Two earthquakes in Grímsfjall volcano

Earlier this morning there where two earthquakes in Grímsfjall volcano. There size was ML3.5 at 09:06 UTC and ML4.2 at 09:22 UTC. I am currently unsure about the depth of this earthquakes. This earthquakes take place in a area north-east in the Grímsfjall volcano system. But according to news this area has been seeing a increased earthquake activity in recent weeks.

No aftershocks have been detected since this earthquakes took place. But currently the weather is rather bad in this area, so that might be the explanation for the absence of earthquakes that should have followed this two earthquakes. According to the news the Icelandic Met Office is monitoring the area for more earthquakes or signs that a eruption might be starting. So far nothing indicates that a eruption is about to start in Grímsfjall volcano.

The area that was active today (13th of January 2011) in Grímsfjall volcano.

Icelandic News about this. Use Google Translate at own risk.

2 jarðskjálftar við Grímsvötn (Rú
Snarpur jarðskjálfti við Grímsfjall (Ví
Fylgjast náið með Grímsfjalli (
Jarðskjálfti við Grímsfjall (

Blog post updated at 13. January 2011 at 22:51 UTC. Picture has been added to the blog post.

158 Replies to “Two earthquakes in Grímsfjall volcano”

  1. The IMO is continuing to have problems with the locationing of the quake.
    Here is their last update, and it is weirder than before. It is still the automatic system trying to review itself.
    I think that they changed the program when they started to integrate the new SIL-stations at Myrdalsjökull, and that it didn’t work properly. So now it is stuck in a loop trying to understand what happened where, and at what depth. Interesting.

    1. Here is the odd data.

      13.01.2011 09:22:27 64.400 -17.250 14.4 km 3.8 90.01 1.2 km ESE of Grímsfjall
      13.01.2011 09:22:27 64.084 -17.261 1.1 km 3.9 54.47 15.4 km WNW of Skaftafell

  2. Where is Skaftafell?

    IMO still seem to be leaving the 3.9 Skaftafell or quality only 54.47 on their list as being a real earthquake.

  3. Okay, now I have checked.
    All of the tremor-stations across Iceland stopped updating 15 minutes after the quake.
    So there must be some kind of computer meltdown at IMO.
    If it had only been at Grimsjöll it would have been a good sign of quake damage or eruption, but not since all over all of Iceland has stoped refreshing.

    I wonder what all the dingbats conspirationalists are going to do with this tidbit? Hm…

  4. OK, thanks for clarifying that. Why don’t IMO take it off the list if it isn’t real? They have been updating the other entries all day, so why not that one? Any ideas? or do they think it really is real? They did take it off at one point, but they put it back! I suppose if their computer system is playing up, perhaps they can’t take it off the list now. Or perhaps, they just don’t really know where it should be and it is a real quake which happened somewhere else – position unknown – hence the low quality

    1. Nah, they have already done a manual, that is the one being reported in the media in Iceland and that Jón has reported. But I think they can’t put into the IMO-page we are looking at due to technical problems.

      So what we are seeing is a computer system trying to autocorrect itself.
      I suspect they have some sorter of master-system low level AI-algorithms for autocorrectioning, and that those have gotten gobsmacked from having to sort out a large quake right under the measuring device. So it is trying to calculate ever slightly more correct probabilistic results out of to little data.

      Ie, the AI is trying to be intuitive, a good way to have a frozen computer.

  5. Oh, the IMO must have mucked up their computers on purpose to hide a doomsday eruption which has started in teh run-up to the apocalypse – it must be that!

    So, we don’t know for sure that Grimsvotn isn’t erupting now then?

      1. Yes, they shure would. I was just having fun with all the conspirationalists.

        Thing is that the ‘puter is having problems, and Grimsjöll is really out in the blue yonder of wilderness, and it is even to stormy for a flyover. So, only time will tell.

        But I guess that a true conspirationalist will say that the Green Lizards have landed to steal the nuclear-bomb powered combined gas-spreaders and SIL-stations to feed their young eggs with, naturally before they kidnap 1036 rednecks in Wyoming to do anal probings on them, all paid for by a Belgian waffle-cartell.

      2. Not the HAARP transmitters fried IMO’s computers when they caused the earthquakes?

      3. Odd it all stopped immediately following the earthquakes. Maybe a storm/earthquake(s) has caused power cut problems or networking problems to one of their processing sites. Or maybe the urgent need to divert computer power to resolve what the earthquakes real details were, means they have switched something off. What happens if lightning his SIL stations? Does it register as earthquakes?

