Katla volcano earthquake last night

Last night there was a earthquake with the size ML2.3 and with the depth of 1.3 km inside the caldera of Katla volcano. This earthquake might well be just part of the normal summer and autumn earthquake activity in Katla volcano. But at the moment it is hard to know for sure the difference at the moment.

Current area of activity in Katla volcano. It is mostly inside the caldera. Copyright of this picture belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

The ML2.3 earthquake in Katla volcano caldera last night. The P and S wave markers are unset. Picture Licence is Creative Commons.

The frequency spectrum of the Katla volcano caldera earthquake. As can be seen this earthquake has a lot of low frequency in it. Picture Licence is Creative Commons.

The Katla volcano caldera earthquake as it was recorded on my Hvammstangi geophone. It is quite unusual to record this small earthquake at this distance. This is filtered at 1Hz. Picture Licence is Creative Commons.

This earthquake here is from Goðabunga this morning. But Goðabunga is part of Katla volcano. But it is yet unknown if it is a volcano system on its own or not. The earthquakes from Goðabunga are different then the earthquakes from Katla volcano caldera, as can clearly been seen on this pictures. Picture Licence is Creative Commons.

Besides this minor earthquake activity. Everything remains quiet in Katla volcano at the moment. When that is going to change is impossible to know.

Blog post updated at 21:10 UTC.

222 Replies to “Katla volcano earthquake last night”

      1. Actually, the wind observations near Katla were for Vestmannaeyjar. The maximum guest at Katla are only 7 m/s. Opps.

  1. @Lurking et al.
    Comment regarding the Lurking Plot:

    First of all, thank you for this masterpiece!

    Even though I “knew” what I thought I would see it is still so very different from seeing it in reality. What surprised me are how the sprungur leaps out of the imagery, a tranversal dyke and on and on.
    There is something that I did not expect here. It really looks like an interferomtric image. Ie, the same that you see if you send photons through a double slit onto photographic film. (Classic experiment in quantum physics that proved that the small-scale wave-theory is the same as the large scale wave-theory (among other things).
    I never expected to see third and fourth order harmonic wave-bands on a earthquake plot. Bet here they are clear as glass.

    What the heck am I going on about?
    Well, pressure is obviously travelling from west to east causing quake-lines that shorten according to third order harmonics, with a fourth order pitch-decay ontop. We can even measure the wavelength. Coincidentally this is exactly what the theory says a gravimetric wave should look like in a solid body, but nobody has found one in reallity.

    Back to my original question to the material.
    “Can earth-quakes in the Hengill and south Iceland area cause borehole strainmeter transients? And if so will sufficiantly powerfull earthquakes affect Hekla in a direct explainable way so that Hekla erupts?”
    Yes, earthquake energy will travell mechanicaly as a third order wave that will disproportionally affect Hekla as a third order harmonic point. And as Hekla is a tectonically “dead zone” an inordinate amount of energy will be released inside the zone effectively dumping all the third order harmonic wave-front energy in the Hekla locality.

    Sometimes science is beautifull as it comes together and makes sense. I was expecting something much more ephemeral and hard to prove in my search for a connection between Hengill area and Hekla. Without your plot Lurking this would not have been possible. I though have a stupid moment here, I should have guessed it was as obvious as harmonic energy waves. I guess I tried to not see everything in the world as a wave for once, and missed that the surfs up… 🙂

    If you do a 3d plot I think colourcoding by magnitude would say more than colourcoding by time.

    Thank you again!

    1. Wow, thank you so much Lurking for this plot, and Carl for the follow-up!

      Looking at the plot two things had seemed strange to me: the alignment of the quakes with the sprungur and the apparent insignificance of Hekla. I usually don’t have anything intelligent to say about the very technical comments here, but this time Carl, your explanations above totally clarified my observations, and I am once again in awe of the processes of nature.

      1. I actually clarfied my own thinking for once…
        This might be one of the few times I have come up with something that could have been publishable outside of my own field.
        Nice that you liked it!

    2. @ Lurking Once again you have produced a masterpiece. Thank you.
      @ Carl I understand the “waves” you see. It truely is remarkable how the relationship between the faults have affected the quake occurrences and distribution.
      I am surprised that Hekla does not show up with more occurrences . Does this mean the magma chamber is more or less full? If the magma chamber is now full then I guess eventually something has to give and a large quake over to the west or in the central rift area could possibly trigger a chain reaction and a sudden eruption. If the chamber is not full then I would expect to see more quakes as magma continues to push upwards. Of Course there is the added possibility that magma is intruding into other faults off the main dyke or chamber. Who Knows? How can we tell?

      With all that action around the lake I can see how something may happen volcanically in the area unless the constant quakes are keeping Hengill and others in the area “relaxed ” and not pressured up!
      Carl et Al more debates please .
      Is the density of the quakes around the lake due to the MAR tectonics or the mantle plume or both?

      1. To explain why Hekla does not show up more often I have to explain the concept of ductility/brittlenes.
        As rock get warmer it can “bend” more easily, thus it can take on more stress without breaking. And as we know, rock breaking under stress is what constitutes an earthquake. Since Hekla is gets considarably warmer than normal rock inside it can withstand a lot more pressure before the rock breaks.
        I will start with the common banana. We all know it as a rather mushy thing. But let us freeze the banana to minus 10. Then we end up with a material that is considerably harder than concrete. We are after all talking about fiber reinforced ice here. It is pretty much impossible to break a minus ten banana, if sharpened before freezing you can kill someone with it if you use it as a dagger. If we freeze it down to minus fifty it though changes, it then breaks into pieces if you drop it onto the frozen ground. It has become britte, it breaks easy under pressure from your hands. As it gets warmer it get more and more able withstand pressure (ductility), up until the point we hit zero degree celcius (forgot to say I am talking in Celcius) it becomes the mushy banana again (for the rock that would constitute the onset of melting), and if we heat it further it would melt into a soupy liquid. So, inside Hekla we have a large area that is ductile banana, then we have mushy banana as lining and then an area with liquid cooked banana.
        The ductile banana is very hard to break, thus few earthquakes. Neither the mushy nor the soupy banana can break at all, so in those banana parts of Hekla earthquakes are impossible.
        So it is very natural for Hekla to be tectonically challenged. The same goes for the dead zone ranging from Katla up towards Grimsvötn. It has been heated into ductility by Eldja and Laki and soforth.
        The actual quakes would not need to be large at Hekla, last time it all started with a 2,5 quake. I know it seems counterintuitive, but remember that it is a very weak volcano after all those eruptions in rapid succession.
        There is some evidence that magma is intruding into a dyke stretching in under Isakot. But if it will erupt that way is more uncertain, even though a bit likely.
        But it seems like Hekla often start just after a larger quake over at the Sprungur area since a lot of energy then will propagate as thrid order harmonic energy and get caught in Hekla.
        How does it get caught.
        Well, think church-bells. A normal church-bell made out of bronze will reverberate a lot since it is hard (brittle). The release of noise is the main way of dissipating energy (like an earthquake is a kind of noise. So what happens if that third order harmonic propagation instead hits Hekla? Well it will work as a rubber-cast church-bell. It will when hit equally hard absorb the energy. The form a rubber-bell absorbs energy is by transforming it into heat. And more heat in a volcano… Well 🙂
        I hope these analogies made it clearer. I really tried to avoid math here.
        I think Hengill releases pressure that way, it explains why it stopped erupting all of a sudden. But… Hengill is a rift volcano that just rips open to spew out copious amounts of lava. So, I guess it can change behaviour again.
        I would say that it is due to MAR tectonics. But the closer you go towards Bardarbunga the more the mantleplume would affect if it does exist, and I actually believe it does.

