Volcano Watch: Kilauea gets weighed in
Measurements of gravity can be used to determine how mass is distributed beneath a volcano. At Kilauea, the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory performs routine microgravity surveys to monitor volcanic activity and to determine changes in gravity. Those changes can indicate whether magma is accumulating in a volcano’s magma reservoir. The surveys measure small gravity changes over time at precisely controlled locations (“benchmarks”) spread across the volcano’s summit region.
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