When the lava meets the sea, it cools quickly while boiling the ocean into steam. This results in a distinctive texture: the quenching produces a glassy outer surface from the lava cooling too quickly for crystal structure to grow. This insulates the inside of the globs, trapping any dissolved gas as bubbles and allowing internal microcrystal growth from the slightly slower cooling rate.
Kilauea is the youngest and southeastern most volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii. Topographically Kilauea appears as only a bulge on the southeastern flank of Mauna Loa, and so for many years Kilauea was thought to be a mere satellite of its giant neighbor, not a separate volcano. However, research over the past few decades shows clearly that Kilauea has its own magma-plumbing system, extending to the surface from more than 60 km deep in the earth.
The Hawaiian name "Kilauea" means "spewing" or "much spreading," apparently in reference to the lava flows that it erupts. Eruptions have been Continuous since January 3, 1983. It is estimated that the first eruption of Kilauea
has between 300,000 and 600,000 years ago.
Lava entering the Pacific Ocean, from the Kilauea volcano on Hawaii, in Volcanoes National Park. It is the East Lae'apuki entry point of the PKK lava flow. This volcano has been erupting since 1983, and this lava flow has been active since 2004.
Kilauea Volcano on Hawaii's Big Island puts on an amazing show on 10 Feb 2013. Shot from a boat at extremely close range, so close the ocean was boiling hot !
Lava finally reaches the Pacific Ocean at Kamokuna after a seven mile journey from the Pu'u O'o vent in Kilauea Volcano.
A small black sand beach is formed when the surf quenches the hot lava.
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