      2. Carl thank you for that explanation. I think I now understand a little more.
        I am happy you didn’t use maths to explain. I struggle with numbers and formulae.
        The changes of a banana’s state is excellent visualisation .
        Carl, are you a Lecturer/Teacher? You should be as you are so good at explaining things.

      3. I have been a lecturing yes, albeit it was a long time ago.
        But my weird analogies are actually how I think. I tend to look at complex problems in images or analogies. I have often found that thinking about problems wildly out of context often makes things clearer.
        But the lecturer in me enjoys teaching…
        No, I am not a lecturer any longer. Currently I am not doing much, I sometimes think I will never do more than sit and watch my neighbours bbq in the rain, and do some occasional sailing. I will probably go rather bored sooner or later and work with something rather annoying and objectionable concerning figs or somesuch.

  2. Looks like the heavy wind is masking IMO’s systems, but Jon’s helicorder shows qhat’s going on… I believe Katla or Hekla is quaking a bit!

  3. It is just wind and other noise on Jon’a geophone, I have seen it like that several times before.

  4. Just a small, but important, correction – Godabunga is part of the Eyjafjallajökull volcanic system, an offshoot from the main vent, and NOT part of the Katla volcanic system according to Sturkell & al 2009.

    To return to the topic, the third geophone recording looks to be a tornillo (magma rising within a conduit). Is it one or is there another explanation for the similarity?

    1. Since that was recorded at Hvammstangi, and if I understood Jón correctly, is the same earthquake as the first image, I would say no as such.
      The change in look is probably wave-degradation in negative part of wave due to media transfer (propagation through bedrock).

      But the wave-form from Katla is very “bubbly”, I would deem that to be magmatic. But, I am not at all an expert on understanding quakes.

      1. This the same earthquake, the time match up. But that is how you know if it is the same earthquake or not.

        I am really surprised to have recorded this earthquake at this distance (~200 km).

        There is also some ocean wave pattern in my Hvammstangi recording, as that geophone is located close to the ocean.

    2. I think the words “inferred as a part of…” is the more correct.
      But yes, now it is believed to be much more likely to be related to Eyjafjallajökull than Katla as believed earlier.
      I am though not as sure as Sturkell is about that. I think they are mechanically linked, perhaps even magmatically linked via a dyke through fimmvörduhals, but not having the same feeder per se.
      There are things pointing against it that Sturkell did not mention. Foremost of those are the wildly differend patterns for tectonic cumulative strain and different GPS-movement patterns.
      But, I am not a volcanologist, I am just pointing out that it seems to lack a bit of evidence.
      I guess we will have the answer when Godabunga erupts, or someone drills down and takes a magma sample… 🙂

      1. Someone, I believe it was Lurking as usual, did an excellent plot of eqs over a longer period (iirc 1999-2010) and this clearly showed the E-connection as you yourself pointed out at the time Carl. The branching-off point from the main Eyjafjallajökull feeder was at approximately 7-8 km depth and went more or less at a 45-degree angle. IIRC.

      2. I remember the Lurking plot in question now, thank you for reminind me. My memory is not as good as it used to be, oddly enough I see things clearer though, the brain is an odd thing. 🙂

        With the continued high activity at Godabunga (and since I trust Lurkings plot since they are hard facts about reallity) I would hazard a guess that Eyjafjallajökull wont be dormant for 130 years this time. Pending that it is a magmatic and not mechanical connection we are talking about, but now that I remember it looked like a magmatic connection.

        It might though slow the Godabungas time to eruption.

  5. There are some tremor changes at Lágu Hvolar. But that might just be the weather. But this change is so small it is hard to know for sure if it is just wind, or something from Katla volcano.

  6. I wonder whats cooking 🙂

    Lots of smoke came out of the ground in Laugardalur some days ago, at first the Police called the city power company and asked them if a hot water pipe had burst in the area, but they said there are no pipes in this area, the Police dug into the ground and found glowing material who looked like charcoals ,firefighters were called to cool down the area , nothing pointed to this being man made and it is a unsolved mistery.

      1. It looked like an old sport arena… Well sometimes things just start to burn, that is why I ask if it was an old peat-bog. They can start burning for nothing and than happily do so for hundreds of years.

      2. There isn’t an old peat-bog in Laugardalur (actually drove past there to find this spot that should have been just opposite the sports hall but didn’t see anything, no signs of firedept. being there) but Laugardalur is a low thermal heat zone, the hot spring in Þvottalaugar is the beginning of drilling for hot water in Reykjavík early last century and installing thermal heat in houses.

  7. I would have tagged this into the thread it belongs, but I didn’t know where to attach it…

    Evidently DivaGIS chokes if you feed it too much data. I chopped the quake sequence down into 5 year chunks and it still puked all over my desk.

    So, I went back to my primary program and did the requested plot in Dplot. To help you get your bearings, I labeled Hengill and Hekla.

    Plan view, color coded by year. Refer to the last plot if you need better waypoints.


    1. It is amazing what a powerhouse the Sprungur south of Hengill is. Interestingly enough Hengill itself looks almost totally dead.
      Odd though that about a third of the quakes at your Hengill-marker are the ones from the last few weeks.
      It is clear that the pattern with the clear sprungur-quake-lines are much clearer during the last two to three years. The ribbon effect is almost razor sharp.
      Beautifull plot Lurking.
      Also a fun little thing, that all quakes behind Hekla is from 2000-2001. I winder if those where a bunch of compression/contraction quakes. But that is just speculation. But for ten years almost totally dead from quakes.
      After seeing this plot I am even more convinced about the correctnes of the “Hengill to Hekla power-transform through tectonic pressure waves”. Or what one should call a theory like that.

