Magnitude 4,2 earthquake in Bárðarbunga volcano

Shortly after midnight of 8-April-2016 a magnitude 4,2 earthquake took place in Bárðarbunga volcano. This earthquake activity was shallow, most depth was around 3 to 5 km. Few earthquakes took place at 7 to 11 km depth, suggesting a magma movement at depth. Nothing suggest that magma reached shallow depth this time around.

The earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Iceland Met Office.

The second largest earthquake in this activity had the magnitude of 3,5 at the depth of 4,3 km. Other earthquakes in this swarm where smaller in magnitude at different depths. Magma did not reach the surface in this earthquake swarm, this appears to have been a movement of fault lines do to stress changes at depth due to magma inflow. I’m expecting continued earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano in coming weeks and months.

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21 Replies to “Magnitude 4,2 earthquake in Bárðarbunga volcano”

  1. I am sticking with my shallow rhyolite magma emplacement idea,even though the other blog banned me permanently for posting a picture of a grizzly bear lol.This must be more than just ring fault movement due to settling after the 2014 eruption?

    1. There doesn’t seems to be anything suggesting an older magma being in Bárðarbunga volcano. I don’t know why that is the case, it just is.

      If you are looking for a volcano with such set-up you only need to look at Öræfajökull volcano, that is doing something and that volcano is well known for rhyolite eruptions in the past (big ones, that only last ~20 hours).

    2. Another option is movement on the ring fault due to uplift of the caldera floor caused by deep chamber magma influx?

    3. There’s absolutely NOTHING to suggest there’s any rhyolite in Bardarbunga.

      1. JB: We’ve heard all this from you before, both here and on another forum. It’s been discussed and rebutted. You’re behaviour has already tried the patience of the moderators of that forum and, having had a permanent ban lifted and been given many second chances, you have now been banned permanently.

        Last time you were banned on the other forum this one became your focus and you then tried the patience of many people who contribute to it. Unlike the other forum, this is run by one person. Geyser, JB, or whatever your name is, please show some respect.

      2. Andrew I never implied that Bardarbunga was rhyolite dominant only that there could be some there and that could be contributing to some of this activity.This link to an article on “eruptions blog” from 2014 mentions the role rhyolite has played in some eruptions in basalt dominated Iceland.I admit that I am probably wrong and that’s fine that’s the great thing about discussions ,you don’t have to be correct,just have ideas that hopefully contribute to discussion.

      3. Askja volcano is different than Bárðarbunga volcano. It has a long history of felsic eruptions. The reason for that seems to be that magma collects at depth and doesn’t go and than new fresh hot magma enters the system and everything goes to hell.

        The risk with Bárðarbunga and Askja interaction is that magma from Bárðarbunga might be hotter than magma currently in Askja, they also have different chemical composition, making it so that if magma from Bárðarbunga enters Askja the result is going to explosive one. That risk is currently not over, since there is a good chance of new dyke that might reach Askja volcano system.

        As for Bárðarbunga volcano, it does not have felsic magma. At least currently it does not seem to form such type of magma. Why that is I don’t know.

    4. The really interesting question here isn’t whether or not there’s Rhyolite in BB.

      The really interesting question is how long it’s going to take JB to get the bee out out of his bonnet, untwist his panties, and realise that…

      1. His attempts to prove that he “Might not be wrong” have already met with success. Nobody seriously believes that there is Rhyolite there, but we’re all with Descarte in accepting that the only statements that can be proved are “I think” and “I am”

      2. He’s stopped being interesting, and that’s sad, because he did used to be interesting. Now he just sounds like a sad little internet troll, desperately trying to prove his pet theory, or at least prove that his pet theory can’t be disproved, so that he can regain a little bit of self respect.

      I hope it’s soon, because this constant rehashing of the same argument is very dull, and it’ll be nice to have JB back as someone who makes entertaining and informative contributions.

      1. Well Peter despite everything you just said,Jon gave an interesting answer to my previous post and that must be educational to the readers?I only brought the topic back up because of the ongoing clusters of quakes in those 2 particular spots,NE and SE but mainly NE,why is their shallow activity there and only there now?

      2. There seems to be an weak spot or spots in the NE part of the caldera. It is also present in the SE part of the caldera. To the NW are cauldrons have formed over the recent months due to increase in hydrothermal pressure. If that is a pathway the magma is going to take is impossible to know. Hydrothermal areas suggest that magma is already at ~1 km depth in areas already, even if it has not erupted at the moment.

      3. That is a puzzle?Shallow earthquakes NE and to a lesser extent SE and yet the cauldrons indicating hydrothermal activity is NW?Does that indicate the most active area of the caldera is in the NW quadrant,or does that indicate a part of the same process,just a different effect in that area due to a different geology in that area?So the SW is a quiet zone or is there activity there as well?

      4. Just one more thing Peter,on reflection I should not have gone back to the other blog,that was a mistake and it is probably a mistake to come back here as well,too much history and I have no credibility remaining as a poster to effectively post and it’s time to move on.This just needed to be said to stop the animosity and destruction of good will here,I shall stick to reading the blogs from now on to check for developments.Again sorry for this post that unrelated to things volcanic.

  2. As stated several times by Jon, it is extremely difficult if not impossible to estimate wether the weak spot(s) give way to intrusion. If you could hack a volcano Follow The Magma is like Follow The Money.

  3. Well said Porsche928 !
    I realize this is possibly another unknowable read but is the activity in the area of Herðubreið directly related to the activity in Bardy or Askja or is it some event all on its own? Seems to be that when things are rocking in Herðubreið it gets a bit quieter at Bárðarbunga or is that just my imagination?

  4. Don’t be to hard on JB. This is an open discussion forum and everyone is entitled to there’s. I personally don’t think he is right, but everyone has there own thinking and some of his posts turn up interesting arrivals. If we berated everyone with different opinions, it would get very boring.
    More too the point is there some sort of a cycle in Bard as it seems to be a weekly thing, that’s getting slightly stronger each week.

  5. If some of the folks from Volcano cafe are reading this,could they tell the administrators of that blog that I (JB other name Geyser ) are not masquerading as another user on that blog.I do not have that capability,as I only have very basic computer skills.I still read that blog and I am distressed that another poster is being singled out as me in disguise.I have moved on accepted that I can no longer post there and for me that is the end of the matter.

  6. Hi JB, long time since I last wrote, but I keep reading the blog. The Bardarbunga volcano in history showed only basaltic effusive or explosive eruptions. No silicic eruptions. There is a good summary to read about:

    Importantly, there is written that silicic eruptions only occurred at the Torfajökull volcanic system which was prompted by the Bardarbunga-Veidivötn system. But this (minor) silicic magma is genetically not related to Bardarbunga volcanism.
    The best proof for no rhyolite/silicic rocks at Bardarbunga is to go there and study the rocks, or read the literature about it. After thousands of years of basaltic activity, it is almost (or is) impossible, to have now a change to rhyolite. Hope that helped. You have to support your theory with facts, otherwise it won’t be a theory anymore. That’s the case.

  7. Most eruptions will be basalt,because it is more eruptible,as well as being more dominant in Iceland in particular.When was the last explosive fully rhyolite eruption worldwide?They are infrequent,that to me tends to suggest that the more evolved the magma the more provocation required to initiate an eruption,as rhyolite is quite common ,yet the eruptions of it are less so?This possibly means that emplacement of rhyolite mush can reside in the shallow crust ,for hundreds and even thousands of years without explosive eruption,just creating geothermal areas and periods of intense seismicity?

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