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U.S. Geological Survey
Open-File Report 02-460

Sulfur Dioxide Emission Rates from Kīlauea Volcano, Hawai‘i, an Update: 1998-2001

By T. Elias and A.J. Sutton


U.S. Geological Survey
Hawaiian Volcano Observatory
Hawaii National Park, HI 96718


Sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission rates from Kīlauea Volcano were first measured by Stoiber and Malone (1975) and have been measured on a regular basis since 1979 (Greenland and others, 1985; Casadevall and others, 1987; Elias and others, 1998; Sutton and others, 2001). A compilation of SO2 emission-rate and wind-vector data from 1979 through 1997 is available as Open-File Report 98-462 (Elias and others, 1998) and on the web at The purpose of this report is to update the existing database through 2001.

Kīlauea releases SO2 gas predominantly from its summit caldera and east rift zone (ERZ) (fig. 1), as described in previous reports (Elias and others, 1998; Sutton and others, 2001). These two distinct sources are quantified independently. The summit and east rift zone emission rates reported here were derived using vehicle-based Correlation Spectrometry (COSPEC) measurements as described in Elias and others (1998). In 1998 and 1999, these measurements were augmented with airborne and tripod-based surveys.

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