Donation note: I want to thank people for the donations I have received over the year. But donations allow me to continue my work here and keep writing about volcano and earthquake activity in Iceland. If not for donations I would not be able to do anything. That includes writing on this website. So I am always thankful for donations. Since they allow me to continue my work here. Donations also allow me to maintain my geophone network in Iceland is expensive and last hardware updates was exactly that. So if you can donate, it is most welcomed. Information on how to donate can be found here. Thanks for the support.
During the night a magnitude 4,1 earthquake was recorded around 240 km north of Kolbeinsey island. This is automatic location and magnitude. So it is subject to change.
Earthquake activity north of Kolbeinsey island (green star). Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
I don’t know yet if I detected it on my Böðvarshólars geophone (website here). Since I have not had the change to review the data from that geophone yet. I am not sure what is taking place at that location. This might be earthquake swarm activity before and eruption starts there, but due to remote location and ocean depth it is currently impossible to know for sure at this point.
It is quiet in Iceland at the moment. There are so few earthquakes in fact that yesterday (or two days ago) no earthquake was recorded in Icelandic Meteorological Office SIL system for good 10 hours (or something like it) according to geologist that I spoke with yesterday. I am not sure why this happens in Iceland, but it does and not just Iceland. This type of quiet period happens all over the Atlantic rift zone. The weather in Iceland has also not been good, a lot of storms this year and that has been dropping chances of proper detection of earthquakes. This mostly applies to small earthquakes. I don’t know for how long this quiet period is going to last. As for the year 2013, it is one of the most quiet years that I can remember. I have been watching activity in Iceland for since the year 1994, or when I was 14 years old.
Thanks to donations I was able to buy backup power for Böðvarshólar geophone station (website here). This backup power is not meant to keep the station alive for hours, but just for 8 to 10 minutes if the power goes out. It is also meant to keep the electricity the station gets stable and without any problems. Electricity problems can and often do shorten the hardware lifespan, this is I hope going to prevent such issues and problems.
Blog post updated at 19:50 UTC.
I need donations in December as any other month. I am not going into details since I have explained them before and they can all be found here already. I do know one thing, mentally it is really wearing me out to always have money problems over the past few months and this problem is going to continue for the next year as thing currently stand. I hope that this problem is going to be resolved one way or an other, but that is not looking good as is. In December I am having the continued money issue as before and it does not look good currently money wise. As things stand now I won’t be able to afford anything in December and that is a lot worse status now then I was having last year. Since I need to cover many types of cost as anyone else. I also want to point out that geology is a field of patience, since often nothing can happen for a long time (as we see it). If you are bored waiting for something to happen you can pass the time by reading my short stories that I put on-line here. It is at least an way to pass the time when nothing is happening in Iceland. I update my short story website regularly when I finish new stories.
I have found a new website that allows me to add an donation button to this website. I am currently in verification process with that website and I hope to finish it in next few days. Once that progress is finished the new donation button is going to be added to this blog. If you want to donate to me regularly then it can be done by using the subscription button. I have not found this service in the same manner anywhere else then on Paypal. I am going to use Payza for one time donations. If you want to send one time donations to my Paypal account then you have to use my email address as explained here.
I also need donations to buy new hardware. This is just for repairs and to strengthen my geophone network in readability.
1: I need a new hard drive for Skeiðflöt geophone station (more details on this station below). A new hard drive costs 11700 ISK or 70,29€ (521,39 DKK).
2: I need to buy a backup power for Böðvarshólar geophone station. It costs 8950 ISK or 53,77€ (398,84 DKK). I did delay buying this due to lack of money at present time. I hope to buy the backup power in January-2014 at the latest if I can afford it. I am going to buy this backup power in December if I get donations for it.
The hard drive in Skeiðflöt geophone station is failing and has been doing so since earlier this year. I need to replace it before the hard drive fails completely. I have ordered a new one already and that is one of the reason why I don’t have any money at the moment. I need to add backup power for Böðvarshólar geophone station to deal with power fluctuation in the area, mostly during bad weather and general power issues.
Changes to geophone network
In December the geophone station at Skeiðflöt is stopping operation for good. The reason being is that the person how is hosting it for me is having personal changes and cannot host it for me any-more. This is the downside of having geophone station located in someone house. The hardware is going to be relocated to north Iceland and a new station is going to start operation. That geophone station has the name Bjarghús. I expect Bjarghús geophone station to be up and running around 20-December-2013 at the latest.
Thanks for the support.
Today (27-November-2013) an minor earthquake swarm took place in Esjufjöll volcano. This earthquake swarm was just three earthquakes according to Icelandic Meteorological Office website. There is a chance of more earthquakes not being detected due to bad weather in this area at the moment.
The three earthquakes in Esjufjöll volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
The largest earthquake in this minor earthquake swarm had the magnitude of 1,8 and had the depth of 4,5 km. Last eruption in Esjufjöll volcano was possibly in the year 1927, but it is not confirmed according to Global Volcanism Program.
Last week there was an conductivity spike in Skjálfandarfljót glacier river. It is not clear what did create this conductivity spike that was detected and it’s unknown what volcano or hydrothermal area was leaking water into the river. No glacier flood did follow this spike and no extra activity was detected following this. This conductivity spike was detected on the Thursday 22-November-2013 at 20:20 UTC.
