NASA-led campaign studies Hawaii’s iconic volcanoes
08 February 2017
Kilauea Volcano on the island of Hawaii is one of Earth's most active volcanoes, drawing scientists and tourists alike from all over the world to study and witness its spectacular displays of nature. This month, a NASA-led science team is exploring Kilauea and the adjacent volcano Mauna Loa from the air, ground and space. Their goal: to better understand volcanic processes and hazards.
In late January, scientists from NASA, the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO), Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, and several universities embarked on a six-week field campaign to study the links between volcanic gases/thermal emissions and vegetation health and extent; the flow of lava from the volcanoes; thermal anomalies; gas plumes; other active volcanic processes; and ways to mitigate volcanic hazards. The campaign, which is also studying Hawaii's coral reefs, will provide precursor data for NASA's Hyperspectral Infrared Imager (HyspIRI) satellite mission concept to study Earth ecosystems and natural hazards such as volcanoes, wildfires and drought.
Image credit: NASA - Night view of Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano, one of Earth's most active volcanoes.