What did happen in Hamarinn volcano yesterday

I really did think that a eruption was about to start in Hamarinn volcano yesterday. As the signal that I was seeing was not far from what I did see on 12 July, 2011 when a eruption did take place for sure in Hamarinn volcano.

Here is the tremor signal from 12 July early in the morning.

The harmonic tremor signal on 12 July, 2011 at 07:49 UTC. Copyright of this picture belongs to Iceland Met Office.

Here is the signal on the 27 September, 2011.

The harmonic tremor signal on 27 September, 2011 at 09:34 UTC. Copyright of this picture belongs to Iceland Met Office.

The tremor signal in July was stronger, but it looks almost the same way as the signal yesterday (27 September, 2011) did. So I think I know what did happen yesterday (27 September, 2011) in Hamarinn volcano. There might have been a minor dike intrusion into Hamarinn volcano. There where no earthquakes as it might have been going up resistance free pathway. But it is hard to know that for sure at the moment. Later events might however make what happened yesterday more clear what did happen on 27 September, 2011.

Note: I am looking for data on El Hierro volcano. As I am going to make a special blog post about it soon. I am looking for everything that I can get my hands on and might be useful to me.

Note 2: I have updated this blog post here and added the most recent eruptions in Iceland. Blog post: A short history of volcano eruptions in Iceland

Blog post updated at 12:59 UTC on 28 September, 2011.

This entry was posted in Dyke intrusions, Hamarinn, Harmonic tremors, Magma, Monitoring, Volcano. Bookmark the permalink.

64 Responses to What did happen in Hamarinn volcano yesterday

  1. Sander says:

    Interesting indeed what happend in Hamarinn

    THink you have this information about El Hierro already but useful anyway

  2. June says:

    Will the eruption cause trouble for european air?

  3. June says:

    i meant for El Hierro volcano.. will it cause flight disruption?

    • Patrick says:

      Good question – what are the ingredients for a nice big high-reachin’ ash cloud?

    • Sander says:

      If I read it correct it will be a eruption with low ash emission, mostly lava fountains and lava flows. However, when the magma comes into contact with water (eruption close to the coastline or on the bottom of the sea) there will be a lot more ash..

  4. jenny says:

    This is the only webcam I’ve been able to find for El Hierro, what seems to be an official website for emergencies, and the governments site.

  5. gandalf1 says:

    Hi Jon, some links for you for El Hierro if you dont have them already

    You can monitor the earthquakes here, refresh to update, it updates sometimes once an hour and sometimes a couple of times per hour. You can click on the individual hour lines to get a detailed 60 min view. Just change the date in the URL each day :


    This link is for accumilated energy release, it updates every day I think :


    This link shows the depths of the earthquakes over time, I think it updates every 30 mins, refresh to update :


  6. Sander says:

    2.6 in Katla caldera.. See if there will be more quakes…

  7. Craig M says:

    Showing two quakes both at 90% accuracy. Second quake was outside of caldera. As this is one second after the 2.6 quake is this a ghost?

    28.09.2011 13:16:35 63.676 -19.306 0.4 km 1.7 90.01 4.9 km NW of Goðabunga
    28.09.2011 13:16:34 63.609 -19.147 1.1 km 2.6 90.04 4.0 km NW of Hábunga

  8. Sissel says:

    About el Hierro, this is an impressive energy graph:


    • Sander says:

      It says nothing about if there will be an eruption or not… The quakes are still occuring at a large depth..

  9. clickpix says:

    and on 3 again on El Hierro
    1100116 28/09/2011 13:37:24 27.6702 -18.0740 15 3.0 mbLg SW FRONTERA.IHI

  10. Andy Scollick says:

    Off topic: Etna volcanic tremor plot – possible first sign of next paroxysm?

  11. Christina says:

    Is there someone working on something around where your Hekla helicorder is, Jon? So much noice there during the day, and silent during the night 😛

    • There is a storm going to pass over Iceland this evening and tonight. So there is going to be a lot of wind noise in the next 24 hours or so.