      But in the end of the day, that is one hurting mointain, and I mean both South of Hengill, and Hekla.

      1. Ah, I forgot to tell what this actually means. If someone reads this from the IMO you can have somebody do a fourier wave-transform analyzis of the data from the three last wave-bands and it should be obvious. 😉

        It actually means that one could do a cumulative seismic moment count for Hekla. Before this it was believed that Hekla was seismically inert, but this proves that notion to be erroneous, the seismic uptake area are the sprungur area that emanates from south of Hengill. The area is an example of third order harmonic energy transform conduit leading up to Hekla that acts as a recipient of seismic energy release from the sprungur area. It should improve on forecasting Hekla eruptions in between eruptions.
        Have fun with it. But, if someone feels the urge to write something about it, please make acknowledgements under GNU for it.

      2. So, in fact you’re stating, that Hekla eruptions start by exceeding a given value of cumulative seismic moment in Hengill area, like locally for Grimsvötn?!

        That’s a brilliant and very novel idea, indeed!

      3. You know, what’s the hardest part of your theory?

        For most of the volcanic zones in Iceland, the active fissures run along the zone, and the central volcanoes lie within the fissures. So it is very easy the understand, that seismicity of the fissure affects the central volcano and vice versa.

        For Hengill & Hekla, the active fissures (sprungur) run perpendicular to the volcanic zone (SISZ), and Hekla is not situated within those fissures. Hence explaining energy transfer from Hengill area fissures to Hekla is “a special phenomenon”, and hard to understand.

        This is the reason, I said your theory is brilliant. It explains an extraordinary phenomenon. The only thing left to explain is the energy source. Is it mainly tectonic, or is it mainly volcanic?

      4. And since the going out part went down the drain…

        Hengill is a special case too, it is as I believe it a tectonically driven volcano that sometimes has magmatic episodes.
        But, if it is mainly magmatically driven, or tectonically driven, that is a whole other question that would take some time to figure out.
        Hen and the egg question again 🙂

    2. Hmmm interesting, thanks.

      One of the obvious things that jumps out at me is where the earthquakes *aren’t* – the totally aseismic zone to the immediate west of Hekla.

      Any speculations as to what’s going on there? That’s a real hole in the map.


      1. Two factors, one is that it is not in the third order harmonic band, and secondly that it is one a ductile zone as the one I described above with the banana-analogy for Diana Barnes.

    3. To my untrained eye, I would say that that graph looks as though Hekla is on its way to a larger eruption than 2000’s but it looks like we may be a short while away from an eruption.
      It looks like a definate march of magma up to the summit.
      Feel free to tell me I am wrong, if I am (learning curve etc).
      Also the glacial floods that occured at Katla a few months back, anyone know whether they occured anywhere near that anomylous quake activity south of Katla’s Caldera?

      1. I did a large run on Mathematica a few days ago, and yes it looks like a larger than normal eruption is upcoming, but the probabillity said that it will be between december or may.

        The Katla question I will let someone else answer.

      2. Ok, well I have been thinking about this very briefly,
        if the tremors are near where the glacial flood happened. I am guessing over many centuries the rock underneath the glacier has been put under a lot of stress. So I am wondering if maybe there is a cavern under the glacier that is causing a harmonic reading when the ice shifts.

    1. I gave the same data, but not in as detailed way that the Lurking plots gave. According to the paper as the Hengill Sprungur area conitnues to quake it pushes the country towards Hekla where the energy just disapears.
      The new data that came from the Lurking plot is the exact way and form of the energy represented in the movement act and moves towards Hekla.
      And since the way and form then becomes clearer it is easier to understand how to use the data to have an instrument for calculating energy influch into the Hekla area over time. Thus making another (and sofar missing) important instrument for longterm (years) prognostication of Hekla eruptions.

  8. Well, I don’t think it’s too old. I saw it on my visit to Reykjavík in the spring – it looked like maybe from 1960’s or 1970’s if I had to guess. (I study architecture as a hobby but I don’t know Iceland building styles, so I could be totally wrong.)
    Here is some news in English about the mysterious smoke. I don’t really think it has anything to do with volcanoes though so it’s a bit of an offtopic post, I hope it’s okay. Maybe someone local has more information on it.


  9. There has been a minor earthquake with Hekla volcano. The size is about ML0.9, depth is 6 km. It is poorly located according to the automatic IMO data.

    1. Seems Lady Hekla has become aware of the Lurking plots ~ and Carls la Starnge “cover blowing”!!! Earthquake swarm at Hveradalir too. Remarkable coincidence? Better watch out more on pressure drops on strainmeters.

  10. Earthquake swarm to the SW of Hengill? Also, I may be mistaken but this one seems to be at a rather anomalous depth.

    20.08.2011 01:37:10 64.053 -21.374 13.7 km 1.5 90.01 2.1 km NNE of Hellisheiðarvirkjun

    I don’t remember seeing quakes in this area at this depth before. How deep is the moho in this area??

  11. @ Lurking. Congratulations on two brilliant plots. There is much there to be pondered over and digested….. and I am only on my first cup of coffee!

    OK! I have fed the dog and on my second cup now. My main question is located to the East from Hekla and at Long. 19 30 West. on the 3D image.
    are these quakes under Myrdalsjokull?
    My spacial concept is not brilliant but it looks like there is an uprising of quakes.
    Also the “Waves” of lower magnatude quakes that eminate from the west almost cease as if Hekla stops them going further east.
    Would this suggest that the Katla area is definitely not related to the fracture zone and is getting the energy from below rather that transported from the main rift area?

    I now have brain strain. It is far too early for this sort of activity on a Saturday morning! 🙂

      1. Oh Thanks Jack. But the observation still stands that this Volcano seems not to be connected with Hekla or is it? I shall go away and study some more.

    1. @ Carl
      Do not despair. I retired six years ago and now I wonder how I ever managed full time working, raising 5 children (Three not my own), the household management and producing vegetables and assorted “leisure” activities .
      I now find my time taken up with babies (Grand children), looking after friends dogs when on holiday (Added income), even more vegetable growing, Tai Chi Practice (For my arthritis), and selling on line all the stuff I have collected over the years (Essential additional income)
      Life is never dull and every day a new challenge be it learning something new or Adult kids and their problems.
      I really am enjoying “retirement” but this is certainly a misnomer. I have just left the Rat Race Highway and am strolling and exploring the interesting little side tracks of life ( Like studying more geology ) that I had to drive past when stuck in the Rush Hour.