      4. Oh many good questions.
        I will try to answer them.

        1. This was most likely a logical loop in the automated locationing system.
        2. I think they do not have a lot of computer power, so that froze most of everything we are seeing.
        3. They restarted the computer doing the calculations and manually stoped it from restarting the loop.
        4. If a lightning bolt hit the SIL-station it woudl probably fry it permanently. But it would not damage any centralized computer. But if a bolt hit the ground close by or a lightning-rod (I would put up one!) it would create a slight concussion wave that might show up as a real weak-ass quake.

      5. Lightning happens very rarely here in Iceland. I think I remember 4 times in the last five years – which it always made it to the news.

      6. I can tell you what happens when a lightning hits a SIL station.

        It stops working until it is repaired by a new set of hardware for the one that did burn over by voltage overload. This actually has happened in the past in Iceland, a thunderstorm did take a few SIL stations back in the year 2006 I recall.

      7. Haha…That was humour in the true spirit of Douglas Adams; The hitchhikers guide to the galaxy. 🙂

      8. Actually, I just put together some “real” conspirationalist theories.
        Green lizards are supposedly masked and runs the world as politicians to ensure that we kill each other. Gas-spreaders are from the gastrail/contrail myth and the rednecks with anal-probings are in many books and stories, and the Belgian waffle-cartell is of course from the first breakfast of the inital Bilderberg-summits.

        I love to study conspirationalists 🙂

  6. Found something that autoupdates correctly.
    Even though the Godabunga SIL is not updating, the longterm plot is.
    The storm ontop of Eyja today is hard enough to make the tensormovement plot reach the highest level since the Eyja-eruption. Go figure.

    1. Yes, but to be quite honest, I don’t trust data coming out of IMO at the moment. None of it, until they get everything working again.

  7. The quakes have been updated. One is now real at Grismfjäll, M3.8, quality 90% at ¨~14 km~depth. The another seems to be a shadow quake at Skaftafell, M3.9 Q 55% at 1 km.

    1. I still think that is results from the logics-loop. If it had been manually done it would have been 99,0. It just arrived at as good an automated answer as possible.
      My guess is that the depth and location now is right (with the data from GRF omitted), but that the strenght is wrong. I would still say 3,9 to 4,3 is the correct number, with the higher numbers as the most likely. And the reported manual calculation is 4,2 and I would say that is correct.

  8. It does look like everything is updating again now and they haven’t lost the data they were slow to make available.

    It looks to me like Grimsvotn is not going to go up this time, but is the wind really hard enough to cause what is shown on the tremor plot of Godabunga? Also the focus of all recent earthquakes in Mýrdalsjökull seems to have shifted away from Eyjafjallajokull recently and be more centred on Katla now.

    1. Yes and no, much of the quakes have been around Fimmvörduhals, and that is a part of Eyjafjallajökull volcano (after all, it where the eruption started), and then we have the non-stop activity in the background at Godabunga (which might be a part of either volcano, or a future volcano to be, it is after all a crypto-dome) and then we have Katla bopping on and off. So I would say there is a bit of activity over all the area.
      If I would have to hazard a guess I would say that right now it is 50-50 which volcano is going to erupt next. But the longer Eyja is dormant, the more it swings towards Katla being the next to erupt.
      But none of those two are frequent erupters. The 3 most likely to go off are as always, Hekla, Grimsfjöll and Askja, with Hekla and Askja as the two most potentially dangerous ones.

      1. No I am basing it on the long time of inflation, the long series of swarms, the inflations (two spots), and it generally being a highly active volcano that is overdue.
        There has also been quite a lot of warnings about the volcano from the volcanologist comunity. There was actualy quite a few who expected it to go off in 2010, but instead the other of the “pregnant” 3 volcanos went “boom”, Eyja.
        There is an upcoming book about it from Prof. Haizel Rymer (of gravitetic fault plane fame) about Askja.

  9. @ Carl
    ( alf ) is Alftagrof SSW from Katla
    Coordinates: 63° 29.275’N, 19° 11.063’W (ISN93: 490,811, 331,438)

  10. Well Carl, since you now have to depart from the amusing ALF, I might have a go at translating Álftagróf for you. Álft is Icelandic for Whooper Swan and gróf is a cleft , groove or even some kind of cleavage, so now you should have the neccesary ingredients for a new mental image of this station.

    1. And I who thought it came from Alfta (river) and grof (gorge, dell) Ie, Rivergorge/Rivendell. But I guess I was confused and used the forn-nordic word for river and assumed it was the same in Icelandic.

      Nah, I think I will try to stear away from mental images of “the cleft of a swan”.

      1. Well, what’s wrong with that? We have in the Finnish Lappland plenty, plenty of names for places which refer to male genitals or (female) breasts.