      • Christina says:

        Ah, but I was thinking about like last night? 😛

      • It is the same, it is the wind. Human noise makes special pattern that looks different. As this is not far from the coastline (~40 km I think). The change in temperature during the day creates a local wind during the day.

        This stops during the night. This is common in costal areas in Iceland.

  12. Lurking says:

    Note: I am looking for data on El Hierro volcano. As I am going to make a special blog post about it soon. I am looking for everything that I can get my hands on and might be useful to me.

    Dunno if you have it, but you can derive quite a bit about El Hierro’s architecture from this:

    Gravitational spreading controls rift zones and flank instability on El Hierro, Canary Islands



    The effects of flank collapses on volcano plumbing systems


    • Lurking says:

      And a… well, not OT, but more of an in depth rummaging around and speculation. Mainly aimed at Carl and Jack.

      This is a fabricated plot of the possible temperature gradient under El Hierro.

      The quakes are predominantly around 11 km down, and have been trending downward while apparently (to me) following a planar movement south along existing strata. The quakes are also becoming somewhat wider in the vertical spread.

      Poking around the net for data, I came up with a hydrocarbon generation analysis that used 42°C/km as a temperature gradient starting point. This gradient was chosen based on borehole measurements for a site located about 300 km southwest of El Hierro. The paper specifically stated that it was higher that usual due to the proximity of the volcanic islands.

      In a previous PowerPoint slide discussing geothermal energy in Iceland, one of the graphics showed the SISZ to have a gradient in the range of 75°C to 100°C/km in the area north of Katla over to the triple junction near Hengill.

      In my opinion, El Hierro’s actual gradient will be somewhere between these two values.

      So.. here ya go. Ruminate at your leisure.


      (yeah, it’s a bit of a cross post, but I wanted to make sure Jack and Carl could get an eyeball on the plot)

  13. luisport says:

    ‎1100131 28/09/2011 16:47:31 27.5729 -18.0062 11 3.4 mbLg S FRONTERA.IHI
    há 2 minutos.

  14. @Lurking & Jack:
    Here is the link to the Laki lavas and their chemical composition and the eruptive sequence of Laki.
    Interesting read indeed.

  15. newby says:

    Etna giving a good show tonight.


  16. Christina says:

    Seriosly, can someone that can speak Norwegian, Sweedish, or Danish back me up here a littlebit? I go insane of people who thinks that El Hierro is the end of the world, and has the same capasity as Yellowstone… Arrrg!

    Here: http://www.vg.no/reise/artikkel.php?artid=10030392&fb_comment_id=fbc_10150328236547789_18988707_10150328305137789

    Check under comments……..

    • gmkarlsen says:

      The article is mostly about the evacuation, and I don’t think those comments with yellowstone and end of the world in it is serious.

    • Tomas Jensen says:

      53 people has been evacuated from Frontera in the north. No sudden big eruption is expected. The increased intensency is causing fear for a eruption.

      Hope this short translation helps :O)

      • Jose Luis says:

        There are some very stupid comments on that site, don’t take them seriously. Bortkastet tid! (waist of time
        Here the news from Spain is treated like a little fill event, according to them people who have evacuated due to possible landslides is not an imminent eruption

      • Jose Luis says:

        Sorry the text is repeated a trick the computer to copy and paste to the translation

    • Ahm they have seen the “doom and gloom” videos of El Hierro.
      Even Yellowstone is not so large “Yellowstone”…
      It is no point to try to educate them.
      Must go to bed now…

    • GeoLoco says:

      Oh, the end of mankind could come soon in geol0gical time (no reason to stay awake at night…), but even the biggest supervolcano will only contribute to the evolution and shaping of earth and not lead to it’s end.
      End time freaks often have very interesting inputs and thoughts, especially about the results of our vulnerable society facing natural hazards, but don’t eat up all that they serve… 🙂
      El Hierro is not Yellowstone. Want interesting potential rarely spoken about? -> Campi Flegrei; but here too, no need to lose any calm, just interesting to think and learn about these potentials…

      • Lurking says:

        You know… now that C/2010 X1 (Elenin) has likely broken up, the Doomistas have given up on it.