      1. Thing is just that I should have had about 20 more years minimum in the rat race.
        Since I became a board-member of a fortune 500 company I did it my lifes work to get the rest of the board to understand that owning nuclear power-plants is not a good idea, especially since they are getting old and decrepit. After the Japanese tsunami and the following nuclear accidents I believed in vain that would be the moment I would succeed in getting them closed.
        When that didn’t happen I due to stress and having seen to much I snapped and tried to beat some sense into the rest of the board, thusly ending my corporate carreer permanently. One of lifes small lessons is that if you beat somebody up normally you go to prisson, if you beat up the entire board of a large company you get a very large severence check. Life.
        So, in loosing my temper I probably prolonged our period of stupid and short-sighted power production.
        So I am currently doing a heck of a lot of soul searching (not forgetting my past in weapons tech) to decide what I can do with the rest of my life that actually would be a benefit to the planet.

      2. Whatever you decide to do, please don’t lose your idealism! We need more people on this planet who are trying to make it a better place, and you have a brilliant mind and the ability to make a difference.

      3. I go along with Denise -Marie. I opened a Facebook page re nuclear plants in the UK. Obviously it is not a popular topic….. Yet!
        Carl, you will find your niche.

      4. Join the Revolution and make the ability to think outside the box a perequisite for holding any position above tax collector, welfare officer, politician or other government jobs where the ability to think and apply logic is a liability. 😉

    2. There is no connection between the Myrdalsjökull group of Volcanos and Hekla. The few quakes that do happen on the east side of Hekla that is Hekla oriented is just representations of the little energy that gets through the Hekla energy trap. As such they are insignificant.

    1. I do not really know, but there was another quake at 2 magnitude today.. an some more small one..

      and most of them are inside the caldera ring. Could be interesting..

  12. If you do not already know a new book has been published by Ragnar Stefánsson, Advances in Earthquake Prediction (Springer Verlag, Germany or Praxis, UK), based on 20 years of earthquake prediction research in Iceland.

  13. Is anyone else having trouble with the IMO listing up-dates, I haven’t been able to get the list refreshed since 10am Thursday

      1. @ Carl
        It’s the earthquake listing for the last 48 hours. I’m getting the up-to-date general map of Iceland plus up-dated larger scale regional maps.

  14. Jón, is there not an unusual amount of activity at the Hvammstangi helicorder?
    Some of it looks like earthquakes, but I cannot find any quakes that seems to relate to the activity.
    Is it human activity or?

  15. @Carl LS, given your interests and background, there should be plenty of opportunity for a re-start, hope you find a way to do what you love best. In the meantime you are much appreciated here.

    1. Being courius here, so I wanna know too 😛 Is there anything out of the ordinary you can se, Carl? Can look like there is brown smoke between there, but then again, I haven’t really studied this cam that much 😛

      1. I am a bit curious about that brownish smoke myself.
        But it might just be some groundfog or something. But it started about the same time as a small tremor spike occured.

    2. To me it looks like low-hanging clouds barely able to climb over Hekla and rolling down on the other side…

  16. Yeah, and it still look like its going up.. But that is usally not there, or?

  17. Something seems to have changed inside Hekla. We are currently experiencing a transient, and what appears to be steam coming from the ground, probably it is just graundfog building up.
    The activity is in the Búrfell/Isakot area.
    It is probably nothing though since we have not seen any earthquakes except something small that showed up 15 minutes or so on Jóns Helicorder.

    1. And that it supposed to be brown steam? 😛 Sure there is nothing more happened/happening?

      1. I think the brown/grey comes out of the light comin in from behind the steam.
        I was wondering if there is a thermal event or something. Ie, water that is being warmed up underground and has started to steam. But, I still say it is probably just ordinary boring ground fog.

      2. Ok, thats boring =P Give us a heads up if you figure out if there’s anything else though.. Gonna eat now soon, so fingers crossed nothing happens while I’m away from the computer 😛

      3. I think it may be Chris Reykjavik, Irpsit & That Other Lurker who have collected a pile of used tyres and set them on fire for our mystification. 😉

  18. Two of the largest on Iceland.
    Hveravellir to the north erupted last on 950 AD and Prestahnukur in the south of Langjökull.
    The quake was in the caldera of Prestahnukur, last known eruption 3550 BC.
    It might be dormant or dead, but, it seems to have picked up in tectonic activity and it is known to wait 3000+ years between its eruptions. If it ever erupts again it should be something to remember.

      1. Now that’s a useful map! Pity there’s no maps of the sub-glacial land morphology.

    1. It is another of the transients, but it seems to be doing one of the recalibrations right now.
      We will now in an hour or so.
      One should though notice that Hekla is having some tremor increase too.

  19. Magnitude 7.5 (Preliminary magnitude — update expected within 15 minutes)
    Date-Time Saturday, August 20, 2011 at 16:55:03 UTC
    Sunday, August 21, 2011 at 03:55:03 AM at epicenter

    Location 18.425°S, 168.005°E
    Depth 10 km (6.2 miles) set by location program
    Region VANUATU
    Distances 81 km (50 miles) SSW (203°) from PORT-VILA, Vanuatu
    181 km (112 miles) NW (313°) from Isangel, Vanuatu
    335 km (208 miles) SSE (164°) from Santo (Luganville), Vanuatu
    1835 km (1140 miles) ENE (60°) from Brisbane, Australia

    Location Uncertainty Error estimate not available
    Parameters NST= 22, Nph=0, Dmin=0 km, Rmss=0 sec, Gp=119°,
    M-type=”moment” magnitude from initial P wave (tsuboi method) (Mi/Mwp), Version=B
    Source NOAA Pacific Tsunami Warning Center

    Event ID pt11232001

    1. It’s heading down already… Blaah, I thought it might be a new jökulhaup.

  20. I just returned from Thorsmork. And with big news. Yesterday, on the middle of the night my girlfriend said she felt a small tremor in the hut which I guess it could have been the 2.3.

    But there is more. During the late morning we climbed Valahnukur 465m, which is 5km north of Eyjafjallajokull and 10km west of Katla, and at about 11.30 we felt a big rumbling coming up from the glaciers. Initially I thought it was just another ice quake but this lasted unusually long (like 20-30 sec); we started imagining if something was happening. Do you really think this was the 2.0 in Katla too? The time matches.

