A retrospective look at the February 1993 east rift zone intrusion at Kīlauea volcano, Hawaii

S. Conway, C. Wauthier, Y. Fukushima, M. Poland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The February 1993 dike intrusion in the East Rift Zone (ERZ) of Kīlauea Volcano, Hawai'i, was recognized from tilt and seismic data, but ground-based geodetic data were too sparse to constrain the characteristics of the intrusion. Analysis of Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) JERS-1 satellite reveals a maximum of ~30 cm of line-of-sight (LOS) displacement occurring near Makaopuhi Crater in the middle ERZ of Kīlauea. We model this deformation signal as a subvertical dike using a 3D-Mixed Boundary Element Method (3D-MBEM) paired with a nonlinear inversion algorithm to find the best-fit model. The best-fit dike is located just to the west of Makaopuhi Crater striking N50°W, extends to within 100 m of the surface, is ~1.3 km in length by ~4.2 km in width along strike, and has a total volume of ~7.4 × 106 m3. In addition, a post-intrusion interferogram from JERS-1 spanning 1993–1997 was analyzed. Guided by previous results, our model for the 4-year period consists of opening of the deep rift zones by about 0.5 m at 3–8.5 km depth beneath the Southwest Rift Zone (SWRZ), ERZ and the summit. A sub-horizontal detachment fault is connected to the seaward side of the vertical dike-like source to mimic the décollement known to exist beneath the volcano. We classify the 1993 dike intrusion as a passive intrusion similar to those that occurred in 1997 and 1999. Passive intrusions lack precursory inflation at Kīlauea's summit, and the likely triggering mechanism is persistent deep rift opening combined with seaward motion of the south flank along the basal décollement. Passive intrusions make forecasting and hazard assessment difficult since they are not preceded by inflation nor by large increases in seismicity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)241-251
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research
StatePublished - Jun 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology


Dive into the research topics of 'A retrospective look at the February 1993 east rift zone intrusion at Kīlauea volcano, Hawaii'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this