Earthquake in Bárðarbunga volcano (best estimate)

Yesterday (25.02.2017) an earthquake happened in Bárðarbunga volcano. For some unknown reason, Icelandic Met Office has not located this earthquake or given it exact magnitude. I estimate based on what I see on my geophones that the magnitude is in the range of 3,2 – 3,8. Location is somewhere in Bárðarbunga volcano, since I just two geophones running in Iceland at the moment, I cannot give exact location. In order to get exact location I need more than three geophones.

The earthquake as it appeared on my geophone in Böðvarshólar. This image is under Creative Commons Licence, please see CC Licence for more details.

The earthquake as it appeared on my geophone in Heklubyggð. This image is under Creative Commons Licence, please see CC Licence for more details.

I’ll update this article once I get the exact location and magnitude from Icelandic Met Office website.


The weekly earthquake list has this earthquake at magnitude 2,58Mw and ML3,03.

227 20170225 143125.453 64.64607 -17.35535 0.065 2.58 3.03

Article updated at 20:56 UTC on 27.02.2017.

Ongoing earthquake activity in Katla volcano

For the past few days there has been a earthquake activity in Katla volcano. This is in two forms, as earthquake swarm that are taking place and earthquakes that spread around the caldera and the volcano.

The earthquake activity in Katla volcano over the past 48 hours. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

All clues suggest that an eruption is going to happen soon in Katla volcano, as it currently stands. The problem is that Katla volcano might cool down and not erupt at all, what makes this period different is the fact this earthquake activity has been ongoing since end of August-2016. At the moment the earthquake activity is just a minor activity, with most earthquakes have less magnitude of 3,0. There are no signs that suggest that this activity is slowing or stopping.

Technical problems (Iceland geology)

Yesterday I was having technical problems with Iceland geology. Turns out the source of this issue is that my server is getting too small. I started using the current dedicated server in 2015 and then it was enough (page view count for 1 day ~1100, today that is ~2100 for 1 day). Today, Iceland Geology has traffic that is too much for my current server. This means that I need to do an upgrade when I can afford it. That won’t be this month as it currently stands, moving to a new server costs $219/month, at the moment I’m paying $140/month for dedicated hosting. The new server is going to be 3,60Ghz with 16GB ram. Current server has 4GB ram and just 1,66Ghz CPU. Making this upgrade a urgent one due to the increase in traffic that Iceland geology is currently seeing.

At the moment I’m hoping that I’ll be able to move to a new server in May or June at the latest. I just hope that Katla doesn’t erupt before that, since it would result in a server issues due to lack of capability to handle all the traffic.

Earthquake swarm not far from Skjaldbreið (Presthnjúkur area)

Yesterday (22.02.2017) there was an earthquake swarm in the Presthnjúkur area, in a area not far from Skjaldbreið volcano.

Earthquake activity yesterday close to Skjaldbreið. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This was a minor earthquake swarm, with the largest earthquake only having a magnitude of 2,2. Depth was from 18,3 km and up to 1,1 km. This earthquake swarm appears to be over.

Article updated at 12:08 UTC on 24.02.2017. Title error fixed.

Continued and strong earthquake activity north of Kolbeinsey Island

For the past few weeks something has been going on in the deep ocean far north of Kolbeinsey Island. The area north of Kolbeinsey Island has been having strong earthquake swarms for several weeks now, what is creating them is less clear.

The earthquake activity north of Kolbeinsey Island (blue dots). Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

All magnitudes are under-estimated at this location. I managed to record the last earthquake swarm (largest earthquakes) and it was clear by this activity that something was going on. Five earthquakes that where at least magnitude 3,2 (estimate) took place in the space of 4 – 8 minutes. This where only the earthquakes that I was able to record, distance from my geophone to this area is ~230 km at shortest distance. Making it difficult for me to record earthquakes on my simple geophone. Icelandic Met Office SIL network is not having much better luck recording earthquakes at this location, due to distance the SIL network underestimates the magnitude and location of the earthquakes has higher than normal error margins (up to several dozen of km at most).

There is a possibility that an eruption is taking place at this location now. There was a possible eruption or dyke injection at this location in October of the year 1999, the Global Volcanism Program report on that activity can be found here.

Earthquake activity increasing in Katla volcano again

For the last 24 hours (15 and 16.02.2017) earthquake activity has been increasing in Katla volcano. If it follows earlier pattern, a swarm of earthquakes with magnitude 3,0 or stronger might happen in Katla volcano in next few days or next week at the latests. Please note that there is no good way to say when this might happen and time estimates are just guesses (based on current best data).

Earthquake activity in Katla volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Current earthquake activity was not strong, the largest earthquake that happened had a magnitude of 2,0. All other earthquakes had smaller magnitude (at the moment). Earlier pattern have been that small earthquake swarm starts, a break happens for several hours for up to several days and then a swarm of activity happens with one or more earthquake with magnitude above 3,0. I’m expecting this pattern to repeat it self now, but what actually happens remains to be seen.

Earthquake swarm on the Reykjanes Ridge

Yesterday (12.02.2017) and today (13.02.2017) there has been a earthquake swarm on the Reykjanes ridge. For this area of the Reykjanes ridge, this earthquake swarm is normal. It doesn’t appear that it was due to magma movement and only tectonic in nature. The area in question is a fault valley according to ship survives (I think).

