Increase in earthquakes in Katla volcano

During the past few days there has been a slight increase in earthquake activity in Katla volcano. Largest earthquakes in the past few days have reached magnitude 2,8. At the moment larger earthquakes have not happened in Katla volcano.

The earthquake activity in Katla volcano over the past few days. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Interestingly there seems to be a concentration of earthquakes on the east side of the caldera, close to the area that erupted in the year 1918. This might be a clue to where in the caldera next eruption is going to happen, since magma seems to “bore” its way trough the crust and in many occasions that leads to a swarm of small earthquakes [note: This is not confirmed in any scientific way or by a study, this is just my observation of this phenomena]. Currently the earthquake activity in Katla volcano is small, compared to how much activity was taken place between end of August and mid-October. I suspect that current level of earthquake activity is going to continue until next spring.

Conductivity in few glacier rivers around Mýrdalsjökull glacier continue to be high, suggesting that new hydrothermal vents have opened up under the glacier inside the caldera. This type of warm-up in a volcano is not a good sign and is a clear sign that magma is now shallow in the caldera. For magma to warm ground water up to this levels, it needs to be less than 1 km up in the crust. This is a shallow depth for magma in a volcano.


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8 Replies to “Increase in earthquakes in Katla volcano”

  1. Nice one Jon, though I see there were 5 quakes at Bard in the space of 20 minutes earlier today (one being M3.8 at 100 meters depth).

    1. LOL! What a scumbag! (Crap, now I’ve pissed off a volcano, we’re all doooooomed!!!! 😀

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