  11. According to Icelandic news this might be the largest earthquake since the year 1934, when a magnitude 4.5 earthquake did happen in Grímsfjall volcano. That earthquake did start a eruption in Grímsfjall volcano.

    So far everything remains quiet in Grímsfjall volcano.

      1. That doesn’t make good press. Saying it is the biggest, sells newspapers etc. You do not believe the frills the press add to stories do you? Reporters license (to exaggerate).

    1. I’m sorry but that’s completely ungrounded. According to USGS-data there was a M5.4 quake in 1975 and a M4.0 in 1980.

      1. As much as I like the USGS, I have to question their accuracy on Icelandic data.

        I did a correlation of the timestamps from some USGS listed quakes with the SIL listing, I could barely get the timestamps to line up, and even then the magnitudes were way off… and not in a predictable manner. (USGS Mw vs the M and ML listing in SIL)

        SIL’s gear is in country, USGS gear is on an info share basis or located at range.

      2. USGS is good for US, but not always for Iceland. Not so odd since the USGS do not have euipment locally. IMO states that there where was a beginning 5,4 at Bardarbunga with a swarm that migrated to Grimsvötn. It is well publicized in an abundance of papers. Google Scholarize it and you shall find 🙂

        Yes, and that is why I think this was just a close call. And also no signs yet… 🙂

      1. I am actually surprised that pretty much nothing at all happened at the tremor plot for GRF. Judging from GRF, it was not even a near miss.
        But I guess we will have to wait for a couple of days to really be sure.

      2. Caveat-The following are unrelated side comments:

        Funny, coincidentally, the activity level on the dreaded San Andreas Fault (SAF) in California near San Francisco has also increased significanlty in the last week with a 4.5 on the SAF and a nearby 4.1 on a sister fault and recently several smaller (2-3’s) rare quakes on the southern portion of the SAF. That whole So Calif area is buzz of activity lately. My brother is a geologist and states none of his cohorts will travel into that area without a “quake bag” (backpacks with 2-3 months of survival supplies) and some even take mountain bikes with them. LOL

        One retired geologist stated there is a big risk of a major quake on the SAF in March 2011. ( He got lucky once before in one of his predictions which seem to follow his theory re: the gravitational pull of the moon.

      3. I plotted all the Mag 1.0+ there last night and it looks pretty interesting. It doesn’t leap out and point at something… just looks interesting. Just North of that mess in the SoCal plot… is a lonely pretty deep quake… about 51 km down. And, it’s a bit south of the turn to the Mendocino triple junction. Snuggled up under a relatively shallow and persistent swam that has been rattling a mountain for a bout 2 years now.

        Meaning? Beats me. But it’s at the the point in the San Andreas where it makes a pretty tight turn and it’s very deep as San Andreas quakes go.

      4. Is that near Petrolia? 1994 was the last large quake in the Medicino Triple Junction (MTJ) and given the frequency of large (>7.0) quakes there, one would not be surprised to see another go off in the next several years or sooner. I am wondering if the slip occuring near Frisco is related to the one you mention.

        Good article for understanding the tectonics and volcanism of MTJ, one of the most rare and seismically active areas in the world where 3 plates collide.

        Interesting small article on the 7.2 El Mayor quake

      5. Dunno what it’s near, but it’s coords are 38.9367°N 122.4348°W at a depth of 51.1 km

      6. And coincidentaly there was a program about the San Andreas Fault in Swedish television yesterday.
        I think that making a bet on SAF quaking sooner or later is a safe bet. But sofar I haven’t found a prediction for SAF from Keilis-Borok, the only human who have succeded with predicting 2 quakes (and missing one hell of a lot, and a couple of ones that never happened). Be that as it may, he is the best of them. But as we have learned the hard way, we are not there yet.
        Personaly though, I would get nervous if Keilis-Borok said there would be a big one, sofar he has a hit rate of 50 percent.

    1. This is correct, and the focus depth is either not determined yet, or is very shallow. Earthquakes are very common here, so I wouldn’t worry to much. In my experience is more of a doomsite rather than a site with scientific purposes.

    1. Thanks for the link, Peter. I’m kind of confused by these two tremors and no swarm by Grimsvötn. In my amateur belief we should be seeing some jökullhlaups any soon.

      1. I don’t think so. Not before a new eruption. The lake below the glacier is empty after the last glacier run.

      2. There probably have been smaller earthquakes and probably mayby also a swarm, but these got in the noise of the current storm over Iceland.

        Regarding the great depth of the quake, 14km, my guess would be that this is just a major step untill the next eruption, but not an immediat sign. If I’d have make a prediction, based purely on feeling, I’d say that an eruption would be nearly inevitable within half a year, and probably within 1 or 2 months.