    If we felt these two quakes we were really lucky.
    Last year, I also felt a tremor while hiking in Fimmvorduhals, around midday 9th July, that clearly came from Godabunga. I am used to experience icequakes while hiking near glaciers, but all of these I think were earthquakes, since it matches the record at IMO. Besides that, I only felt once a minor earthquake in the SISZ.

    I must confess it’s amazing that I still witness these amazing events happening in Iceland. Just 2 weeks ago, I saw the cauldrons in Hamarinn, and one month ago, the cauldrons in Katla (from safe distance of course).

    1. Irpsit, you lived close to Hekla didn’t you? Or had a cabin around it or some such?
      Anyhoo… I saw something that looked like thermal steam coming out of the ground in the valley between Búrfell and Hekla earlier today. Do you know if there is any thermal springs there? Or if something has showed up?

      1. I live in Grimsnes, just close to Hestfjall, Burfell, the summer house area. That is 50km west of Hekla, and 20km east of Hengill.

        About the Hekla steam: I came from Thorsmork to Selfoss this afternoon, and there was some thunderstorm clouds in the area, and hanging above Hekla as well. There is also some fog around 600m high. It might be that, I haven’t heard anything thermal activity there, nothing on the news.

        As far as I know, there are no hot springs between Burfell and Hekla. We have been driving there a couple of times, we only saw there cold streams. There is also this Icelandic hot pool book, and they don’t have any hot spring listed in that area. But actually, before the last eruption in 2000, people camping reported sulphur smell in that area a couple of hours before the eruption started.

        By the way, your Hengill-Hekla connection is an amazing model. I think the ductile explanation makes perfect sense, in the area around Hekla and round Veidivotn/Laki.

        I am still thrilling over the fact that I just felt the second 2.0 today in Katla. Now, I am really confident that the tremor I felt at 11.30 was that earthquake. It was also impressive to see again how the floods in the area have been changed the landscape.

      2. Do you think the cumulative moment at Hengill is already enough for an eruption of Hekla?

      3. Short answer, yes. The amount of cumulative moment is higher than before the last eruption.
        I think that is why we are seeing more and heavier transients as a run-up towards an eruption.
        Right now we need a triggering factor and she goes. Either that will be a 2,5 or more in Hekla proper, or a 4+ in the Hengill Sprungur area.

      4. Carl, only normal clouds today. There is road in valley between Burfell and Hekla. On dry days there are huge dust clouds from passing cars: Road material is gravel and lots of pumice around. Anyway I had Hekla cam open all day and saw nothing extra. Only cumulus.

      5. Also, to take the doubts about the “steam sightning” in Giglujokull, the glacier that you see in the webcam of Eyjafjallajokull. I saw the glacier today from close, that place is a place where bright snow is, so it glimmers in the webcam. There is no steam there, but huge cracks in that glacier and an amazing amount of rocks carried out by the large flood last year. The whole area is totally different than it was in 2009. Lots of new glacial rivers there.

        Also interestingly, the people there told me, a minor flood also occurred when Katla had that event in July. The waters apparently also escaped westwards from the ice cap, but just a little bit.

      6. The ductility for Veidivötn/Laki is the same, but the processes that causes eruptions in that area is different though.
        But the idea of ductility in hot zones are not actually mine, I foind that one in an article, but then adapted it into an explanation for Hekla (and in a sense for Laki/Veidivötn). The only part that I modelled together was the power connection between Hengill Sprungur are and Hekla. And that actually came out of observation, quake in the right part of the Sprungur area, and within a couple of minutes a transient started. Then I got interested in how that connection looked like, so I naturally asked our resident master of plotting. And when Lurking came with the astounding plot it just came together.

        I live in an area with quite a few 2s happening, but to my knowledge I have never felt them. But when it hit 3s I do, and when we had a 4,2 a last may I thought my house would come down.
        I think one needs to be up on a mountain and close to really feel a 2 like you where.
        But you do live perfectly for feeling a larger Sprungur event from Hengill. I just hold my thunbs that Hengill will not erupt again. In my eyes that would be the worst that could happen to Iceland, even worse then another Laki/Veidivötn due to vicinity to towns and cities.

    1. Rustynailer, you know that you can just create a user-account, then you just log-in and do not ever need to fill in a captcha again:) All that has their names in Blue have accounts.

    1. Oh yeah, that one made me even forget my spoiled outing tonight.
      Beautifull Lurking.
      And however it is plotted the same pattern comes out.
      Thanks for the Bonus-plot.
      Interesting that nature is ordered so hard around third order harmonics, even the joule-plot is that, the energy decay is third order. And for those interested in numbers, that would be yer’ ol’ golden cut, 1.618 and so on.
      Nature is one whacky number-driven place.

  21. Well done Lurking / Carl: fascinating stuff. The more I learn, the more I observe that nature seems to repeat the same patterns on a micro to macro scale.

    Hope you will work on this and publish… I have long believed that one of the greatest things about the internet is that it allows people from different diciplines to join discussion of topics they don’t know anything about, professionally speaking A fresh view often results in novel insights and the cross transfer of expert knowledge from different fields of study; it is an especially good antidote to dogmatic thinking and the tendency for some theories/ opinons in some disciplies being accepted as ‘fact’ without challenge .

    I would be fascinated to see this plot on an Iceland wide scale, but it may be beyond the datacrunching abilities a desktop computer.

    1. Somedays I do think that nature is far much simpler than we ever think and that it is built up of repetitions of just a few scalable building blocks. If you are interested you can read A New Kind of Science by the dude that created the Mathematica program Stephen Wolfram. Or just read the original ideas of my old teacher Edward Fredkin instead, better written and shorter.
      Since easy theories are progressively harder to come up with as they get simpler, I would say that no human is bright enough to understand how simple the universe is. Although Fredkin and his teacher in turn, Richard Feynman did a heck of try.
      As Lurking stated also, the rest of Iceland works differently than this part does. So, to glean anything out of it would take new theories, although, something out to be made out of the Laki/Veidivötn area, but I will wait some time before trying to understand that one…

  22. JulesP

    I would be fascinated to see this plot on an Iceland wide scale, but it may be beyond the datacrunching abilities a desktop computer.

    Actually, it’s not. It’s just a pain in the arse. The Hengill-Hekla sprungur line happens to be in a nice linear shape that lets it’s character stand out with ease.

    In other parts of Iceland, rift zones and spreading areas dominate and may make a signal such as this very very hard to see with all the other stuff masking it. In the Hengill-Hekla part, there isn’t really a defined spreading center, and this (in my view) is an interaction of large scale energy movement as a rift-jump is taking place. Eventually the MAR is going to connect with Iceland down around Vestmannaeyjar.

