Grímsvöt eruption appears to be over

Given the current tremor plot on Icelandic Met Office and with reports it seems that the eruption in Grímsvötn (Grímsfjall volcano) is about to be over for now. It is impossible to know if the eruption is going to resume soon or not. But at the moment this eruption seems to be over as it looks now. If it remains like that has to be seen however.

This drop in the eruption has been confirmed by Icelandic Met Office tremor plots.

Tremor plots as of 07:00 UTC. This tremor plots are from Icelandic Met Office web site. Copyright of this pictures belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Early news this morning in Iceland reported that steam was only coming from the main crater of Grímsvötn.

Other interesting development is that an earthquakes have started to appear SSE of Grímsfjall volcano (Grímsvötn). It is unclear why earthquake are happening at this location. But dike intrusion at this location is not impossible.

The reason for flight problems in Europe is because of the volcano ash that was ejected into atmosphere in the first days of the eruption. It is going take few days for that volcano ash to disappear from the air. Until that happens, it is going to create problems for air traffic.

Update 1: Even if the eruption appears to be over the tremor is still high. I do not know why that is. It is a question why that is or if this is just break in the eruption or not. Only time is going to tell what happens next.

Update 2: There was an news report this morning that before 02:00 UTC there was an spike in activity in Grímsvötn that did shoot the ash cloud up to 8 km. But that spike did only last for few moments before it was over. Rúv has released video here (Windows Media Player) of the eruption site.

Updated at 07:37 UTC.
Updated at 07:50 UTC.
Updated at 08:33 UTC. Blog post title updated.
Updated at 11:42 UTC.
Updated at 12:23 UTC.

Less powerful eruption in Grímsvötn / Grímsfjall volcano

It has been reported in the news that the eruption in Grímsfjall volcano (also known as Grímsvötn) is getting less powerful as the time passes. This is perfectly normal for an eruption in Grímsfjall volcano.

This can also be seen on tremor plots around Grímsfjall volcano. They clearly show the eruption getting less powerful over time. It has also been reported in the news that the material that is being erupted is now estimated to be 100 tons/second at the moment. But just yesterday it was 1000 tons/second and up to 2000 tons/second. The eruption is currently stable, even if it smaller then it was in the first few days. It is also not certain if this eruption is going to turn into lava eruption. As there seems to be enough water to continue ash phase of the eruption for the next few days.

Grímsfjall SIL station. It clearly shows the eruption getting less powerful over time.

Kálfafell SIL station. It shows the same pattern as Grímsfjall SIL station. Copyright of both pictures belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

In the news it has also been suggested that there might be less or no influx of new magma from great depth. But I do not know for sure if that is just speculation or not.

The ash plume has only got up to 3 to 5 km according to news reports. This means that has dropped a good distance in the last 24 hours. But yesterday it did reach up to 5 to 9 km. So ash is not spreading far away as it did earlier in this eruption. What is creating flight disruption in Europe and over Iceland is the volcano ash that was ejected in the first few days of the eruption. It has also been an big problem in Iceland is the volcano ash that is getting air blown on the ground. The ground is dry so the volcano ash moves easily because of that. Update 1: It has also been reported that the ash that did was ejected on the first day of Grímsvötn eruption was like all the ash ejected in the Eyjafjallajökull volcano eruption in the year 2010. They also say that this eruption was about the size of normal Katla eruption in there own estimate. News about this can be found here (Icelandic, picture)

Scientists did go today up to Vatnajökull glacier in an attempt to get close the eruption site. Flight over the Grísmfjall volcano is also taking place in an attempt to see the eruption site and take measurements of the eruption.

Update 2: There has been an minor spike in the tremor plot in the last hour or so. I do not know why that is. But this suggest that the eruption is growing in power again.

Icelandic News about it. Use Google Translate if you want some funny reporting.

Dregur úr gosvirkni (Rú, Icelandic)
Dregið hefur úr eldsgosinu – umtalsvert minni gosefnaframleiðsla (Ví, Icelandic)
Dregur úr gjóskuframleiðslu (, Icelandic)

Please note that information here might get outdated really fast and with no warning at all!