      3. Thank you, Chris and Pieter, to call me back to my senses. Maybe after yesterday’s experience from Etna we keep thinking that volcanoes are there for us to switch them on and off. Didn’t work with Merapi, neither will it for Grimsfall or Etna.
        Meanwhile, we can pass the time speculating, but over more reasonable basis.

  12. I have updated the blog post and added a picture of the area that was active today. Note that it forms a line, this is most likely a fault line.

    I think what might have happened today was a dyke intrusion taking place in Grímsfjall volcano. But it only lasted for a short time and stopped after ~30 min of activity. But it is a chance that this intrusion re-starts again in Grímsfjall volcano at any time. We just have to wait and see what happens next.

  13. Is it just me or does all the “bigger” EQ´s beneath Vatnajökull seem to set off other areas of interest? Always when there is a minor or larger swarm/individual EQ it seems to start activity at some other volcano beneath Vatnajökull.

    Could the “rattling” cause the different magma deposits to “stir” so that this is the result?

    This is of course when the volcanoes does not share magma..

    1. Might be some merit to it due to the hotspot being under Vatnajökull, but it would be hard to prove.
      I have another theory, activity goes up after a large or hard swarm out in the Reykjaneshryggur. The theory here being a bolus coming creaping in under Iceland that way.

  14. I haven’t had what one would call… a stellar week.

    Shredded differential gears, a smart phone that has decided that operating systems are blasé and it’s just gonna sit there and wait for a new firmware flash… an Ultra 320 drive in a Raid 5 set-up that thinks flashing the fault light is a neat thing to do.. though it’s the new drive… meanwhile the original drive that was ordered overnight is sitting in the back of a truck somewhere in New Mexico with the other ground shipments…

    Yeah… good week.

    So, Grímsvötn, the ultimate lurker, spits out a couple of impressive quakes and rattles a few cages. I finally get around to getting a plot that can augment Jón Frímann’s excellent plot, and the quake(s) get downgraded yet again. (grrr…)

    Anyway, here is a different plot. The new quakes are the yellow ones, the red fuzzy patches are all of the 2010 quakes (anything prior to two days ago) and set to show areas of concentration in seismic activity… all placed on a Bouguer anomaly map from “Volcanic systems and calderas in the Vatnajökull region, central Iceland: Constraints on crustal structure from gravity data” by Gudmundsson and Högnadóttir.

    Essentially they turned into:
    64.429 -17.256 1.3 km Mag 2.1
    64.421 -17.261 6.1 km Mag 1.4

    I did some poling around, and was unable to locate a good representation of what lies at 14 km… but after doing the plot it turns out that nothing happened down that that I can wrangle into a plot. (the data changed)

    Those depths put these in that area where we have seen that line of quakes that arch upward to the NE and turn towards Hamarinn. Not that there is anything to it… just that they seem to fall into that path.

    Oh well… stay warm… and dry.

    1. Nah, they keapt the afterchochks, but removed the main quakes to not get computer freezes. Systems over half the planet recorded the large one.

      Sorry to hear about your week, hope things get better!
      Explains why you disapeared, missed you and your plots.

  15. @all:
    The quakes are not lost, they (probably, I am dead certain), they had to remove them by hand to not freeze up the system. Every time they tried to run the quake positioning program they frooze up thing. So they took them away entirely and since then it is running fine.
    There where a 4+ quake yesterday, no talking about, and there where massive computer problems after.
    The problem with plotting them is that it is not the quakes or the strength that is dubious, it is not even the positioning. Instead it is the depth that is very hard to position. But as far as I got it was dead center under Grimsfjöll at 12,1km depth at strenght 4,2, the second one was at exactly the same spot, but at 5,7km and 3,5 strength.

      1. Don’t look like it, but even if she vomits it will most likely be a small one. If one goes through all the data it is only two that has been large (on my scale…) and that is Laki and Saksunarvatn. And the last one was 10000 years ago. So in historical times it is Laki, sometimes I think that was just an attempt of reputation building from this mostly peacefully erupting volcano. Jökulhlaups not withstanding, those can be spectacular.

        No, the volcano that is making me more nervous than any other on Iceland is Askja. Especially since it looks like she might be heading for a regional fissure eruption. If that one goes all the way from Herdubreidartögl to Askja proper then we are in trouble. Also, she has a tendency to have lavadome collapses with 3 of them in postglacial times. One bad and underestimated momma in my opinion, and also the most “pregnant” of our volcanos.

  16. @Renato:
    My wishes too go to those affected by the mudslip and flooding. I hope you and your family are not affected.

  17. I can of get of impression that lava under Grimsvotn is very thick, viscous, so often resulting in failed eruptions in recent times. Maybe this will lead to another explosive eruption, particularly with so much ice on top of it. But this is my naive opinion.

