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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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.

More earthquake activity in Reykjanes volcano

Happy Easter. This Easter day (17-April-2022) in Iceland started with an earthquake swarm in Reykjanes volcano (GVP website is down). With the largest earthquake having a magnitude of Mw3,5 so far. Two other earthquakes took place with magnitude of Mw3,2 and Mw3,0. This earthquake swarm is out in the ocean and suggest that magma activity in Reykjanes volcano is increasing from what it was. This earthquake swarm started between 07:00 until 09:00 this morning and seems to be over at the writing of this article.

At the west-south edge of the map there is a lot of orange and red dots along with green stars showing two green stars showing earthquakes larger than Mw3,0
Earthquake activity in the Reykjanes volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

This earthquake swarm was not felt according to the news. This activity is taking place far from land for now. This also increases the chance that an eruption might happen out in the ocean. If that happens it might create new temporary islands in this area, since the ocean is rather shallow in this part of the Reykjanes ridge. Earthquake activity seems to be growing in Reykjanes volcano. If that continues is difficult to know, if it does it increases the chance of an eruption considerably in this area.

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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.

Earthquake swarm north of Grindavík town

Today (8-December-2021) an earthquake swarm started north of Grindavík town. Largest earthquake in this swarm so far had a magnitude of Mw3,1 at 10:44. The news doesn’t say if this earthquake was felt in Grindavík. Earthquake activity has been going up recent weeks since the eruption in Fagradalsfjall ended on 18th September 2021. A swarm of smaller earthquake activity is currently ongoing in this same area at the writing of this article.
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