        I wonder if they ever read Lucifer’s Hammer by Niven and Pournelle.

        In that story a doomsday comet, destined for impact, makes a swing around the Sun, breaks up and hits the Earth with a shotgun blast of fragments instead of one big whump.

    • Sissel says:

      There are some very stupid comments on that site, don’t take them seriously. Bortkastet tid! (waist of time).

      • AW says:

        Waist of time, is that some kind of belt for time travelers? Sorry, had to

      • Sissel says:

        Haha, yes, and I invented it! Try it out, it makes travelling comfortable…
        Afraid I’m affected by Guggle translator. Meant waste of time, of course.

  17. New blog post about what I need to buy the two new geophone stations so I can monitor Katla volcano and Reykjanes and SISZ.

  18. Alyson says:

    Thank you Jon, Lurking and gandalfi for all the off topic detail on El Hierro. Its potential is quite great for something unexpected, whether eruption or slip, and in any direction, if the Muenn article tells us anything. Most recent was a 3.5 in the sea, south of the island.

  19. Clickpix says:

    Stronger EQ swarm…
    1100299 29/09/2011 04:56:25 27.6303 -18.0066 12 3.2 mbLg S FRONTERA.IHI
    1100292 29/09/2011 04:43:08 27.6723 -18.0599 16 3.5 mbLg SW FRONTERA.IHI
    1100283 29/09/2011 04:21:46 27.6743 -18.0701 16 3.0 mbLg SW FRONTERA.IHI
    1100302 29/09/2011 04:14:05 27.6795 -18.0617 15 2.5 mbLg SW FRONTERA.IHI

  20. Irpsit says:

    Jon, why not to install a geophone in the “dead zone” rather than Reykjanes. That zone is so often ignored, and yet site of some of the largest eruptions in Icelandic history. A geophone there would be very interesting because you could detect tremors at a place with no official IMO stations (only Skrokkalda, but that is north of Veidivotn). A geophone at Katla is of course a very good idea, especially because often earthquakes are not correctly measured.

    My idea would be for installing a geophone a bit south of Veidivotn, so that it could pick eventual vibrations from Eldgjá, Laki, and also Veidivotn, Hamarinn and Loki. Another good place for a geophone would be north of Vatnajokull, at the edge of the glacier, the area is ice-free in summer time, because the only station in that area is at Grimsfjall, and in my opinion, there is a need for detectors close to Bardarbunga and also Kverfjoll.

    • Jack @ Finland says:

      Those stations need electricity. If no mains line is available, you’ll need a large solar power panel, which increases costs pretty quickly.

      • Chris says:

        You also need housing and internet connection.

      • Jack @ Finland says:

        Suitable cases are available for reasonable cost, and the internet connection can be based on 3G networks. But the lack of mains line is the most pricey shortcoming the area has.

    • Jack is right, but I agree that it would have been a good idea for the very reasons you state Irpsit.
      With a bit of luck and somewhere in the future there will be a marked increase in equipment in the region, all that I can say for now.

  21. luisport says:

    What’s happening in Flatey station and some others?

  22. clickpix says:

    1100382 29/09/2011 09:12:04 27.6743 -18.0673 15 III 3.8 mbLg SW FRONTERA.IHI

  23. Christian T says:

    Is this true?

    Mag. 5.3 23.5 km ENE of Borgarnes

    Poor quality though…

  24. luisport says:

    1101023 30/09/2011 11:46:40 27.5327 -18.2859 33 2.4 mbLg ATLÁNTICO-CANARIAS This one is very deep… it’s strange!

  25. Frank says:

    I know you have already some links from the IGN, but this one is for all resources they have about El Hierro: http://www.ign.es/ign/resources/volcanologia/HIERRO.html

    There is also a page for some emergency groups with some news about it:

    This is also the most frequently updated page i’ve found with news about the volcano:

    Every link above is in spanish, but you can find also some good english information about all this issue, a very good report on this link:


    Hope this could be useful.
    Greetings from Canary Islands!

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