A series of complex events at Kīlauea Volcano, Hawaii, 17 June to 19 June 2007, began with an intrusion in the upper east rift zone (ERZ) and culminated with a small eruption (1500 m3). Surface deformation due to the intrusion was recorded in unprecedented detail by Global Positioning System (GPS) and tilt networks as well as interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) data acquired by the ENVISAT and ALOS satellites. A joint nonlinear inversion of GPS, tilt, and InSAR data yields a deflationary source beneath the summit caldera and an ENE-striking uniform-opening dislocation with ~2 m opening, a dip of ∼80° to the south, and extending from the surface to ~2 km depth. This simple model reasonably fits the overall pattern of deformation but significantly misfits data near the western end of an inferred dike-like source. Three more complex dike models are tested that allow for distributed opening including (1) a dike that follows the surface trace of the active rift zone, (2) a dike that follows the symmetry axis of InSAR deformation, and (3) two en echelon dike segments beneath mapped surface cracks and newly formed steaming areas. The en echelon dike model best fits near-field GPS and tilt data. Maximum opening of 2.4 m occurred on the eastern segment beneath the eruptive vent. Although this model represents the best fit to the ERZ data, it still fails to explain data from a coastal tiltmeter and GPS sites on Kīlauea's southwestern flank. The southwest flank GPS sites and the coastal tiltmeter exhibit deformation consistent with observations of previous slow slip events beneath Kīlauea's south flank, but inconsistent with observations of previous intrusions. Slow slip events at Kīlauea and elsewhere are thought to occur in a transition zone between locked and stably sliding zones of a fault. An inversion including slip on a basal decollement improves fit to these data and suggests a maximum of ~15 cm of seaward fault motion, comparable to previous slow-slip events.
Additional publication details
Geodetic evidence for en echelon dike emplacement and concurrent slow slip during the June 2007 intrusion and eruption at Kīlauea volcano, Hawaii