Magnitude Mw4,3 earthquake in Eldvörp (Reykjanes volcano)

This is a short article about ongoing activity in Reykjanes volcano.

At 17:38 UTC an magnitude Mw4,3 earthquake took place in Eldvörp crater row. This earthquake was felt over a wide area of south Iceland and on Reykjanes peninsula.

A lot of earthquake activity west of Grindavík town in Eldvörp. A lot of green stars in this area along with new red dots showing smaller earthquakes.
Strong earthquake activity west of Grindavík town. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

As it currently is, the earthquake activity in this area is going to continue to increase until an eruption starts. When that might happen is not something I can predict.

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Updated at 20:52. Icelandic Met Office downgraded this earthquake when it was reviewed again. This article has been updated in accordance with the new information.

Strong earthquake swarm in Eldvörpum (Reykjanes volcano)

Today (15-May-2022) a strong earthquake activity started in Eldvörp crater crow west of Grindavík town. Largest earthquake at the writing of this article had a magnitude of Mw4,1. Stronger earthquakes are a possibility. Total of five earthquakes with magnitude stronger than Mw3,0 have taken place since 11:00 UTC this morning. More than 100 earthquakes that are smaller in magnitude have happened since then.

Five green stars on top of each other west of Grindavík town on Reykjanes peninsula. The area is swarmed with smaller earthquakes and older earthquakes from recent days, few green stars out in the ocean from older earthquake swarm
Earthquakes in Reykjanes volcano in Eldvörp crater row. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

I am not seeing any clear signs that this earthquake activity is because of tectonic activity. This earthquake activity is in my personal view because of magma trying to find a path to the surface, something that it seems to struggle with. A process that was also seen just before the eruption in Fagradalsfjall mountain. The difference now is that an eruption in this area might be a magnitude or two larger than an eruption in Fagradalsfjall mountain, until an eruption starts, this is just a speculation. It is impossible to know when an eruption is going to start at this location, or if it is going to start. That is the most likely outcome of all this, but volcanoes remain unpredictable.

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Ongoing earthquake swarm in Reykjanes volcano

There is a an ongoing earthquake swarm in Reykjanes volcano and it has been going on for more than a week now. Location of this swarm has moved a little and the main earthquake activity is now at Reykjanestá area out in the ocean. There have been five earthquakes with magnitude above Mw3,0 today (13-May-2022) and the largest so far had a magnitude of Mw3,5.

Five green stars on top of each other out in the ocean at Reykjanestá. A green star north of it from a unverified earthquake. Swarm of small earthquakes close to Grindavík town
Earthquake activity on Reykjanes ridge and on Reykjanes peninsula. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This earthquake activity suggests two things. Either the magma has not been able to find a path to the surface close to Grindavík town. The second option is that there are two dyke intrusions happening in Reykjanes volcano. This earthquake activity slows down but never fully stops it seems. It is unclear why that happens. I am expecting earthquake activity to get stronger until an eruption starts somewhere in Reykjanes volcano.

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Earthquake activity in new location in Reykjanes volcano

Today (10-May-2022) during the night an earthquake swarm started in a new location in the volcano Reykjanes. This location is about 11 km south of Keflavík International Airport, it is also close to a village named Hafnir. Largest earthquakes in this swarm had a magnitude of Mw3,0 and Mw3,2. The second earthquake was felt in the area. A lot of smaller earthquakes also took place at this location.

Two green stars on top of each other on the most west Reykjanes peninsula in Reykjanes volcano
Green stars in Reykjanes volcano where the activity took place. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This earthquake activity suggests that a new magma injection is taking place in this location. The chance of an eruption is in my view high for this location, when it might happen is impossible to know. There is a old lava field in this area and some say it might be from last ice age. I am not sure on the exact age of this lava field, the crater that created this old lava field has eroded away by the ocean centuries ago.

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Ongoing earthquake swarm in Kleifarvatn lake (Trölladyngja-Krýsuvík volcano)

The earthquake swarm in Trölladyngju-Krýsuvík volcano continues. The earthquake activity increased again this morning (7-May-2022). This earthquake activity suggests that magma is on the move in this area of Kleifarvatn lake.

Largest earthquakes in this swarm today (7-May-2022) had a magnitude of Mw3,3 and Mw3,5. Both earthquakes where clearly felt in Reykjavík area.

Two green stars in Kleifarvatn lake on top of each other. Dense swarm of red dots at the same location.
Earthquake activity in Krýsuvík volcano in Kleifarvatn lake. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This earthquake activity continues with short breaks. I am not clear on why that is happening. One possible reason for this is that there is a drop in the pressure of the magma at this location or that the magma is trying to find easier path to the surface. This pattern of activity might make it longer until an eruption happens in Kleifarvatn lake.

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Earthquake swarm in Kleifarvatn lake in Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcano

Yesterday (04-May-2022) an earthquake swarm started in Kleifarvatn lake that is in Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcano. Largest earthquake had a magnitude of Mw3,4 but earthquakes down to magnitude Mw2,9 where felt in Reykjavík.

Green star in Kleifarvatn lake on Reykjanes pensinsula. This is in Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcano
Earthquake activity in Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

It is difficult to be exactly sure what is going on. However, most signs suggest that this earthquake swarm that is ongoing is because if magma movement or magma trying to push upwards in the crust at this location. Earthquake activity is showing a small amount of fluctuation and I don’t know why that is happening. Eruption in this area is likely, it is however impossible to know when that might happen.

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Moving to Denmark

I am currently moving back to Denmark. Until middle of June or start of July updates might be slower because of limited internet access.