  18. I think Gromsvotn merely is not ready to erupt. When it’s magma chamber is a bit fuller, I think it will go – and it is filling all the time. Eventually it will reach the point it is full enough, then it will erupt. Keep watching the inflation!

    1. It is fuller than it was at the 2004 eruption by far, but the combined moment tensor is not at equal levels with the levels of 2004.
      I would say this was really really close, if there had been more afterchocks then we would have had an eruption.

      If you compare the 2 curves of combined moment you can see that for a time before the last eruption there was quite a lot of quake activity resulting in rapid combined moment increase. This time around the curve so far has been much flatter. This leads me to think that Grimsvötn need quite a lot of quaking before erupting to open up the ducts and also to release enough gas to build presure. Without pressure you can have as much magma as you wish, but there wont be power enough to “pump it up”, with the gas acting as the pump.
      I would though say that yesterday probably was the start of the final sprint to an eruption. Against this is that it seems as the amount of gas release yesterday was much lower than I thought it would have been, so the problem seems to be that the gas content in the magma is low.

      1. Interesting -it is still heading there though! It looks just a matter of time and not too long!.

      2. The steeper part of the slope for 2004 eruption took roughly 2 years to go. If lady G. now continues with the present slope, it will take another few years. But, if the slope steepens now to anything like before 2004, she can launch before the end of this year.

      3. My guess is around the end of summer up untill 31 of december, if that doesn’t happen it will erupt on the first of 2013 (for obvious reasons).
        And if it still happens inbetween those 2 periods, it will still be counted as 2013 for the well known reasons of the excerpted year.

      4. So when your country drills into volcanos to get your power and pumps water down (which will turn to gas if it gets hot enough unless the pressure is too high), there is a risk that they could be adding more gas to the volcano system and that could be responsible for triggering an eruption at one of your power site????? If now, why?

      5. Because you need a lot of pressure to keep water dissolved in magma. None of this boreholes in Iceland pumps water down as far as I know.

      6. Ah, my country does not drill into volcanos since we do not have any. Sweden is totally volcanically inactive 😉
        But I do work a bit with it, but not in my country.

        Now to answering your question.
        There are two version of geohydrothermal energy extraction. One is that you drill down untill you meat a warm enough spot, around 150 to 200 degrees C is ideal. Those holes are normally not that deap. In that hole you insert a tube that runs both ways in a closed loop. So there is idealy no water escaping into the ground. This is also normally not done into volcanos, instead one does it into areas with hotsprings. Kraflavirkjun is though drilled into a volcano of course. But it is still a type 1 powerplant.
        The sedonc versions are the DDP-experimental versions where you drill down to, or close to tha magma. Here you can either use a type 1 closed loop tube. Or, you can try to find a cavity and drill 2 holes into it (one feeder and one recipient). Here of course the temperatures are much higher, so the energy out-take is potentially wast. The risks are though much greater, so you need to be hellishly carefull with what you are doing.
        The Icelandic DDP at Kraflavirkjun is intended to be a closed loop type, so they say that they do not need to monitor the effects that much closer than they have before. The other active project is performed in Mt Fako, and is still in a fairly early stage of mapping the innards of the volcano, but test drilling will start in late 2011. That is a chamber type, problem with chambers is that they are filled with highly pressurised gas, so you have to be really carefull and bleed out the gas it contains so you do not get a blowout. For obvious reasons that particular volcano is today the most heavilly monitored place on earth. The ramifications if anything happened and it caused fatalities would put an end to pretty much everything concerning geothermal plants.

        Problem I see with the other one is that it is actually suspected that the type 1 Kraflavirkjun actually caused the Kraflafires. I have warned them about their drilling (they have drilled into rhyolitic magma) and the lack of monitoring, but with no effect. This is why we declined participating in the Icelandic DDP and started our own project. Safety is adament for us, something that BP should have thought about, and we do not wish to be the BP of geohydrothermal powerproduction.

        I hope that answered your question, otherwise, feel free to ask more on this subject.

      7. I do not have a clue what word “sedonc” is, I do not even know which word I intended to write.
        And “meat” should be “meet”. One should never eat and write at the same time… 🙂

      8. The words of Snorri goði from year 999 or 1000 came to mind when I read your comment; “it is actually suspected that the type 1 Kraflavirkjun actually caused the Kraflafires” His words were; “hverju reiddust goðin þá hraun það rann er vér nú stöndum á” ( mod. Ice. transl. mine) In english -with whom were the gods angry when this lava we now tread upon came to be-.
        Blaming the drilling for this episode is so far fetched that it boarders on absurd. I was also quite surprised to read your explanation on how a geothermal powerplant works. Here is a link to a fairly new report on Krafla station in it you will find a diagram on page 42 illustrating how this is done,
        You need to study this a little bit better I’m sorry to say.

