Mauna Loa Observatory

Mauna Loa Observatory is an atmospheric research facility that monitors and collects data that is related to the atmospheric change since the 1950's. The observatory is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

As the observatory is remotely located and there is a minimal influence from vegetation and human activity, it is ideal to monitor the constituents in the atmosphere that can cause climate change. These atmospheric observations assist with the movements of the volcanoes on the island of Hawaii including Mauna Lao Volcano.

Mauna Lao Volcano is the largest volcano on Earth and one of the five volcanoes which form the Island of Hawaii. It is an active shield volcano meaning that eruptions are silica-pool and quite fluid like. The eruptions are non-explosive and have relatively shallow slopes.

The volcano is observed not only by the Mauna Loa Observatory, but also Mauna Loa Solar Observatory which observes the sun; both of these observatories are located near the summit of the volcano. Tours of the observatory are available on selected weekdays and bookings are essential. Office tours are also available with can be guided, school groups are also welcome to participate in the office tour, transportation is not provided by the observatory, visitors need to arrange their own transport.

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