Update on Grindavík for 4. December 2023

This is a short update and information here can go outdated quickly and without warning.

There has not a lot been happening in last few days. Here is a overview for the last few days.

  • Inflation continues in Svartsengi. Over the 90 day GPS data period. The inflation has reached the zero line. That means the inflation is now at the same level as it was before 25. October 2023. It still has about 100mm to go before it reaches 10. November levels and the sill broke and the magma dyke happened. But it is important that the GPS data from 2020 shows that Svartsengi lowered to 140mm below the January 2020 starting point with the GPS data.
  • The GPS data from January 2020 for Svartsengi show that total inflation in the area is around 230 to 250mm. This information can be viewed here (this is a none https link, so it might require an exception in Google Chrome or just use Mozilla Firefox). There’s a lot of GPS data on this site. Some of it show short term GPS data that are from last 12 hours daily update. Looking for the correct data image might take some time.
  • Inflation might need to reach 10. November levels before anything happens again. The dyke even on 10. November seems to have changed how things happen in Svartsengi so it is impossible to be sure what happens next.
  • While the magma collecting phase is ongoing. Things are going to be quiet with the earthquake activity in this area.
  • The rift valley, best I can see, continues to change and sink and rise. Resulting in ongoing damage to Grindavík town.
  • There’s less news about this at currently. That gives me less information on what is going on.

Next update should be by Friday 8. December, unless something happens.

Update on Grindavík for 30. November 2023

Information here might go outdated quickly and without warning. This article is written on 30. November 2023 at 23:44 UTC.

There isn’t much change happening at the moment. People are now allowed to be in Grindavík between 07:00 to 19:00 I think the time frame is. Earthquake activity is at minimum currently.

Daily update

  • Deepest hole that has been discovered so far is 25,7 meters deep. It is deeper, but at 25 meters the ground water level starts and hides the actual depth of this crack. Rúv news about this found here with pictures and videos in Icelandic.
  • New cracks and the ground continues to sink and move in most of areas of Grindavík. This is resulting in more damage to houses and streets in Grindavík town.
  • The harbour area in Grindavík has lowered 30 cm to 40 cm. That was the news two days ago. I think the harbour area continues to sink. This might be a signs of future problems if the ocean manages to flow into this area.
  • Svartsengi volcano continues to inflate at the rate from 10mm to 40mm a day. The last 24 hour inflation was around 40mm. Earlier the inflation had just been 10mm a day. Suggesting a increased flow of magma into Svartsengi volcano.

Something might start to happen around or after 9. December when the sill in Svartsengi is expected to reach the same pressure it was on 10. November when it broke the first time and emptied and created the dyke that formed under Grindavík and the nearby area.

Update on Grindavík for 28. November 2023

This is a short update for Grindavík and nearby area on 28. November 2023. This article is written at 23:22 UTC. This is a short update and information here can go outdated quickly and without warning.

Last few days have been quiet with little or few earthquakes. There have been earthquake swarm activity at times, suggesting that magma is trying to push at faster rate into the crust at Sundhnúkagígar and Sundhnúkar mountain. I don’t know what the current rate of magma inflow is.

Daily information

  • Magma continues to flow into the dyke. I don’t know how fast that rate is.
  • The dyke is wider than originally thought. This means it cools down more slowly. The dyke is widest around Sundhnúkar and Sundhnúkargígar area.
  • Eruption can start without warning in Sundhnúkar or Sundhnúkargígar and that area.
  • New cracks continue to form in Grindavík, along with sink holes and other issues that is creating.
  • Inflation at Svartsengi is around 10mm/day and up to 40mm/day. Currently, the inflation has slowed down to 10mm/day. This can change without warning.
  • Top of Keilir mountain has moved according to the news. I don’t know how much. But this is a displacement.
  • Rocks with the size of mobile homes have moved and rolled down from mountains.
  • Cracks are forming in a wide area around the dyke according to the news. Making it dangerous to travel in the area around Grindavík because of this new cracks in the ground.