      9. I think you didn’t really understand a word I wrote.
        For those who don’t understand or wish to Giggle the report from Mannvit about the proposed part 2 of Kraflavirkjun. And also in a way to JBH.
        The Kraflavirkjun 2 is still not built, the system is not (as far as I know) further than into design stages. What has been done sofar is deep range mapping, drilling, design and environmental studies. The drilling part is known as the Iceland Deep Drilling Project.

        What might have confused JBH is that I simplified a bit to make things a bit clearer for the original poster.

        JBH, FYI, the company I am a board-member in builds and operates geothermal plants, among them some of the icelandic “type 1s”. Why I simplify things is because this is a blog about volcanos, not powerplants.

  19. Todays main seizmic fidgeting (earthquake swarm) seems to be Kverkfjöll. What do wwe know about eruption habits there? Does it normally just sit there earthquake swarming, but not much else, or does it suddenly erupt – How much warning? Do we know if the area is inflating?

  20. I would tend to agree with Carl. Askja seems to be a nasty piece. Although another event between Myrdalsjökull and Vatnajökull would probably not be nice either. Laki will probably not erupt again as it was a fissure eruption in the 1700 with multiple cones but what is to say that a new fissure wont open up?
    Anyhow a new Skaftar fire event would be bad..really bad. But that was a combination of three volcanoes erupting if im not mistaken and the risk of that happening again is probably smaller than the risk of actually getting win7 working properly.

    And this leads me to my next question…Why on earth is it so quiet in this area? No EQ´s or nothing.
    Is it a lack of instrumentation?

    1. Sorry, but in which area?

      Lakagigar has had several fissure ruptures actually, but only one that big. Some even say that Laki might be a volcano on it’s own. So yes, it could very well erupt again. But thing with Grimsvötn is that it has erupted more then 30 times (known) and there are probably twice that many unknown. And only 2 of those during the last 10000 years have been large.

      Okay, so we should then have a Skaftar fire now? My Win7 works beautifully. Windows Fista on the other hand was real baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad.

      1. A whise decision.
        It sent me on a long run of experimenting with other Opsystems. After a bout with Solaris X I went further out into the “big whig” territory of odd Opsystems. I ended up with Oberon (still runs on my fileserver, brilliantly unhackable).

        For me Win7 is the first working Op from MiffoFrost. I will forever wonder about Findows Fista and the Magical Blue-screen of Death.

      2. Love the blue screen, be one with the blue screen, be the blue screen.

        BTW, did I mention that the corrupted O/S on the phone was WinCE ?

        I used to have various ring tone capability on it… then the service provider pushed a mandatory O/S update out and all phones had to be re-flashed. This was about 3 years ago. The phone worked fine… with the exception of locking up if you tried to change the ringtone. And it only got confused about the battery charge state about once a month.

        Now it’s dead.

        So, since I liked it so much I got a new phone with a different O/S.

        Ah the Micro$soft mantra. Be everything to everyone… poorly.

      3. Haha ok..I should have written “Insert operating system here” instead of Win7. 🙂

        The area I referred to actually is the entire stretch between myrdalsjökull up NE to Vatnajökull. The area should be volcanically active but there are no noises. No tectonic noise and no magmatic as far as I know. I have yet to see any tremor, EQ or anything.

        Why is that? What I mean is that the rifting goes through that area and there are sometimes ALOT of noise in Iceland when the plates start grinding but never here….

      4. I have to hypothesis about that.
        1. The area is very tensile, ie. that it acts like a rubberband. It stretches for a long time without any large quakes, but when it snaps you have either a Laki or a Elgja moment. There have been quite a few lava-floods in the area except these two.
        2. That it is actually locked down by two features that have locked against each other. This would also build up tremendous power before releasing.
        I think 1 is more likely due to the homogenous thich layers of lava that seems to build up a large portion of the crust. Ah, while I am at it, two more theories.
        3. All the lava has lubed it so well that it slides with very little friction, but that should have stoped the lava-floods. But it can still be like this, and it is actually the remnants of Laki doing the lubing.
        4. Lack of equipment, but I do not buy this, we should still se anything above 1,0 and there should be one hell of a lot of those.

      5. Your first theory actually sounds quite plausible. The fact that there are alot of EQ´s in relative close vicinity to this area supports the “rubber band” theory. I think I will go for that until someone proves it differently. 🙂

    2. Askja is not that dangerous, it had a catastrophic eruption in the year 1875 and a caldera collapse at that time. The next eruption might be something like the Askja eruption of 1961. Here are more details on that eruption,


      Last year there was a harmonic tremor pulse in Askja volcano, so it is clear that it is getting ready for a eruption in maybe 10 years time (?).

