A small cone has developed on the floor of the crater within fissure 8 on the lower East Rift Zone, according to the U.S. Geological Survey, which documented it Tuesday during a drone surveillance flight.
The cone formed as lava erupted from an opening on the surface of the flow that covers the crater floor, according to USGS, which upon closer observation Tuesday morning found bits of molten lava had built it up to about 10 to 13 feet high.
Meanwhile, USGS said in Thursday morning’s update that only a small amount of incandescence was visible from the fissure 8 cone for a brief period overnight.
While small lava flows have been observed within the fissure 8 cone, USGS said none extend outside its walls and that little change in overall activity has been detected the past few days.
Seismicity and ground deformation remain low at the Kilauea summit, while earthquake activity — aftershocks of the 6.9-magnitude earthquake in early May — continues on Kilauea’s South Flank.
USGS said tiltmeters in Kilauea’s middle East Rift Zone have recorded small amounts of inflationary tilt, a possible sign of refilling of the rift zone. Current rates, however, are much smaller than they were during major eruptive activity and are not changing rapidly.
Sulfur dioxide emission rates at the summit, Puu Oo and LERZ combined remain lower than at any time since late 2007.