The earthquake swarm on the Reykjanes ridge. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Largest earthquakes in this swarm had the magnitude of 3,1 and 3,2. Depth in this earthquakes swarm was from 17 km and up to 2,4 km (there is some error margin). It appears that this earthquake swarm is over for now. It might restart again with double or triple amount of earthquakes happening, there is also a equal good chance of that not happening. All that can be done is to wait and see.

Deep earthquake activity in Öræfajökull volcano

I haven’t written many articles about Öræfajökull volcano, since most of the time nothing happens in it. Öræfajökull volcano is located outside the main activity area in Iceland, like Esjufjöll and Snæfell (east Iceland). This three volcanoes form a volcano “arch” in south to east Iceland. Research suggests that old continental crust is possibly melting under Öræfajökull volcano and maybe Esjufjöll volcano (unclear). Research into that can be found here. This research shows a possible volcano directly east of Esjufjöll, I don’t have it on my maps so I don’t have a name for it (it might be unconfirmed volcano in that area, some maps show it, other don’t. I don’t know why).

Earthquake activity in Öræfajökull volcano. Öræfajökull volcano is in the right-south corner. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

The magnitude of the earthquakes in question is only 1,1 and up to 1,8. What makes them interesting and might be a signal about something is about to happen in Öræfajökull volcano is the depth of earthquakes in question. The earthquake (magnitude 1,1) with the most depth has the depth of 21,2 km. The rest of the earthquakes has the depth of 19,0 to 20,7 km. View on the tremor plot suggest that this earthquake activity is magma related, rather than being driven by tectonic forces.

This activity started in the year 2011 with few earthquakes, no earthquakes happened in 2012 according to my data. Since then few earthquakes have been happening each year. How long the process is from just minor earthquake activity until an eruption starts in Öræfajökull volcano is something I don’t know and far as I know historical documents about the known eruptions are limited at best. Last known eruptions took place in the years 1362 June 5th until 1362 October 15 +-45 days, the other known eruption was in the year 1727 on August 3 and it lasted until May 1st 1728 +-30 days.

Please remember to support my work

February 2017 is going to be a difficult month in terms of money. Due to two bills that I got and that was out of my control why this did happen. This is also happening because I’m lowering my overdraft at the bank fast for few months, until I slow down a bit (when I’m back to my planned levels). The good news is that I have finished paying up tax debt from 2014 with the Danish tax, its finished and is never coming back.

The bills I still haven’t paid are this ones.

  • The internet bill, it’s in automatic payment and is paid on Monday 6th February (I can manually pay the bill until 28th of February). That bill is 2.492,83 DKK (335,13€).  Due to some bill problem (for me) my internet company in Denmark didn’t send me a bill for several months and are now charging for 7 month period. I did complain about this, since I’m not happy about this as it creates problem for me. It was also at the worst time, during the period when I was paying down my debt that higher rate than normal.
  • The electricity bill is 2011,95 DKK (270,48€). The good news here is that I can afford this due to Amazon U.S payments that I’ll get in few days I think. But once I’m finished paying this I’ll be out of money to buy food for the rest of the month. I have until 15th of February to pay the electricity bill. The electricity bill this month is this high since they are adding up debt that was collected during last year (due to billing problems at the electricity company). I already had paid something into it (thankfully), but I still had unpaid around 1.500 DKK (201,68€). This happens due to high electricity usage that I have (running all those computers costs a bit of money in terms of electricity).

I find this type of problem stressful and I’m not happy about it, since it has the negative side effect of ruining my carefully planned plans. If anyone can help me with this month money problems a donation is welcomed. Since without it I’m going to be without internet at worst. One thing is for sure, I might run into problem buying food this month. I’m not sure how to deal with that, thankfully I have something in my freezer to use.

Thanks for the support. 🙂

Update on donations

I wanted to post this little update on donations (for a change). Current donations of 410€ allow me to pay all the internet bill without any problems. The rest is almost enough to pay the electricity bill in full (I don’t have around 700 DKK [~94€] so that I can pay the electricity bill). I don’t have the full amount to pay it at the moment, but once the Amazon U.S checks clear the bank I’m going to be able to pay it and have some left to buy food this month. The reason why I don’t have the full amount at the moment is that I had to buy food for next week at least, I buy based on current offers in the store and I buy enough so that I can put in my freezer.

Update on donations (08.02.2017)

Thanks to donations I should be able to pay the electric bill in full on Friday and have little thing left to use until the Amazon U.S checks are paid out by my bank in Iceland. I’m happy that this issue got resolved with help from people.

Thanks for all that support.

Server maintenance

The server needs to be upgraded due to it running a updated versions of php, mysql and other software. This update update is going to happen tonight (I hope) after 23:00 UTC (on 03.02.2017 until 04.02.2017) at the earliest and might run as long to 09:00 UTC. During that time access to this website might be limited or none at all.

Update on server maintenance

The server software is going to be updated from 23:00 UTC today (04.02.2017). It is expected that the update is going to take 2 hours at least if no other issues happens.

Article updated at 17:01 CET/16:01 UTC.
Article updated at 14:38 CET/13:38 UTC on 03.02.2017.
Article updated at 10:02 CET/09:02 UTC on 04.02.2017.
Article updated at 17:19 CET/16:19 UTC on 04.02.2017.
Article updated at 12:00 CET/11:00 UTC on 08.02.2017.