  21. Fissure eruptions follow normal tectonic pattern. They build up tension until it breaks, normally by a large fissure eruption if the area offers that.

    Tectonics in basic,

    Here is a science article on Veiðivötn fissure eruptions.

    It says this there,

    “Three large eruptions took place in this area in not, vert, similar 1480 A.D., not, vert, similar 900 A.D. and not, vert, similar 150 A.D., respectively. Each eruption produced approx. 1 km3 (DRE) of basaltic, and minor amounts of silicic lava and tephra on fissures up to 42 km long. No evidence is found of smaller eruptions during this period. The estimated eruption frequency, one eruption every 600–800 years, implies that this part of the Veidivötn fissure swarm is inactive for long periods between relatively large volcanic events.”

    I only get the abstract.

  22. Good morning everyone.
    Thanks for your supportive words. I was planning to go to the affected region (1,5 hour drive from home) on the weekend, but it this is now described as “the worst natural tragedy” ever happened in our country. It is a wonderful region, beautiful valleys and mountains, many sophisticated resorts – all gone now. Well, it isn’t the first time something like that has happened, so I think authorities have their part on the blame.
    As for Lakagigar, I’ve been reading on the article provided by Pieter that it does belong to Grimsfjall system, a fissure swarm. Doesn’t appear it has a central volcano.

    1. Isn’t your Red Cross (or other local organizations) working properly, ie. assisting people ?

      1. Authorities and rescue efforts are doing what they can: federal and local governments have gathered great sums to help affected people and property.
        The main concern now is to areas which are still without the reach of any kind of assistance, totally isolated from blocked roads, rivers and the bad weather (fog for the choppers to land, etc). And the forecast for the whole region is more rain, so, all we have to do is to wait and hope for the best.

      2. It is just so awful – people’s lives ruined and many lives lost. Many people in grief. I am so sorry for all affected.

      3. The most heartbreaking aspect of this tragedy is that it slammed the poor people. According to an article I read, most of the homes destroyed were “shacks” belonging to the poor. Katrina hit the impoverished the hardest too. Most of those poor people in New Orleans claimed that they got temporary housing after the storm but no long term assistance. I hope that the donations actually reach the poor some how in this case.

      4. Do you know what plans the government has in the nearest future, I know the root system for for tropical forests are shallow so if you are expecting more rain, something needs to be done fast.

        Would Brazil need assistance in replanting affected areas, money, helping hands ?

        Anything we can do ?

  23. And if it were to happen again, our stupid airline rules would ground the planes prevent us sending food packages to you lot in Iceland! Perhaps we would be able to get our local fishing boats to smuggle you lot some food though.

    1. The above post referred to the Laki eruption, but has been separated from it’s context by other posts since I added it.

    1. I’ve Read the whole article, supports “the theory” quite well

      Will grimsfjall give a big bang when it erupts?

      1. Well, according to my crystal ball —– probably not – just a nice interesting one, far enough away from people to inflict any real problems on any icelanders. An ideal type of eruption to watch. Likely to upset the owners of the monitoring equipment perhaps, which may well get destroyed.

    2. I tried to respond to this earlier today… but got tangled up in the Capcha.

      Just as well, I needed access to the document reference in order to point ‘yall at it.

      A few months ago, there was a paper that went over the idea that dike intrusions can serve the purpose of locking or unlocking the faults along the plate boundary. This would probably tend to have an effect on whether or not something not good was in the works as far as large scale fissure events go.

      “DYNAMICS OF VOLCANIC SYSTEMS IN ICELAND: Example of Tectonism and Volcanism at Juxtaposed Hot Spot and Mid-Ocean Ridge Systems” by Agust Gudmundsson

      This link ought to work… but it it doesn’t, copy the title, or part of it into Google and it should spit out a link.

      1. @Rustynailer

        That’s a nice report.

        In essence, what they did was to run a series of simulations through some mathematical models to see which scenario could generate the historical quake events.

        One way of doing this is to set up a grid of cells…or data nodules that interact with each other. The calculations from one cell use the initial input conditions, and then have an effect on the input to the neighboring cells. Using this they determined that the stress load from the initial Ms=7.1, 1784 quake could have caused the M2=6.7 event that happened two days later.

        In order for that to be valid, the 7.1 would have had to have been on a short fault of about 20 km length in order to have been a likely cause the 6.7.

        Your link is literally packed with useful tidbits of information.