    It’s made this jump before when the MAR reconnected at it’s current location. Prior to that it connected up around Snæfellsnes. The leading part of the eventual switch has already started, but it’s gonna take a few million years to play out.

    Additionally, this may just be specific to the sprungur. There could be a relationship to the nascent transform fault that is forming at Walker Lane in the Western US, but that’s just a gut feel on my part and comes only from the fact that both areas do not have an established dominant fault.

    I really hope someone does pick this up and run with it… at the wave mechanics level. I’m just a field tech and probably don’t have the requisite skills to coax proof from the data.

    1. NOTE: I am not trying to connect the Sprungur Region and Walker Lane in any way other than as similar mechanisms possibly being at play.

      When re-reading that I noticed that I wasn’t clear in what I had said. My apologies.

      1. I could try to take a look at it, but… I am not at all familiar with the area. So I would need to read up on it a lot first. It took me something of about a year and a half to even start to understand Hekla area.
        Project for another day though 🙂

  23. It would be nice to see if when earthquakes swarm at Hengill relate to activity at Hekla, and if eruptions there are preceeded by larger quakes close to Hengill.

    How about a link between Krisuvík and Katla? Maybe that’s asking too much. And if there is also a link between other volcanoes in Iceland? Askja and Krafla? Vatnajokull and Katla area? At least between Torfajokull and Bardarbunga? Bardarbunga and Langjokull? Just a poor guy speculating

    1. At least there seems to be a link between increased activity at Hengill or Krisuvik and quakes at Langjokull. From what I’ve seen this and last year.

    2. The connection of earthquakes at the eastern parts of Hengill relating to Hekla is allready pretty much proven. I should of course write it down in mathematical form, publish my list of transients and the correlation with quakes at the area in question. But still, it is there. One of these days I will probably write it down and send it to the IMO since they might be the ones gaining most. But, that is for another day.

      I do not in any way believe there is any connection between Krisuvik and Katla. Might though be something between Krisuvik and Hengill since they are both on MAR with Hengill sitting on the actual triple-junction. So any energy going from Krisuvik, and I am not sure it does due to MAR, it would still end up in Hekla and not in Katla.
      Askja and Krafla is allready proven to be mechanically connected. During the Krafla eruptions Askja deflated as Krafla erupted. And afterwards when Krafla refilled, Askja had that very long run of deflation. And incidentally when Askja started to refill, so did Herdubreid and the swarms there started.
      There is no magmatic connection between Vatnajökull and Katla as far as is known. But there might be a mechanical connection. But the Laki/Veidivötn ductile zone prevents us from ever knowing really.
      Torfajökull is an odd bird, I will some day take a better look at it. But I doubt it is related to Bardarbunga. And there is absolutly no relationship between Bardarbunga and Langjökull. Totally different rift zones involved. However, I would not swear about Hofsjökull and Bardarbunga since the hotspot moved from Hofsjökull towards Bardarbunga where it probably is residing today. But, that is perhaps not likely.
      I would in a way like to warn about over-speculating on connectivity. Hengill-Hekla is a very odd connection since it feeds energy from the MAR to an area outside of any rift zone. For most of the other volcanos the connection, if any, is related to the various rift-zones and are dependent on entirely different sets of mechanical models.

      1. Yes, I agree with you, that probably the Hengill and Hekla is the only link with volcanoes from different volcanic belts.

        Torfajokull and Bardarbunga actually erupted simultaneously in 1477, with the Veidivotn fissure linking them. That was a very far reaching link, probably only rarely occurring. Magma from Bardarbunga probably reached the Torfajokull system and erupted there as well. It was a massive eruption.

        Similarly, I believed that there could be a small change this could actually happen between the northeast zone of Katla and the rifting fissures belonging to the western side of Vatnajokull volcanoes. Either originating from Katla or from Grimsvotn. But I guess this would have to due to a massive amount of magma, and that would be rare.

        Some researchers also spoke about a possible link in magmatic pressure between Katla, Eyjafjallajokull and Westman Islands, attempting to explain the long dormancy for Katla based on the eruptions of Surtsey and Heymaea.

        How about Grimsnes? Do you think this volcano is still active? No earthquakes happen usually there, but most occur in Hestfjall, which is deemed extinct. Probably not?

      2. Any connection between Torfajökull and Bardarbunga should be easy to prove by testing of magmatic origin. I tend to go the other way. Heavy tension causing both to erupt separatly, but unison in time and area. That would also explain in part the copious amounts of lava.

        I would be very carefull about linking Katla and Grimsvötn to hard, but they do share a very interesting area in what I call “the dead zone”. So a purely mechanical connection might be in play.

        I would be carefull about connecting Myrdalsjökull volcanos to hard with Vestmannaeyar volcanic field. They do behave rather differently and lack a proper central volcano. But they are on the same rift zone. So mechanically pressure might be relieved by eruptions at either site. And the activity south of Myrdalsjökull might be related to it. But I do not know.

        Grimsnes is interesting in many ways. I do nelieve it is extinct, and I have a suspicion that all the quakes in that area is more related to Hengill than Grimsnes. I would not feel any worry about Grimsnes, it would take time for it to wake up. Compare with Hromundratind that inflated wildly 94 to 98 and then just fell asleep. I guess that we would need episodes like that at Grimsnes to before she could erupt.
        No, if I would worry about a volcano it would be Hengill. It has had root-fillings, it is massively tectonically active, and it has had some of the largest eruptions on Iceland. And it is surprisingly badly understood and researched, and it is not even well defined in location since it has so wildly spread fissures running all over that part of Iceland. And, it is also sadly close to well-inhabited places. I think IMO would do well to actually do more research on it, and put down more equipment on her, but I guess money is an issue.

  24. Lurking,
    RE: http://i52.tinypic.com/xmmjhd.png

    Another nice plot! I used it as an overlay to GE, and noticed that Hengill is 6 minutes north of where it is actually located. Small matter, but just for the record. It should be the same distance below 64° 6’N as it is currently below 64° 12’N.

    I’m wondering if the same vertical EQ bar pattern shows up if a similar plot is made to the west to include Reykjavik? I’m guessing yes, but more closely spaced.

    1. I’ll have to check the plot later. I used the Wikipedia entry for the position.

    2. Well, I’m not sure where the error comes from. I check the data and it is as listed in WackiWikipedia.

      But you know how off that can be.

      Wikipedia – 64.183333, -21.333333
      Global Volcanism Site – 64.08°N, 21.32°W (location of Hengill crater rows)

      If you need a corrected version, here ya go;


  25. Carl, Why would mechanical pressure cause a magmatic eruption? Rather than deep magmatic pressure filling the chamber and therefore the increasing magmatic pressure in the chamber causing the eruption?

