Small earthquake swarm in Katla volcano

Today (30-December-2017) a small earthquake swarm took place in Katla volcano. This earthquake activity was a minor one and the largest earthquake only had a magnitude of 1,4 and all other earthquakes where smaller.


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

It is difficult to know if more earthquake activity is going to happen in Katla volcano. Winter months are normally quiet when it comes to earthquake activity in Katla volcano.

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No changes in Öræfajökull volcano earthquake activity

Earthquake activity continues in Öræfajökull volcano as has been doing for past several months. Earthquake activity goes up and down a little, some days there are fewer earthquakes while in others there is more activity.


Latest earthquake activity in Öræfajökull volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Current earthquake activity is consistent with volcano of this type (stratovolcano with rhyolitic type of magma). Earthquake activity happens when the magma or gas connected to it moves inside the volcano. That movement changes during the day and is never constant and impossible to predict.

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Earthquake with magnitude 4,1 in Bárðarbunga volcano

On 23-December-2017 at 23:41 UT a magnitude 4,1 earthquake took place in Bárðarbunga volcano. At the moment no other earthquake activity has followed this earthquake.


Green star shows the location of the magnitude 4,1 earthquake. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

More earthquake activity cannot be ruled out in this area as the location is the normal north-east part of Bárðarbunga volcano caldera that has been seeing a lot of earthquake activity since September-2015.

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Earthquake activity increasing again in Öræfajökull volcano

After quiet two weeks in Öræfajökull volcano earthquake activity has started in increase again. As before the magnitude of earthquakes happening remains small with only few earthquakes reaching magnitudes above 1,5.


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

Largest earthquakes today (23-December-2017) had magnitude of 1,4 and 1,1. All other earthquakes that happened where smaller in magnitude. It is at the moment difficult to know if this current trend continues and earthquake activity continues to increase in Öræfajökull volcano or is going to start dropping off again. Based on earlier pattern in October and November the earthquake activity is going to continue to increase, reach a peak and then start to drop off again. The fact remains is that nothing is certain when it comes to volcanoes and it is close to impossible to predict and know what is going on in Öræfajökull volcano.

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Earthquake swarm in Hengill volcano

At 05:36 UTC a earthquake swarm started in Hengill volcano. Several dozen earthquakes took place and the largest earthquake had the magnitude of 3,4 and the second largest had a magnitude of 3,0. All other earthquakes where smaller in magnitude.


The earthquake swarm in Hengill volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This earthquake swarm appears to have been tectonic in nature and ended at 05:57 UTC. The largest earthquake was felt in ReykjavĂ­k, HveragerĂ°i and Selfoss.

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Article schedule over the Christmas days and New years

Here is the article schedule for Christmas days and the New years.

23rd December. Normal posting of articles if anything happens.
24th December. One automatic article. Otherwise no new articles.
25th December. No new articles.
26th December. No new articles.
27th – 30th December. Normal posting of articles if something happens.
31st December. No New articles.
1st January 2018. One automatic article. No new articles.
2nd January (until next holiday season). Normal posting of articles if something happens.

Minor earthquake swarm on TFZ (Tjörnes Fracture Zone)

During the night of 22-December-2017 a minor earthquake swarm took place south-east of Flatey Island on TFZ (Tjörnes Fracture Zone). This was not a large earthquake swarm.


The earthquake swarm south-east of Flatey Island on TFZ. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Largest earthquake in this swarm had the magnitude of 1,9 and the second largest had the magnitude of 1,5. All other earthquakes where smaller in magnitude.

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Two strong earthquakes in Bárðarbunga volcano

During the night of 20-December-2017 an earthquake swarm started in Bárðarbunga volcano. This earthquake swarm started at 02:17 UTC with a magnitude 1,4 earthquake. The first magnitude 4,1 earthquake took place at 04:57 UTC and the second large earthquake took place at 05:29 UTC and had the magnitude of 4,4. All other earthquakes where smaller in magnitude and around 40 to 48 earthquakes happened.


Earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano. Green stars show the location of the earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This earthquake activity was in the usual north-east part of the caldera of Bárðarbunga volcano. Currently hydrothermal activity is high and remains high in Bárðarbunga volcano. That means there is serious amount of magma inside Bárðarbunga volcano at shallow depth. That has not resulted in any small eruptions at the moment but that might change without warning (watch out for small magnitude focused earthquake activity).

Deep earthquake activity continues south-east of BárĂ°arbunga volcano (red dot on the image). That is magma movement but that activity doesn’t appear to be getting any shallower at the moment. That activity is focused in one location and might be high risk for an eruption in the future.

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Magnitude 3,5 earthquake in Bárðarbunga volcano

During the night of 16-December-2017 at 02:41 UTC an earthquake took place in close to central caldera of Bárðarbunga volcano. Depth of this earthquake was 11 km and no aftershocks followed this earthquake. Both location and lack of earthquakes following this earthquake is unusual.


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

I suspect there is now coming a time period of stronger earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano, close to one that was earlier this autumn. When a earthquake with magnitude 4,7 happened.

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