Post updated at 17:57 UTC.

General overview of Grímsvötn eruption on 23. May 2011 at 20:33 UTC

This is a general overview of Grímsvötn eruption on 23. May 2011 at 20:33 UTC.

Ash cloud: The ash cloud is still going strong. It is however a bit lower then in first few days. Measurements of the ash plume now says that it is between 5 to 9 km. Because of that it does not appear on the radar at IMO. The ash cloud has now been detected all over Iceland, except for the most western part of Iceland (Westfjod). In the areas closest to the main ash cloud the visibility is from 1 meter and up to 500 meters when it is at it’s best. Ash fall is expected to last for the next few days, or until the crater does not get any water into it to make the ash. The ash cloud is expected to reach Scotland tonight (Rúv, Icelandic). BBC News about cancelled flights due the ash cloud. Farmers live stock has started to die due to the ash cloud. It is unknown how the wild life is doing while the ash cloud covers part of south Iceland. Current output of the Grímsfjall volcano is about 1000 to 2000 tons of ash pr second. It was around 10,000 tons of ash pr second during the first days of the eruption.

Rúv News, Öskufall næstu daga (Icelandic, Rú

Eruption: Even if the ash cloud is lower now. It appears that the eruption is still going strong. In the evening news at Rúv it was reported that there was a chance the magma that powers this eruption might be from a great depth (more then 20 km). Tremor graphs that are online show and suggest that the eruption is still at full power. The reason why they are at lower noise level is most likely due to fewer explosion in the eruption, as less water is in the crater. When water no longer goes into the crater it turns into lava eruption. There is also an speculation that new fissures might open up in this eruption where there is more glacier cover (evening news on Rúv). But that would mean flash glacier flood and new ash cloud when the eruption would break the glacier covering it. But so far this has not happened and is nothing but a speculation. It would mean earthquake activity when the magma would break the crust, as happened when the eruption did start on 21. May 2011.

GPS data: According to report from IMO and University of Iceland the deflation now has been 50 cm to northwest and has subsided 25 cm. According to the report this about 60% larger then after the eruptions in the year 1998 and in the year 2004.

Web cameras: Grímsvötn Míla web cam is now up and running. It should be possible to see the eruption when an ash cloud is not in the way. But so far that has been the case.

Please note that information here might get outdated really fast and with no warning at all!

Updated at 20:42 UTC.

Grímsfjall/Grímsvötn volcano eruption update at 21:54 UTC

This is a minor update to the Grímsfjall volcano / Grímsvötn eruption.

Process of the eruption: The harmonic tremor on the SIL stations around Grímsvötn is increasing again after it did drop a little bit down earlier today. Following this the ash plume has again appeared on radar images from Icelandic Met Office. Currently however the ash plume is just around 10 km high. According to the news, the eruption is made out of basalt. But that is a common eruption type for Grímsvötn. The ash cloud is formed when hot magma gets into contact with ice and water and explodes on contact. This eruption is now expected to many times larger then the eruption in Eyjafjallajökull volcano last year.

Ash cloud: The ash cloud does now covers most of Iceland, except the northern part of west Iceland (for the moment) and east Iceland (for the moment) but that is expected to change in the next 24 to 48 hours. Ash has been reported in most town in Iceland. That includes Reykjavík, Akureyri, Selfoss (heavy ash cloud) and more. According to web cameras there is heavy ash fall close to Hekla volcano from Grímsfjall volcano (web camera pointed towards Hekla is here, Eyjafjallajökull is here). Due the ash cloud all flight to and from Iceland has been grounded until this ash clouds goes away.

Earthquakes: Few earthquakes are recorded. But only two earthquakes have been recorded around Grímsfjall volcano and close to in the past few hours. But that does not mean that they are not happening. But they might simply be lost in the harmonic tremors from the eruption.

Other: Nothing at the moment.

Please note that information here might get outdated really fast and with no warning at all!

