HVO offers lava flow maps and GIS data

(BIVN) – Scientists and affiliates of the US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory:

Many messages to AskHVO ([email protected]) request resources related to geological maps and geographic information systems (GIS) data. “Is there a map of a certain lava flow?” “” Where can I find the associated GIS data? »All HVO and USGS publications are available at [this website], but this service is more efficient if you already know what to look for.

The HVO has its own list of publications available online. Another way to find this page is to click on “Publications” in the “Quick Links” section on the right side of the HVO home page. This list includes selected publications relating to Hawaiian volcanism. Recently it has been updated with geological maps and GIS products of interest to citizen-scientists.

These products are compiled at different scales and cover different regions of the state, so it can be difficult to quickly determine which one is best for your specific interest. To help you out, here we go over some of these maps and datasets, from the largest (statewide) to the smallest (sectors of a volcano). Use the list of publications on the HVO website to find links to each product.

The Geological Map of the State of Hawaii was prepared by Dave Sherrod et al (2007; scale 1: 100,000); this publication also includes GIS data. Most of their mapping for the island of Hawaii was taken from Edward Wolfe and Jean Morris’ important geological map of the island (1996; 1: 100,000) and Frank’s digital database. Trusdell et al. (2005; 1: 100,000). However, these maps are coarser than the smaller scale products discussed below. Only lava flows from the modern historical period – CE 1790 until the date of publication – have been identified individually, with older lavas being grouped into larger age groups.

For volcanoes on other islands, such as Haleakalā on Maui, the publication Sherrod et al. Remains the definitive source.
Several geological maps cover the island of Hawai’i and individual volcanoes. For Mauna Kea, Wolfe et al. (1997; scales vary by region) mapped from summit to coast of Kohala as part of a report on the geology of the volcano. A map of Hualālai was prepared by Richard Moore and David Clague (1991; 1:50,000), with a smaller scale inset of the summit region (1:24,000).

For Mauna Loa, there are very recent products for the northeast, central-southeast and southern flanks of Frank Trusdell and John Lockwood (2017, 2019 and 2020, respectively), which include both detailed geological maps (1:50,000) and data GIS (1:24,000). Two other geological map publications will cover the rest of the volcano. Additionally, maps and GIS data for areas of lava flooding on Mauna Loa have been published by Frank Trusdell and Michael Zoeller (2017; scales vary by region).

The geological cartographic products of Kīlauea are more fragmented, as there has been no recent map or series of maps dedicated to the entire volcano. Robin Holcomb’s geological mapping of the 1980s has been incorporated into the work of Wolfe and Morris (1996) and subsequent products; more detailed maps have only been published for parts of Kīlauea.

For the summit area there is a map by Christina Neal and John Lockwood (2003; 1:24,000) and a GIS database by Dillon Dutton et al (2007; 1:24,000). For the Rift Zone in the Middle East, Trusdell and Moore (2006; 1:24,000) published the Geological map of the Middle East Rift geothermal subzone; Zoeller et al. (2019; 1:24,000) produced the associated digital database. For the lower East Rift zone, including areas buried by lava in 2018, there is a map by Moore and Trusdell (1991; 1:24,000).

It is important to note that over 35 years of eruptive activity from 1983 to 2018 means that most of these maps of Kīlauea are in serious need of overhaul!

The HVO publication list also includes several stand-alone GIS datasets. James Kauahikaua et al. (2016) calculated the steepest descent lines for Kīlauea, Mauna Loa, Hualālai and Mauna Kea, which allows us to visualize plausible and topography-influenced lava flow paths. Tim Orr (2018) published GIS shapefiles for historic Kīlauea lava flows from 1790 to 1982. There are also GIS shapefiles describing the progression of two Pu’u ‘Ō’ō lava flows: l episode 61g of the casting from May 2016 to May 2017, by Orr and others (2017), and the stream from June 27 from June 2014 to June 2016, by Orr and Patrick (2019).

As the bibliography of HVO maps and other geospatial datasets grows, our online publication list will be updated accordingly. We will keep you posted!

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