    REF from above:
    Jack @ Finland says:
    August 20, 2011 at 09:21
    So, in fact you’re stating, that Hekla eruptions start by exceeding a given value of cumulative seismic moment in Hengill area, like locally for Grimsvötn?!

    That’s a brilliant and very novel idea, indeed!

    Carl le Strange says:
    August 20, 2011 at 13:03
    Exactly, as the quakes progress they cause an increased mechanical pressure in Hekla.

    1. Ah, oh sorry I must have been very unclear somewhere.
      Of course it does not cause a magmatic eruption, and yes it filled through the fissure under Hekla leading down to the MOHO boundary. The magma flows upwards and fills the various repositories of magma just like any other volcano.
      No my theory concern purely trigger effects and tension effects causing contraction of the mountain. The idea came out of me observing that the transients co-shared time with earthquakes in the Hengill area. Quake, then borehole strainmeter transient occurs within (normally) a minute. As soon as the earthquake happened in the right place and of sufficient magnitude, a transient followed, the largest of transients coincided with a then following quake at Hekla.
      So there seemed to be a causal chain of events. Hengill quake, Hekla transient, Hekla quake as long as the initial Hengill quake A) happened at the right place and B) was of significant enough force. Then I backtracked the circumstances around the last 5 eruptions and found the same thing.
      Extended or very strong Hengill/sprungur quake, borehole strain-activity, quake at Hekla and eruption follows. Not all quakes causes eruptions though.
      So I started to wonder why. The obvious answer is not enough magma from the feeding mechanism. But, Hekla is normally sufficiently filled rather fast after an eruption, so something seemed to be needed. And I then came to think of cumulative seismic strain. It is not so far fetched, it works beautifull for Grimsvötn after all. I then went and checked if the sprungur quakes could be counted as cumulative seismic strain even though they do not occur in the volcano per se. After all it is not such a long-shot since Hekla is affected causally by the sprungur-quakes. And as far as I can check it seems to do so.
      The theory is testable, all one would need to do is calculate the cumulative seismic strain between 2000 eruption and the upcoming eruption (data before is a bit scarce to do more backtracking, but I might be wrong on this), and then set a counter to keap track to the next eruption after the upcoming. If the values correspong the theory is proven.
      So no, it does not cause an eruption, that would be ludicrous, but it is a triggering effect for an eruption. I hope I made myself clear on that point.
      Magma must come from somewhere after all 😉

      1. And to be even clearer.
        I am not talking about a magmatic connection between Hengill and Hekla. I am talking about power transferal through a mechanic connection. Quite different. 🙂

    1. Oh what a wonderfully discusting analogy, but in a sense correct.
      The pus in the zit comes from another source (bacteria, and for Hekla magma from the feeding mechanism from the MOHO) than the effect that makes it “popp”, ie. fingers in the actual case of a zit popping, and here the combined pressure from the Sprungur area.
      So yes, tectonic activity of the sprungur area popps the zit that is Hekla with the weight of a part of Iceland…

      Squirt… 🙂

      1. Your zit analogy pointed to something so obvious that I forgot to wite it, I kind of thought people would understand it anyhow. Happy that you figured it out Maynard.
        What is an earthquake? Sudden movement due to rock fracturing, no more, no less. So when a quake happens at the Sprungur area it pushes things aside, that push increases pressure down the line and after a while a new quake happens at a weak point (next third order sprungur) and so on untill you have moved the actual ground quite a lot creating tremendous pressure at the dumping site, in this case the zit henceforth called Hekla. It is energy in the form of minute movement over time due to compression we are talking of as the triggering/zit-popping effect. Should probably have said that and Boston Volcano Heads would not have misunderstood me.

  26. @Carl le Strange, I am sorry to burst your bubble. But there is no Hekla – Hengill connection. But there seems to be Hekla – SISZ connection. But minor earthquakes swarms have been observed in SISZ after a eruption in Hekla volcano.

    Why this happens is not known yet.

    1. Problem is just that there is quite some evidence for it which is stated above.

      I will try to explain this in another way.
      As the MAR runs up to Hengill it divides through the Hengill triple junction.
      As you know the rate of movement is at its largest at that point. WRZ moves up from there among others.
      But the springing point are the Sprungur area where the land is ripped apart. As is proven in the lurking plot we have a trend of lines that are abundantly tectonicly active. These are release points of energy that is mainly pushed towards the Hekla area causing a lot of pressure on the Hekla area. That is pure physics and really not open for argument, either the laws of physics are correct and we have movement due to energy release after the earthquakes, or we do not. We do, proven and testable.
      We also have a lot of other small factors pointing to it, but I have talked about them above ad absurdum. But the point is that those causal and observable chains does not happen when there is a quake in the SISZ. But the SISZ probably have an effect that is crucial still. Think here of a sledgehammer, a piece of iron, and an anvill. For a piece of iron to be pounded flat it needs to be hit with a sufficient force against a point of resistance. SISZ is that point of resistance.

      But hey, I am open for experimentation. All we need to do to prove my theory, or stomp it all over for that matter, is to put a series of GPS-stations running from Hengill to Hekla.
      The first (A) we put between Hengill and the first wave-band, then another (B) between band 1 and 2, then one (C) between 2 and 3, and then one (D) between band 3 and Hekla. And of course two between Hekla and SISZ, the first close to Hekla (E) and one close to SISZ (F).
      First if all we should see the ones west of Hekla drawn apart by the continues fracturing of the rock when it is torn apart. And if there is no other connection between Hekla and SISZ than working as an anvil the stations E and F should be imobile visavi each other or being pushed together.
      But if you are correct, then E and F would be drawn apart too.

      I am fairly certain we would see that I am correct. Although, I am not saying you are not correct also.
      But, the beauty of true science is that it is always possible to test, if not it is not science. Never believe a theory that is not possible to test via an experiment.

      1. The problem is that people think the wrong way around. Let me explain! What is a volcano? Most people and, as far as I can tell from what they say, vocanologists think that a volcano is what they see on the surface, usually a cone-shaped mountain. Wrong! The cone-shaped mountain is just the surface expression of the volcano proper which may run from as deep the MOHO boundary to a few miles below the surface. What is above the volcano proper interacts with the volcano and influences the way the volcano expresses itself – one of the reasons Etna is so hard to understand and explain.