Grímsfjall/Grímsvötn volcano eruption update at 16:02 UTC

Here is the second update today of the Grímsfjall volcano. But it is also known as Grímsvötn.

Process of the eruption: The eruption has not changed a lot since this morning. But its power has dropped a little bit since it started yesterday. But there also seems to be the case that this eruption increases on regular basis. But it is impossible to know for how long that eruption pattern is going to continue in Grímsfjall volcano. Early estimates of this eruption (reported by the news in Iceland) is that this eruption is about 10 times bigger then the eruption in Eyjafjallajökull volcano. But that is a early estimate and is a subject to a change. But in general there is nothing to suggest that this eruption is slowing down, even if it does not have the same power as it did in the first few hours of eruption.

Ash cloud: The ash cloud has dropped a little from it’s high of 20 km. Current measurements place the hight of the ash cloud around 15 to 18 km high up. Reports say that the lowest point was around 10 km, before the ash cloud did get higher again. Update 1: There have been recorded over 15,000 lightnings in this eruption alone. But they where recording 2198 lightning in 1 hour since the eruption started. News about it can be found here (Icelandic, picture). Update 2: The ash cloud is now from 10 to 20 km high. But it depends on the power of the eruption. But that seems to change over time and does not remain a constant.

Earthquakes: So far, most of earthquake activity in Grímsfjall volcano has stopped. But that suggest that the magma now has a clear path to the surface. There has been some earthquake activity in Hamarinn volcano. But it is unclear if that is connected to the eruption in Grímsfjall volcano.

Other: It is dangerous to go into the ash cloud. The government has closed off part of road one due the ash cloud. People how find them self in the ash cloud should find a shelter soon as possible, or of they are inside a house they should remain there. Reports are of communication problems where the ash clouds goes over due to static charge in it. This interferes with GSM, 3G phones, radios and tv receptions. In worst cases people can not expect a reception of any radio signal where the ash cloud is most dense.

Sorry for lack of links. I do not have the time to post them into this blog post.

Please note that information here might get outdated really fast and with no warning at all!

Updated at 16:17 UTC.
Updated at 16:26 UTC

Grímsvötn/Grímsfjall volcano eruption update at 08:52 UTC

This is a short update on Grímsfjall volcano/ Grímsvötn eruption. This is short update because a lot of details in this eruption are still unclear at this moment.

Process of the eruption: The eruption in Grímsvötn is still growing strong. Icelandic Met Office SIL sensors show a uneven process in the eruption. But they also show that the eruption has dropped a little bit in power since it originally started in yesterday. That is normal for a eruption in Grímsfjall volcano. It starts strong and then slowly drops in power over time. But what is unusual for this eruption is the uneven process that is taking place (seen with SIL data) in the eruption. What that means is unclear. It is more unclear what it means to the eruption. While it is unclear at the moment. It appears that the eruption is taking place a little south of the eruption in the year 2004. But that is unconfirmed, as ash cloud to the ground blocks the view the eruption site.

Ash cloud: The ash plume is reported to have reached 20 km high yesterday. From as I can gather that has not changed. This ash plume appears be made from two to three ash cloud columns. With the strongest one getting the highest. A lot of lightning is taking place in the ash cloud. Due to the ash cloud, all flight from and to Iceland has been cancelled until further notice (don’t ask question about that here, ask your airliner for information about this closure). The ash did start to fall in populated areas few hours after the eruption did start in Grímsvötn. The ash is described as fine, but more crude (bigger particles) then the ash from Eyjafjallajökull volcano eruption in the year 2010. The ash cloud is moving west in higher layers of the atmosphere over Iceland. While it moving south in the lower layers of the atmosphere as the wind is from north in Iceland at the moment.

Earthquakes: After the magma has found it’s way to the surface. All earthquake activity did stop in Grímsfjall volcano. This is normal. But what is unusual is that there have been few earthquake swarm after that in Grímsfjall volcano. I do not know what it means or why this is happening. But this is interesting development.

