Mauna Loa Solar Observatory (MLSO)

MAUNA LOA OBSERVATORY IS CURRENTLY CLOSED. The site closed on Nov 28 when the volcanic eruption of Mauna Loa began. The eruption ended on Dec 13. Lava destroyed at least a mile of the Mauna Loa access road and power lines at approximately 10,000 ft. elevation. The site is without power and inaccessible except by helicopter. NOAA made a flight to the site and reported zero to very little ash and no obvious damage from the eruption. Roadwork will begin when the lava has cooled enough for crews to safely begin new construction. All updates available at the Mauna Loa volcano eruption page. For general information see the USGS Volcano Update Page.

LATEST UPDATE - March 7, 2023: We do not expect to reopen MLSO until May at the earliest. Over one mile of the Mauna Loa access road is covered by lava that has an average depth of ~30 feet. Power lines to the site were also destroyed. See complete update.

MLSO acquires unique observations of the Sun’s atmosphere in support of NCAR’s goals to address critical gaps in understanding the climate and Sun-Earth systems, and to provide research and observations to reduce damage and disruption from space weather hazards.

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