Earthquake swarm in Reykjanes volcano

Earthquake swarm in the Reykjanes volcano (Global Volcanism Program website remains down) is ongoing with little breaks. Largest earthquake in the last 48 hours had a magnitude of Mw3,1. I don’t know if it was felt. This earthquake activity shows that magma continues to inflate this part of the Reykjanes volcano.

Green star and a red dot on the south-westen part of Reykjanes peninsula in the Reykjanes volcano showing where the activity is
Earthquake activity in the Reykjanes volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This earthquake activity is part of a higher than normal earthquake activity in this area. It has been ongoing since 2019, with the most quiet period during the six month long eruption in Fagradalsfjall mountain. I don’t know when the crust is going to break on that magma that is in this area. It might not happen with a large earthquake swarm or activity. A earthquake small as Mw2,5 might start an eruption in this area.

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Moving to Denmark

I am moving to Denmark in May. That means that for some time there is going to be a time where I am not going to be able to post a lot of updates even if something happens. This also means that my earthquake monitoring at Hvammstangi is going to shut down. Because of how the internet is today. I am unable to transmit data from a remote computer to a main computer over the internet. I don’t know why this is, but I suspect that there is some type of new attack going on, resulting in WinSDR server program crashing on the data transmission at random times. I am going to start recording earthquakes in Denmark after I finish moving. This are however only going to be larger earthquakes down in the Mediterranean area, Greece and that area where larger earthquakes often happen. I also consider this a fine change for me, since I’ve been recording earthquakes in Iceland since 2008 and I’ve got a lot of backlog to work through because of high earthquake activity because of volcano activity in recent years. My earthquake website can be found here.

Strong earthquake swarm in Reykjanes volcano

Yesterday (12-April-2022) at 21:21 UTC an earthquake swarm started with a magnitude Mw3,9 earthquake. There is a chance there have been a swarm of smaller earthquakes in last few weeks in this area. Since there has been almost always on earthquake swarm activity on this part of Reykjanes peninsula in recent months. The largest earthquake was felt over a wide area in south and west Iceland. Over seven earthquakes with magnitude Mw3,0 have taken place, accurate number is difficult to know for sure at the moment.

A lot of red dots showing the massive earthquake activity on Reykjanes peninsula in Reykjanes volcano, some of this earthquake activity extends into the ocean
Strong earthquake activity on Reykjanes peninsula in Reykjanes volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

The activity now is happening in a volcano named Reykjanes. Last eruption might have happened last time in the year 1831 but that is difficult to know for sure. At the writing of this article around 264 to 280 earthquakes have been recorded by Icelandic Met Office. This number changes every few minutes because the earthquake swarm is strong and ongoing currently. Earthquake activity seems to be increasing at the writing of this article. This situation can change quickly. I am seeing clues that this earthquake swarm is because of magma movement. I think it might result in a eruption, but that is impossible to know for sure now.

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Strong earthquake activity in Fagradalsfjall mountain, Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcano

This information is going to get outdated quickly.

There is now a constant earthquake swarm activity in Fagradalsfjall mountain, part of the Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcano system. More than a dozen of earthquakes have been larger than magnitude 4,0 and it doesn’t look like this earthquake activity is doing to stop soon. Largest earthquakes in last few hours had a magnitude of Mw4,8 and Mw4,5. The earthquake north of Grindavík town appears to be a tension breaking earthquakes because of magma inflation in Fagradalsfjall mountain.

A lot of earthquakes on Reykjanes peninsula, more than a dozen green stars, hundres of red dots showing smaller earthquakes
The earthquake activity on Reykjanes peninsula. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.
Heavy earthquake activity shown on Icelandic Met Office earthquake tracker. The density of earthquake activity has the image swamped with activity
Earthquake activity on Reykjanes peninsula in Fagradalsfjall mountain for the last 48 hours. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This earthquake swarm is close to Grindavík town, this is a similar situation that happened earlier in the year 2021. Just before the eruption in Fagradalsfjall mountain. This earthquake activity is going to continue to grow until an eruption starts. This earthquake activity also happens in a wave, resulting in it lower earthquake activity between powerful earthquake activity. I am expecting more strong earthquakes in next few days, unless an eruption starts in Fagradalsfjall mountain or nearby area.

Update on activity in Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcano in Fagradalsfjall mountain, eruption is going to happen soon

Information here are going to get outdated quickly.

The earthquake activity in Fagradalsfjall mountain continued on 22-December and on 23-December-2021. Largest earthquake in last few hours had a magnitude of Mw4,9 and was felt over a wide area. No property damage has yet happened because of this earthquake activity so far.
There are now three centres where the earthquake activity is happening. The first one is north of the large crater, the second one is under the main crater and the third one is in Nátthagakrika (about south-west of the large crater). This is the area where people used to walk up the eruption on walking paths A and B.

Dense earthquake activity on Reykjanes pensiula with lot of earthquakes and green stars and red dots
The heavy earthquake activity on Reykjanes peninsula. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.
Plot showing the magnitudes of the earthquake and density. A lot of earthquake that go above 3 line and dense dots with smaller magnitudes
The density of the earthquake activity in the current earthquake swarm. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This earthquake activity is not going to stop until an eruption starts. When that happens is not possible to know. If a new crater opens up that is going to result in ever growing and stronger earthquakes. If the crater that is already in place starts erupting again, that is going to result in some earthquake activity. What is known is that the magma is going to go the path of least resistance, whatever that path might be. At the writing of this article, over 6000 earthquakes have been recorded and around 50 to 100 of them have been larger than magnitude 3,0.