Other: The earliest estimation on the size of the Grímsfjall volcano eruption 2011 is that this looks like it is a bigger eruption then in Eyjafjallajökull volcano eruption in the year 2010. But that is closer to speculation based on visual observation of the eruption. But it is clear that this eruption is bigger then the year 2004 eruption in Grímsfjall volcano.

A new video has been relased of the eruption. It is from yesterday when the eruption was starting.

Update 1: They now say that this is the largest eruption in Grímsvötn / Grímsfjall volcano in the last 100 years. Rúv news about this, Stærsta gos í Grímsvötnum í 100 ár (Icelandic).

Please note that information here might get outdated really fast and with no warning at all!

Update at 09:24 UTC.

Less risk of large airspace disruption in a Katla volcano eruption

In the evening news in Rúv they tell about research (based on models) that suggest that it is going to be less chance of large airspace disruption like took place in Eyjafjallajökull volcano eruption in the year 2010. Reason for that is the fact that volcano ash from Katla volcano is normally not as small (less then 1 micron in size) as the volcano ash from Eyjafjallajökull volcano. But this small size of the early ash cloud allowed it too travel longer and hang up longer in the air then from more common ash clouds.

The reason for this is because of the fact that lava from Katla volcano are mostly basaltic and would create Hawaiian eruption if no glacier was on top of Katla volcano. Ash cloud from Surtseyan eruption is more heavy, as the volcano ash particles are larger and more heavy.

This might be a good news for the air travel industry in Europe when Katla volcano starts erupting. But this might create issues for the area closest to Iceland anyway. Depending on wind direction.

The Rúv news about this. Use Google translate at own risk.

Kötlugos hefði ekki sömu áhrif (Rú

Extensive research into Eyjafjallajökull volcano ash cloud

According to news on Rúv. The British government is starting a major research into the ash cloud from Eyjafjallajökull volcano. The size of this research is big and the cost is around 3 million pound. The aim of this research is into how ash cloud behaves, how it spreads and to compare models to reality. This research might also aim to improve satellite detection of ash clouds. But it proved to be not quite reliable in the Eyjafjallajökull volcano eruption that took place in the year 2010.

Icelandic news about this. I have not found any english news about this yet. Use Google translate like when you play the lottery. Hope for the best.

Viðamikil gosrannsókn (Rúv, Icelandic)

News in english about this. Thanks to Erik Klemetti how did point this out.

£530,000 to study Icelandic volcano (Press Release)
New Class of Ceramic Coatings Could Protect Jet Engines from Volcano Ash (Related press relase)

Post updated at 19:49 UTC on 22 April 2011.

Risk of volcano ash flood in Eyjafjallajökull volcano

Almannavarnir in Iceland did send out this warning earlier tonight. There is a heavy rain going over south of Iceland. This means that there is a risk of ash floods from south side of Eyjafjallajökull volcano. As that area is still covered in heavy ash after the last year eruption. People traveling in this area is advised to monitor the news or the website and for more information. The area in the most risk of flooding is Þórsmörk and other rivers that come from Eyjafjallajökull volcano. The most heavy rain is forecast to start from 22:00 UTC and last until 12:00 UTC on 22 April 2011. But this forecast can change without any warning at all. So it is important to monitor the weather forecast for changes.

News about this in Icelandic. Use Google translate if you want to solve a puzzle.

Varað við vatnavöxtum undir Eyjafjallajökli (Icelandic,
Varað við vatnavöxtum á Suðurlandi (Icelandic, Rúv)
Vara við úrkomu og vatnavöxtum (Icelandic,

Eyjafjallajökull volcano ash – Pictures

As it is quiet time in Iceland and I currently don’t have a lot to write about volcano activity and earthquake wise. So while that is I am going to put up two pictures that I got of the Eyjafjallajökull volcano ash from last years eruption.

Eyjafjallajökull volcano ash. I release this picture under Creative Commons Licence (see page for more details).

Eyjafjallajökull volcano ash. I release this picture under Creative Commons Licence (see page for more details).

To get full size, click on the picture.

The pictures where taken by Birgit in Austria. With many thanks to here for this great pictures of the volcano ash from Eyjafjallajökull.