The event in Grindavík and nearby area is not over. It is ongoing, this is just a quiet time period that is currently happening. This quiet time period is going to happen frequently in the Reykjanes volcano system. I don’t know why that is the case, this is the reality of what is going on.

Article updated at 23:56. I forgot to add few things.

Update on Grindavík 24. November 2023

This is a short update on the situation in Grindavík and nearby area on 24. November 2023. This article is written at 18:47 UTC.
Information in this article can go outdated without warning and quickly if something happens.

This activity has slowed down for now. This means I am going to be posting update less here, unless something changes and that can happen without warning.

Daily update

  • There is movements on cracks and new holes and cracks are opening up or appearing as the ground collapses and exposes the fissure.
  • Earthquake activity has reached a low point. This might be just for a short period of time.
  • The inflation in Svartsengi is today around 140 to 160mm from 10. November 2023. The inflation each day is around 30 to 40mm.
  • The area that is inflating in Svartsengi is larger now compared to the area that inflated before 10. November 2023. This has created a uncertainty in the GPS data as I understand the situation. The rift valley is also creating issues in the GPS data as parts of him continue to sink and are going to continue to sink and lower nearby area with it. How much that is difficult to know.
  • The event that happened on 10. November 2023 was the quickest event to happen in recorded history of Icelandic Met Office. According to their report and the news.

It is my view that the current low is just going to last for few more days, at most few weeks because of the ongoing inflation in Svartsengi. It is my view that it is going to take around 30 days until next dyke activity happens, that is around 10. December when that might happen. But the situation is changing quickly and impossible to know for sure how it develops in next few days to weeks.

If anything happens. I’ll post update soon as I can do so.

Update on Grindavík for Wednesday 22. November 2023

This is a short update. Information there might go outdated quickly and without warning. This article is written on Wednesday 22. November 2023 at 21:32 UTC.

There’s little news to report at this moment. Mostly because of bad weather. The progress of the dyke has also stalled from earlier, or this might be it for now. It is difficult be sure currently.

Risk map of Grindavík and the total of 15 km in both directions. The red zone, danger zone b has been withdrawn to north of Grindavík and now its just a small line north of the town and up north along the dyke. The most dangerous risk zone is north of the town.
The risk zone around Grindavík. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

The inflation at Svartsengi (upwards movement) stopped in the last 24 hours. This either means this series of events is stopping for now or something major is about to happen. I am not sure. Risk of this being a error are small, but this might be interference from weather (rain, snow).

The air code for Reykjanes volcano has been downgraded to yellow.

Aviation colour code for volcanoes in Iceland. All are green except Reykjanes volcano that is now yellow.
The aviation colour code of volcanoes in Iceland. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

The situation in Grindavík and in Sundhnúkagígar and the nearby area can still change without much warning. Since the ground is very fractured there and is not going to be much resistance to any magma movements in the near future.

If anything more happens. I’ll update soon as I can.

Update on Grindavík on 19. November 2023

This is a short update on the activity in Grindavík on 19. November 2023. Information here might go out of date without warning. This article is written at 22:28 UTC.

Krýsuvík earthquake

This morning an earthquake with magnitude of Mw3,7 took place in Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcano. This earthquake was felt in Reykjavík area. This earthquake happens because of all the displacement that is now happening next to Grindavík town.

Green star west of Kleifarvatn lake. The dyke appears as a red line with a lot of smaller earthquakes.
The earthquake activity in Krýsuvík-Trölladynga volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Daily update

This is also an update for 18. November 2023. I was trying to get a little time off from writing.