        What is a volcano then? It is a geological mechanism for energy transportation and dissipation, one greatly affected by the presense or absense of water to act as a flux and/or explosive. Iceland is inexorably being pushed up and drawn apart. The crust is not ductile – if it was it would get thinner and thinner and… This means that it constantly fractures and the voids created are filled. In some places, fractures are so frequent and the constitution of what is above such that you get a volcano. In other places (such as the dead zones), the ground for some reason is so resilient that there are no fractures – until there’s a granddaddy of a fracture and a crack of doom opens.

        Think from the bottom up!

      2. Exactly, and very nicely explained to boot 🙂

        I though still think that dead zones are in part due to “regional” ductility. The other reason for it is probably mirroring effects from surounding or interlacing fractures, especially I think there is a combo like that at the Laki/Veidivötn dead zone. But, this is just congecture on my part. But one day I will try to form the conjecture into a theory, and of course try to make som testable prediction that is possible to make into and experiment. Lets keap science high here 🙂

  27. I think Carl is gonna kick my arse… I keep coming up with eye candy.

    I took the data set from my last plot, the energy vs longitude of the individual quakes since 1995 as appearing in the SIL list.

    And I binned them at 0.001°, or about 49.8 meter resolution. This means that all quakes in a given bin have had their energy intensity added to all other quakes in that bin. Its a way of digesting the large quantity of data and extracting something tangible that you can then ruminate over.

    Here ya go Carl. Enjoy 😀


    Oh and for the record, I think Carl is on to something here.

    All energy that exists as a wave, is subject to the laws of propagation for the medium in which it travels. For electromagnetic radiation (radio and light), it’s speed is governed by the index of refraction for the medium. When two wavefronts meet, they will either reinforce or interfere with each other. This effect, commonly referred to as heterodyning, is at the core of a lot of consumer and military communications equipment. Its how you wrangle an extremely high frequency down into a range that you can work with. (making an intermediate frequency that still carries the intelligence/information in the original waveform)

    For physical waves, such as sound, similar laws apply. We see this in music where one set of discrete tones is pleasing while another is not. In both cases, the waves themselves are subject to the index of refraction. Water, where sonar is used, has a much different refractive index than air.

    Now we move to the realm that Carl is talking about. Its a bit ephemeral, but something operating at geologic scales is going to be hard to nail down. Whatever it is.. be it a stress wave, or long term pressure pulses, is going to have similar constraints placed on it. (refraction and/or interference patterns) We just happened to have been around when Carl had that “aha!” moment.

    The patterns are there, it’s just going to take a while for someone to figure out how to prove or disprove it.

    To whoever it is, one thing that may be useful is to narrow the data set down to a thinner slice of the sprungur slot. My slice is pretty wide and may have more noise in it than is tolerable.

    Direct cause and effect? No, that’s not what Carl is saying at all. He’s talking long term. That is what we are seeing in the plots.

    1. Amazing work, Mr lurking and Carl, I do not understand everything. Just enough to go for and study, great team work and thank you to everyone for getting to this.

      Could a stress wave, or long term pressure pulses cause this so called “146 year cycle” that i read from time to time? or are the dead zones stopping these pulses until a laki or Eaja happens and then allot of volcano’s follow in the years after?

      Thanks again everyone for this simply complex site.

      Science is being made over this blog.
      Kudos to Lurking and Carl!

    3. Kick your arse? No way 🙂 More like having a beer or nineteen with you some day.

      The image cleared out a lot of noise and made it very clear how thin those sprungur are. Those very clear spikes are after all only 49,8 meters wide.
      This surprised me a bit, but it is most natural when thinking about it. The wave mechanical energy moves through the media untill it hits a weak spot, fractures the rock, causing a new wave mechanical motion going forward to the next spot and so forth. Of course I am not talking about instantenous quakes running rampant here. I am talking about gradual build up over geological scale of time. But he intriguing part is how short the geological time seems to be in this area. I guess we could find similar places quite often, but that would require data over hundreds, thousands or even millions of years. I guess that once again Iceland is proving to be a perfect geological laboratory with the timescales greatly sped up.

      I think the pattern is proven allready, it is the exacts of how it comes into form that will be the hard part. I still think that an abundance of GPS:es and a series of borehole strainmeters at the GPS locations would give a lot of significant data over time. One thing we should remember is that the energy is probably not moving in a straight line since the sprungur is not fracturing in a unidirectional way. I guess that the energy (whatever the form) is moving more like in quantum theory (Feynman Path-integral solution, where a wave of energy can move in infinite ways, but in the end “chooses” only one). In Quantum Electro Dynamic theory we cannot discern the actuall way it moves, only where it hits because of the impossibility to observe below quantum-length due to the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. But here we are not hampered like that, we can instrument the shit out of it 🙂
      I hope someone someday does it, it would after all be good to have it proven, or dis-proven (we learn as much or more when a theory is proven to be in error), especially since it would help Iceland a lot in prognosticating either way.

      Yes, I seem to have missed to point out that I am talking in geological terms here, even though they are unusually short here. I am talking about the long-term causal chain that builds up to a triggering effect. Nothing as short as a magma conduit opening up, or an eruption taking place. More like the long-term enabler of an eruption.

  28. I wish I could win the lottery. I would invest in a few GPS markers and pay Carl and Jon to set them and write up their findings over the next few years.
    It is so exciting to watch true science in action. To watch a hypothesis through birth to Zitty teenagehood. I too would like to see this theory mature to the definitive “Yes” or “No”.
    I loved the analogy to zits! Good thinking Maynard. Mushy Bananas, Popping Zits perfect for getting students (.. and “wanna be” geologists on line ), to grasp and remember concepts.
    It’s rather scary! I started here and on Dr Erik Klemetti’s Blog simply because I was fascinated by the superficial evidence of volcanic activity. I am now more deeply drawn into a need to understand How and Why. Thank you Jon for providing a platform for those who know and those who seek to know. (Y)
    I wonder how many young lurkers on these Blogs have been inspired to take their interest and knowledge further.

  29. Lurking’s quake data for Hengill-to-Hekla, plotted in Google Earth, including an elevation profile along a path from Hengill to Hekla (and beyond) …


    Note: The caldera’s for Tindfjallajokull and Torfajokull volcanoes are shown in pink, and are located with very high accuracy.

    1. Very very intriguing actually.
      It is telling that 2 out 44 of the quake lines are actually elevated into mountains on an otherwise pretty plain field. Why the third spot is not would be interesting to know, and of course the fourth.
      I guess here comes the point where I should leave the ball to a volcanologist/geologist. I will though note that the processes on the other side of Hekla has no discernible pattern, except a weak pattern running from Torfajökull towards Hekla. But it is much weaker than anything on the other side.

Comments are closed.