On the 21-November-2013 there was an earthquake swarm in Þórðarhyrna volcano (part of Grímsfjall volcano). This was not large earthquake swarm or a strong one. With the largest earthquake just having the magnitude of 1,9. While I did just suspect it I did not have it confirmed until today that following this earthquake swarm was an harmonic tremor pulse. This harmonic tremor lasted from 03:30 to 06:10 UTC. Based on nearby SIL station this was not a strong harmonic tremor, but this is important because it suggests that something is taking place in Þórðarhyrna volcano. If this is going to lead to an eruption is unknown at current time. This might be a dike intrusion into the volcano at depth, but that has not been confirmed.
The harmonic tremor pulse can be seen at 21-November date on this tremor plot from Icelandic Meteorological Office. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
The harmonic tremor pulse as it did appear from Grímsfjall SIL station. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
Harmonic tremor pulse as it did appear on Jökulsel SIL station. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
This activity might not lead to an eruption, but given the past history of this area and the eruption in Grímsfjall volcano in the spring of 2011 I find it to be highly likely outcome that eruption is going to take place in Þórðarhyrna volcano in near future, it is not possible to know when such eruption might take place. Last eruption took place in Þórðarhyrna volcano in the year 1902, it is not known if any later eruptions have taken place in Þórðarhyrna volcano.
Blog post updated at 14:47 UTC.
There is currently ongoing interesting earthquake swarm activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. This earthquake activity appears to be taking place due to magma injection at depth into the volcano. Currently the earthquake activity doesn’t appear so clearly on the Icelandic Meteorological Office earthquake maps. I am not sure why that is, the largest earthquake so far has had the magnitude of 2,3 at the depth of 0,5 km so activity is already rather shallow, deepest activity had the depth of 17,5 km. Earthquake activity started in Tungnafellsjökull volcano in the year 2012, before that earthquake activity had taken place in Tungnafellsjökull volcano following an eruption in Bárðarbunga / Grímsfjall volcano in the year 1996 [map here of Week 41 - 1996]. Current earthquake activity is not based on any such event.
Earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
Tremor activity showing minor earthquakes taking place in Tungnafellsjökull volcano (most likely) over the past few hours. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
I am not sure yet what is happening in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. But data in mounting and suggesting that magma is about to start flowing into the volcano at faster rates then before (via dike intrusions). Tungnafellsjökull volcano has not erupted in historical times (at least no eruption is documented) so it is impossible to know for sure what happens next in this volcano. If an eruption where to take place it would be mostly basalt based on post sub-glacier eruptions (when they erupted is not known). Current earthquake activity might die down as it did in the year 2012 when (and earlier this year  also) this swarm like activity at depth (15+ km) started to happen.
Blog post updated at 04:36 UTC.
Blog post updated at 04:46 UTC.
Today (21-November-2013) an minor earthquake swarm took place in Þórðarhyrna volcano. All of this earthquakes were small, with the largest having just the magnitude of 1,9. Depth of this earthquakes was from 6,0 to 0,1 km. This minor earthquake activity is now detected for the first time due to a new SIL stations in the area. How long this type of activity has been ongoing is impossible to know since in the past there have been fewer SIL stations in the area.
Earthquake activity in Þórðarhyrna volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
This earthquake activity is not ice-quake activity, since the glacier is frozen now and with temperature down to -19C it is not going to move a lot. Last eruption in Þórðarhyrna volcano was in the year 1910 and it was connected to an eruption sequence that took place in Grímsfjall volcano at the same time (or that is at least the theory).
I am not yet sure what this means long term for activity in this volcano, since I know so little about how this volcano works due to lack of documented eruption history. If this earthquake activity intensifies from what is now taking place there is a small chance of something happening in Þórðarhyrna volcano. For the moment however, this is just a minor earthquake swarm and does not mean anything special. There have not been any changes in harmonic tremor on SIL stations close to Þórðarhyrna volcano.
On the 20-November-2013 an minor earthquake swarm took place in Katla volcano, it started at 06:21 UTC and was over by 08:54 UTC. This earthquake swarm was minor one, with the largest earthquake having the magnitude of 1,2. The deepest earthquake had the depth of 26,1 km. That means this earthquake swarm was due to magma changes in Katla volcano at depth.
Earthquake swarm in Katla volcano. This was a minor earthquake swarm. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
No further activity has taken place in Katla volcano following this earthquake swarm since it took place. Future activity cannot be ruled out since Katla volcano is highly active when it comes to earthquake activity.
On Saturday (16-November-2013) an earthquake swarm started on the Reykjanes. This earthquake swarm started slowly with only few unnoticeable earthquakes for most of the time. There was also a second earthquake swarm taking place due to water being pumped back into the ground. That did hide the current earthquake swarm to start with. This earthquake swarm is taking place in Brennisteinsfjöll / Bláfjöll volcano area.
The earthquake swarm on the Reykjanes. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Meteorological Office.
Largest earthquakes in the current earthquake swarm have so far just had the magnitude of 2,9. Stronger earthquakes cannot be ruled out at current time. At the moment there is nothing to suggest this activity is related to any magma movement at present time. Currently the earthquake swarm is ongoing and it is impossible to know if it is going to continue or just die out slowly. The strongest earthquakes appear clearly on my geophone website here.