  • Little has changed in last two days. Parts of Grindavík town continue to sink or rise depending on location. Most measured movements is around 25 cm last I did see. If that is correct today I am not sure.
  • Inflation in Svartsengi is around 130mm since Friday 10. November 2023 according to GPS measurements and satellite measurements.
  • Inflow of magma into Svartsengi is estimated to be around 50m3/sec when this article is written according to the news. Inflow of magma into the dyke was 75m3/sec or more few days ago. That has possibly changed to a lower number in last few days.
  • Earthquake activity remains about the same in the dyke. Around 800 to 2000 earthquakes a day along the 15 km long dyke.
Image that shows inflation in Svartsengi area on Reykjanes peninsula. This is a red area that has been lifting up 30mm/day. The image shows also colour blue and green. With blue showing area lowering and green and yellow area uplifting.
Inflation on the Reykjanes peninsula. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

It is impossible to know when this area is going to erupt. It can take up to three to four weeks to happen. It might be a shorter time period, it is impossible to know what happens when it comes to volcanoes and dyke activity.

If anything happens. I’ll post an update quickly as I can.

Update on Grindavík 17. November 2023

This is a short update on the situation in Grindavík on 17. November 2023. Information here can go outdated quickly and without warning.

Daily updates

  • Grindavík town continues to sink as the rift valley continues to move. The speed of sinking has slowed a little according to the news today.
  • Earthquake activity has slowed down in last few hours (this is written around 22:51 UTC). What that means is unclear.
  • Some houses in Grindavík town have been completely destroyed. Iceland has a natural disaster fund for this type of situation and that is going to cover the owners loss according to the news.

General update

It took me a week. But it seems that this dyke intrusion under Grindavík town is because of the magma sill (dyke) under Svartsengi. That area has inflated around 110mm in a week. That is a inflation of 15mm/day based on my best calculations. That is a lot of inflation, since before 10. November the inflow of magma into Svartsengi was at most 8m3/sec according to measurements of Icelandic Met Office.

The sill in Svartsengi created a lateral dyke in Sundhnúkar and nearby areas. When the pressure in the sill is high enough again it is going to push the magma into the dyke at Sundhnúkar again with the same force as it did before. How long that takes I don’t know. Last time this was from 25. October to 10. November. That’s seventeen days, but there was a lot of deeper sills in Svartsengi and its impossible to know much, if anything flowed form them into the dyke. This is my personal view, it might be wrong. But this is what I am reading from the data.

Risk of the eruption remains high because there’s a ongoing inflation at Svartsengi. When a eruption starts is impossible to know.

If anything happens. I’ll post update soon as I can.

Update on Grindavík on 16. November 2023

This is a short update on what is happening in Grindavík on 16. November 2023. Information here can go outdated quickly and without warning.

The situation is mostly the same as yesterday (15. November 2023), but few things have happened and that is enough for me to publish this article.

  • Sulfur dioxide has been detected in a drilling hole in Svartsengi. This drilling hole is such that it end point is close to Hagafell mountain  east to Svartsengi power plant. I think this might be a cold water hole. It has a depth of 2,5 km. This means that magma is at or close to that depth. Ground water in this area doesn’t go deeper than 1,9 to 3 km I think (I am not sure on how the fresh water ground level works in this area).
  • Eruption is expected from hours to day based on most recent measurements from Icelandic Met Office.
  • Grindavík town continues to sink according to news today (16. November 2023). Difference between days can be as much as 25 cm.
  • Mbl.is (Morgunblaðið) has a video of the damage done by this sinking on their website here. Its in Icelandic.

The situation for now is quiet, but that might only last for few hours to days longer before an eruption starts. Since earthquake activity strongly suggests that magma is looking for a way to the surface. While some magma is at shallow depth of 400 to 500 meters. There’s not enough of it to start an eruption. That can change without any warning at any time in this situation.

I’ll write updates if anything more happens here as quickly as I can.

Update on Grindavík 15. November 2023

This is a short update on what is happening in Grindavík on 15. November 2023. Information here might go outdated quickly.

In general, not much has changed since yesterday (14. November 2023).

