot air."

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Brave Hawaiian Volcano Observatory field crews filmed the video using a telephoto lens while they maintained a safe distance. The field crews were in the area monitoring Fissure 8, one of the 24 fissures opened during the recent eruption.

The whirlwind was said to have lasted 10 minutes, over this time it was starting and stopping without warning.

Kilauea is Hawaii’s most active volcano. Its recent eruption is said to have caused 4,000 earthquakes all over the island.

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