Friday update for Bárðarbunga volcano on 17-October-2014

Bárðarbunga volcano eruption in Holuhraun did reach one big milestone today (17-October-2014). It is now the largest eruption in Iceland since the eruption in Laki (Skaftáreldar) in 1783 – 1784 eruption. By volume the lava field in Holuhraun is now larger than the 1947 eruption in Hekla volcano that is 0,8 km³ by volume and took 13 months to erupt that amount of lava. Current size of the lava field in Holuhraun is larger then 59 square kilometres (km²) in size, or around 0,83 km³ by volume according to University of Iceland Tweet on this matter. University of Iceland also has new map of the lava field, I just don’t know how to link to that image here.

Earthquake activity today in Bárðarbunga volcano and Tungnafellsjökull volcano to the left. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Largest earthquake today had the magnitude of 4,4. Second largest earthquake today had the magnitude of 4,2. Other earthquakes have been smaller today and there has been less earthquake activity today compared to earlier this week (Week 42). There was not big change in the eruption in Holuhraun today according to the news, the magma that did erupt today was reported to be more gas rich then in past few days or weeks. There is no major change taking place in the dyke area according to GPS measurements from the area around Bárðarbunga volcano. The GPS mesurements can be found here. New images of the eruption in Holuhraun can be found here. So far I have not read or seen anything more taking place in Bárðarbunga volcano. If everything stays quiet (I’m sure it won’t do that), I plan to have next update on Monday 20-October-2014 if no major activity takes place.

I wish everyone a good weekend.

Article updated at 23:46 UTC.

Increased risk of eruption in Tungafellsjökull volcano

There is now an increased risk of eruption in Tungafellsjökull volcano (this is my opinion only). This volcano is different than Bárðarbunga volcano and is not connected to it on crustal levels (46 km top layer of the Earth crust in this area).

Tungnafellsjökull volcano is to left of Bárðarbunga volcano on this image. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

There has never been any historical eruption in Tungnafellsjökull volcano far as I know. So I have no data to work with in terms of analysing historical behaviour of this volcano. There is a stress factor at work here from Bárðarbunga volcano, this means that all the activity and drop of the Bárðarbunga volcano is changing the stress in nearby crust, this is the idea for the moment about how activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano started. There is an increased risk of magma rising from depth into Tungnafellsjökull volcano from all of this. I don’t know why that appears to be the case (based on the data that I got), since magma coming into Tungnafellsjökull volcano is from its own deep root system that is connected to Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Even if magma is entering Tungnafellsjökull volcano it does not mean an eruption is imminent. The risk of an eruption in Tungnafellsjökull volcano is increasing at the moment, it might get lowered again soon, but this is the current status. Tungnafellsjökull volcano continues to have Green status on Icelandic Met Office website.

If anything more happens in Tungnafellsjökull volcano I am going update this article or post a new one.

Bárðarbunga update for 16-October-2014

Largest earthquake in Bárðarbunga volcano today (16-October-2014) had the magnitude of 5,0. Second largest earthquake had the magnitude of 4,6. Other earthquakes have been smaller. There have been more earthquake activity today compared to yesterday. The eruption in Holuhraun continues as it has been doing for the past 1,8 month, currently there is nothing to suggest the eruption is about to end any time soon. I don’t have any other news of the eruption today.

Rúv has new video of the Holuhraun eruption and it can be viewed here. It shows the power of this eruption clearly. The text is in Icelandic and there is no (or poor) audio with the video.

I am only going to post short updates when nothing special is to report since day to day changes of this eruption are not great. I am going to post updates to this eruption while it continues. Even if that is going to be for 10 years or longer.