  • There’s no change in earthquake activity. Strong wind in the Reykjanes peninsula might be masking some of the smaller earthquakes.
  • Part of the harbour area has started to sink according to news. I am not sure how much, but I think it might be considerable sink.
  • Speed of the sink in some areas of areas inside Grindavík has increased from 7 cm for each 24 hours to 12 cm for each 24 hours since yesterday. Some areas inside Grindavík have lowered as much as 2 meters or more.
  • Inflow of magma into the dyke continues to be at 75 m3/second according to news reports today. This is a lot of magma inflow into the dyke. The eruption in Holuhraun in 2014 and 2015 had an flow of 90 m3/sec when it was the most.
  • It is reported on mbl.is that it is now considered that magma might be flowing directly from the main magma chamber at 20 km to 40 km depth under this location in Reykjanes peninsula. That news is in Icelandic here.
  • Parts of Grindavík town has lost power, hot and cold water because of sinking of the ground and movements. Emergency repair is going to be attempted tomorrow if it is safe.
  • Eruption might happen at Sundhnúkar and Hagafell, where the highest flow of magma is happening according to Icelandic Met Office and the news.
  • Eruption at many craters at the same time is what is going happen here. Based on what I am seeing. That means more lava covering larger area quicker than the small eruptions in Geldingadalir, Meradalir and at Litli-Hrútur. Where it was just one crater and a small eruption.
  • Something is holding back the magma from reaching the surface. What that is unclear. But magma is at shallow 500 meters or less according to measurements done by Icelandic Met Office. This shallow depth means that magma can start erupting without much warning or notice in the dyke.

There is a chance that parts of Grindavík town might sink under the ocean because of the ground sinking. When eruption starts, what goes under lava depends on where the eruption is going to start and where the lava is going to flow. Both are random events that is impossible to know anything about.

If anything happens. I’ll post update soon as I can. If anything happens tomorrow I’ll write about it. Otherwise I plan on publishing next article on Friday 17. November 2023. Since changes at the moment are not that big changes between days currently.

Update on Grindavík on 14. November 2023

This is a short update on the situation in Grindavík and nearby area. Information here can go outdated quickly and without warning.

For the press media. Please contact Icelandic Met Office or Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management for any important information or interviews. I already write everything I know here on this website as needed. Thanks.

  • The magma is at 400 meters depth, where it is at its most shallow.  I am not sure on location, but I think it is just north-east of Grindavík town.
  • There is strong wind on Reykjanes peninsula. That normally hides some of the smaller earthquakes happening. Icelandic Met Office continues to record 700 to 3000 earthquakes each day. Most of them are along the dyke and most of them are in the magnitude range of Mw0,0 to Mw3,1. With the stronger ones happening least often.
  • Inflow of the magma into the dyke is at the writing of this article around 73 m3/s to 75 m3/s. On Friday 10. November that inflow was 1000 m3/s.
  • Sulfur dioxide was detected today north of Grindavík. That suggests that magma might be at shallow depth in the dyke area.
  • News reports today did say that the area in Grindavík and nearby continues to sink around 7 cm over 24 hour time period. This might be uneven process depending on the area.
  • Lakes south of Grindavík have been seen growing, as the area continues to sink and get lower. It is a question of parts of this area is going to get flooded by the ocean soon. This is reported on Facebook by Eldfjalla- og náttúruvárhópur Suðurlands.
  • The GPS station just north of Grindavík has lowered by 1400mm since Friday 10. November 2023. The stations on the east are going up, some much as 1 meter. While the GPS stations on the west side are lowering.
Line of red dots shows all the small earthquakes, along with one green star on it. This show all the 15 km of the dyke.
The dyke as it appears on the earthquake map. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This situation changes quickly and often from hour to hour. I’ll post new updates if something major happens, quickly as I can.

Article updated on 15. November 2023 at 00:21 UTC. – Removed information that might not be correct.