High conductivity in Jökulsá á Fjöllum glacier river is from Bárðarbunga volcano

It seems that the close to 10 days high conductivity in Jökulsá á Fjöllum glacier river is from Bárðarbunga volcano rather than Kverkfjöll volcano as first thought. New images from the area show this clearly as the river from Kverkfjöll volcano doesn’t show any change and the high conductivity has continued without showing any peak as is normal for glacier floods from the lake in Kverkfjöll volcano.

It remains unclear what is going on. At the moment there aren’t any sign of an eruption having taken place in Bárðarbunga volcano and it remains unclear from where the glacier flood water is coming from since weather has prevented flying over this area in recent days. It is possible that this is just a cauldron the glacier emptying it self, but given how long the high conductivity has been going on it must be a large cauldron. This might also mean bad news for the area where bridges are if a major flood happens without warning due to this change or if an eruption starts suddenly and without much warning.

Icelandic news

Upptök frekar í Bárðarbungu en Gengissigi (Ruv.is, Icelandic)


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11 Replies to “High conductivity in Jökulsá á Fjöllum glacier river is from Bárðarbunga volcano”

  1. Thank you, Jon!

    The early alert site is not to be trusted, but this bugs me a bit. Today, since about 9AM local time, there has been very many small EQs detected. Far more than usual without any ongoing swarm, and still ongoing. The location of the “earthquakes” seem very vague, with no specific center of activity, and I can’t think of what it might be that’s being picked up? Wind/ocean/traffic disturbance doesn’t usually shows up in the early alerts.

    1. “It” clearly calmed down around 12:00. So, approximately three hours of lots of strange entries in the Early Alerts. Could there be a swarm going on somewhere along the Reykjanes or Mid Atlantic ridge, far out at sea? Maybe we’ll never know.

      1. Not noise like this, that is very unusual lately. I’m checking Alerts very regularly, and it’s a long time since there were so much weird ‘tremor’ recorded. Any way, it doesn’t matter. If there was a small swarm of low-magnitude earthquakes on the Reykjanes ridge (as I suspect) along with the M2.5, we will never know, and it effected nobody. 🙂

  2. Noise is still useful to alert us that something is changing, but your right its not 100% useful for much other than to keep us awake wondering!

    1. That’s really interesting. I checked the data and it did go above 1500µ/cm in the days between 12 – 15 November. Nothing interesting has been reported in that time period for Katla volcano.

    2. I contacted the Icelandic Met Office. There are cauldrons emptying from Mýrdalsjökull glacier at the moment. The water level has not increased so this is not a glacier flood but results in higher conductivity than normal.

    1. There are cauldrons in Mýrdalsjökull glacier emptying at the moment. This is not a glacier flood but results in higher conductivity. I contacted the Icelandic Met Office about this. They also say that this has been going on for several days.

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