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Vulcanology: Interaction between Kilauea and Mauna Loa

Miklius, Asta; Cervelli, Peter

After almost a decade of very slow rates of deformation, Mauna Loa in Hawaii, the largest volcano on Earth, began inflating in May 2002; at the same time, a high-volume effusive episode began at its neighbour Kilauea. We have found a correlation between these events at a very short timescale, detected by continuous deformation monitoring. This remarkable observation suggests that there is a crustal-level interaction between the magma systems of Mauna Loa and Kilauea, reviving a century-old controversy over the relationship between these two volcanoes on the basis of differences in their lava chemistry and in their patterns of eruptive behaviour1,2,3,4,5.

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