        Here’s one:

        “The estimated thickness of the brittle crust in the SISZ varies from about 5 km at the western end to about 12-15 km at the eastern end”

        Below the brittle region, the crust becomes more ductile. That means that in order to get a quake that we can see, the forces have to be much higher in order to actually do something that will even show up on a seismograph. This is because the material has a tendency to flow (ooze) rather than fracture.

        It might be a resolution issue with the math, but of you look at Figure 3 from that document you can see a knuckle (my term) at about 6km depth on both the P and S wave velocity model.

        This is a manifestation of the transition from brittle to ductile. This SIL model is for SW Iceland and pretty much is an average of the whole region. The nuanced part of what these guys do is to take in consideration of how this changes from area to area in that region.

        Now.. here is the real question or item that hasn’t been broached… but it sits there like an 800 lb gorilla.

        These quakes occurred in 1784. What else was going on at the time?

        8 June 1783, Laki opened up with its large fissure event. This ran until February 1784. In August of that year, these two large quakes occurred. Also, Grímsvötn was acting up with eruptive activity.

        All three areas are neighbors on the plate boundary.

        I can’t add to this other than to point that out.

        You have also manage find something that I’ve been looking for for about a month.

        “An empirical formula derived for Iceland, relating the local magnitude, ML, and the seismic moment, is given by log(M0)=10.5+1.3ML”

        Many thanks!

      2. I am very pleased you found so much in that.
        Thanks for easily read explanation.
        Very interesting.
        Kind regards,

      3. No prob, that Mo formula has been kicking my arse to no end.

        The “Local Magnitude,” which is the closest modern version of the original Richter magnitude, is based off the movement of the ground. Each location/site on Earth had different density/velocity characteristics and converting that into a value of energy requires a bit of knowledge about the region.

        I had been unable to find the conversion specific to Iceland. I did find a few references and quakes that were reported in different agencies (same quakes) and was able to get a kludged formula… you know, held together with masking tape… but it wasn’t anything that I would consider anywhere near valid.

        Now all I have to do is to find out why my Mo tally for Grímsvötn rockets past SIL’s data when I do the same graph.

        Here is theirs… and it’s up to date:

        This shows the amount of seismic energy that has occurred there, and how long it has been since the last eruption. The idea is that once it expends close to the same amount of seismic energy, it might pop the cork and give us a show.

    3. Haha!
      Dang, and I thought I was the first one on that one 🙂

      Nice to hear that you are okay!

      “Full of sofisticated resorts”, and I who in my innocence have wished to go to Rio for all of my life. And now I learn that other places around is more paradisical and sofisticated. Gah, I will need a local guide to find the sofisticated pleasures around Rio 🙂

  24. from web –
    Geo / tectonic maps | Iceland has long been a favourite of those interested in geography, what with the tectonic plate boundaries at Thingvellir national park, truly a wonder of nature to behold. has geographic maps with specific tectonic information showing the volcanic systems in Iceland including central volcanoes and fissure and dyke swarms, both active and extinct, together with the principal fracture zones. For those who want to learn about the geographic wonders of Iceland, shop for the proper maps at

  25. Anyone know what’s up with Kreppuhraun tonight. Jump in tremors that are not on the station at Brúarjökull?

    1. I am waiting to see if anything happens to the 2 closest stations to Kreppruhrain, the Grimsfjöll and Bruarjökull.
      But sofar no increased activity on their tremorplots. No GPS-movement on Bruarjökull and Grimsfjöll is doing it’s normal weird dances on the GPS-plot, so it is probably normal.

    1. There is not a glacier flood coming from Jökulsá á fjöllum. It has not been reported by the media and IMO.

      This also appears to be a normal behaviour for this glacier river.

      1. Login page, but I take your word for it.

        I guess that the frost quake thingy released som smaller water body.
        But them, what the fudge is happening at Kreppuhraun then? It looked like a nice small jökulhlaup, but if it isn’t a Jökulhlaup, then it get’s down-right intriguing.

    2. No now you are off, ice hinders measurements. The dot is black = no info, it must be colored to show right info like Eldvötn.
      Didn’t check it yesterday, could have been black then too.

  26. i don’t think Carl was trying to be difficult… he was just commenting on some of his observations and readily accepted more information……….
    ((Now if You WANT to see difficult…. just tune into my house when teenage grandchildren are in full force))………. 😉

    i enjoy Carl’s enjoying the blog………… and he has a lot of input.
    Hugs to Carl..

    1. I know, just teasing Carl

      Anyway, the article I pointed to says Kreppuhraun lies between 2 faults, in essence it can explain why it’s on the move now as before & might not mean anything ?

      1. The rebel and the rogue, meaning Lurking and Carl.
        I may have to write a poem about them one day.
        Anyway, they are wonderfully colorful blog characters and great contributors of all that erupts.

Comments are closed.