Minor earthquake swarm in Tungnafellsjökull volcano

Today (20-February-2019) there has been a minor earthquake swarm in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Largest earthquake in this swarm had a magnitude of 1,2 and other earthquakes where smaller in magnitude. Total of five earthquakes were detected.


The earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano (north-east of Bárðarbunga volcano). Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

It is unclear why this earthquake activity is happening. There is possible that some dyke intrusion is happening in the volcano but evidence remain unclear. This might also be crustal adjustment after Bárðarbunga volcano eruption in 2014 to 2015. I don’t think anything more is going to happen besides earthquake activity. Last eruptions happened sometimes 10.000 to 12.000 years ago and those are uncertain.

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Earthquake activity in Öræfajökull and Tungnafellsjökull volcanoes

This article contains information about two volcanoes. There is currently also a lot of earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano. But that is going to be a different article if needed.

Öræfajökull volcano

At the moment there is a continuous minor earthquake activity happening in Öræfajökull volcano. Largest earthquake in current swarm had the magnitude of 2,0 and second largest earthquake had a magnitude of 1,5.


The earthquake activity in Öræfajökull volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.


Earthquake rate in Öræfajökull volcano for the last 15 days. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

What worries me about Öræfajökull volcano is that it already seems to be at stage two in its path to an eruption. Article explaining that can be read here, Seismic patterns help forecast eruptions from quiet stratovolcanoes

Tungnafellsjökull volcano

There has been minor earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano in recent days but mostly in last few hours. It remains unclear at the moment why this earthquake activity is happening. It is a possibility that this just tectonic stress due to Bárðarbunga volcano activity in 2014 – 2015 eruption.


Earthquake activity in Öræfajökull and Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

As it currently stands I don’t think anything is going to happen in Tungnafellsjökull volcano for now.

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Ongoing earthquake activity in Öræfajökull volcano, fresh earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano

At the moment the earthquake activity that started in Öræfajökull volcano on 25-February-2018 is currently ongoing. Most of the earthquakes happening are small, most are smaller than magnitude 1,0.


Earthquake activity in Öræfajökull and Tungnafellsjökull volcanoes. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Tungnafellsjökull volcano

Directly north-west of Öræfajökull volcano is a another volcano making earthquakes. That volcano is named Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Most of its earthquake activity is also small earthquakes with magnitude smaller than 1,0. After the eruption in Bárðarbunga volcano 2014 – 2015 earthquake activity increased in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Earthquake activity was also high during the eruption in Bárðarbunga volcano due to stress changes in the crust. It is likely that current earthquake activity is due to adjustment of tectonic stresses.

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Earthquake swarm in Tungnafellsjökull volcano

In the last 24 hours (20-January-2018) an earthquake swarm started in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. All earthquakes that have happened so far are small and no earthquakes have so far reached magnitude 1,0.


The earthquakes in Tungnafellsjökull volcano (red dots), north of Bárðarbunga volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

At the moment there is nothing suggesting that magma is reaching the surface of this volcano. At the moment the earthquakes appear to be tectonic in nature. If they are due to influence of Bárðarbunga volcano (crustal stress changes) is unclear at the moment. Tungnafellsjökull volcano has not erupted in last 12.000 years and little data is on eruptions that are older than 12.000 years.

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Article updated at 20:00 UTC. Added text that was forgotten.

Sharp increase in earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano

During the last few days there has been a sharp increase in earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Since there has been no eruptions in the last 12.000 years it is not possible to know for sure what is going on. The earthquake activity suggests that this is a mixture of magma connected earthquakes and stress changes due to Bárðarbunga volcano changes. Making it nearly impossible to know for sure what is going on, at least for now anyway.


Tungnafellsjökull volcano is located north of Bárðarbunga volcano. It is marked by cluster of small earthquakes (red dots) on this image. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

What is different now, is that after a long period of quiet there was a sharp increase in earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. If past earthquake swarm activity is anything to go by I expect this earthquake activity to die out slowly and activity should go back to normal in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. That means no earthquake activity at all. I don’t think that anything has changed in that volcano, at least I don’t have any hard evidence of that being the case for the moment. That might change since lack of historical eruptions leaves a room for lot of speculations.

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Earthquake swarm in Tungnafellsjökull volcano

A small earthquake swarm took place in Tungnafellsjökull volcano during the night of 18-March-2017. All earthquakes that happened where minor in magnitude with many earthquakes having depth from 3 to 13 km.


The earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano (yellow dots, north of Bárðarbunga volcano). Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

It is not clear why this earthquake activity happened in Tugnafellsjökull volcano. This might be a dyke intrusion at depth or it might also just be a stress adjustment in the crust due to the inflation happening in Bárðarbunga volcano. It is not known at the moment if this is due to magma or stress adjustment in the crust. This is the first earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano after considerable period of quiet.

Earthquake swarm in Tungnafellsjökull volcano

For the past 48 hours (7th and 8th September-2016) an earthquake swarm took place in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. As earlier earthquake swarms this swarm has a small one, with only few dozen of earthquakes and the largest one only having the magnitude of 2,9. Most depth in this earthquake swarm was around 12 km.

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The earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

For the moment nothing suggests that an eruption is about to start in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. This volcano doesn’t have any recorded history of eruptions and that makes it impossible to know when next eruption cycle starts in it. Current earthquake activity started in the year 2012 and has continued since then, with long period of quiet between times of activity.

Short overview of earthquake activity in Iceland

This is a short update of earthquake activity in Iceland on 28-February-2016.

Bárðarbunga volcano

Over the past 48 hours there has been earthquake activity and dyke activity in Bárðarbunga volcano. Some of this earthquake activity has been on around 15km depth. Suggesting magma movements within Bárðarbunga volcano system. Earthquake activity always seems to increase few hours to days after a swarm of deep earthquakes appear in Bárðarbunga volcano.

A dyke activity has appeared on the edge of Bárðarbunga volcano, it is located south-east in the volcano. In a area that has seen this type of dyke activity before. It is interesting that this activity seems to persist at this location.

Tungnafellsjökull volcano

Over the past few days few earthquakes have appeared in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Some of those earthquakes have had the depth around 15 km. This suggest some type of magma movements inside the volcano, but nothing that suggests that its going to reach the surface any time soon.

Askja volcano

Earlier this week (Week 08) an deep earthquake swarm took place in Askja volcano. With earthquakes having the depth down to around 22 km. Suggesting that magma is flowing into Askja volcano magma chamber at depth. This has been happening at regular basis since 2010. At the moment there is nothing suggesting that eruption is going to happen any time soon in Askja volcano.

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Earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga, Tungnafellsjökull and Askja volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Iceland Met Office.

Katla volcano

There was some minor earthquake activity in Goðabunga in Katla volcano. This appears to be normal activity for this region of Katla volcano. No other interesting activity took place this week (Week 08) in Katla volcano.

Hekla volcano

Two earthquake where detected in Hekla volcano. Nothing else happened following this earthquake activity. Why this earthquake activity happens remains unclear.

Torfajökull volcano

A minor earthquake activity took place in Torfajökull volcano during the weekend. This activity is possibly due to changes in hyrdrothermal areas in Torfajökull volcano.

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Earthquake activity in Katla, Torfajökull and Hekla volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Iceland Met Office.

Other than this activity things remain quiet in Iceland. There are few minor earthquake swarms on Reykjanes peninsula and Tjörnes Fracture Zone. But they are too small at the moment to write about.

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Move to Denmark

It is now official. I’m moving back to Denmark on 14. April, with just few minor details left to work out (getting a loan for the apartment insurance and few other things). I’ll move into my new apartment on the 15th April. More details later next weeks when I know about the apartment loan.

Earthquake swarm in Bárðarbunga volcano (Week 06/2016 #2)

On Saturday 13-February-2016 at 19:32 UTC an magnitude 3,6 earthquake took place in Bárðarbunga volcano. Depth of this earthquake is registered 1,1 km. Swarm of smaller earthquakes followed the main earthquake, deepest earthquakes had the depth around 12 km.

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The earthquake swarm in Bárðarbunga volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Iceland Met Office.

Tungafellsjökull volcano

On Sunday 14-February-2016 an earthquake swarm started in Tungafellsjökull volcano. It’s still not known what is creating the earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. The most popular idea (among geologists) is that stress changes from Bárðarbunga volcano is resulting in earthquake activity in Tungafellsjökull volcano. I don’t know if that is true or not, since earthquake activity in Tungafellsjökull volcano started several years before the eruption in Bárðarbunga volcano in August-2014.

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Overview of week 44 activity in Iceland

This is a short overview of activity in week 44 in Iceland.

Tjörnes Fracture Zone (TFZ)

Earthquake swarm took place in TFZ in week 44. Largest earthquake had the magnitude of 3,5 and other earthquakes had the magnitude of 3,1. Other earthquakes where smaller in magnitude.

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Earthquake swarm on the TFZ. Largest earthquake swarm took place where the green stars are. Copyright of this image belongs to Iceland Met Office.

A second smaller earthquake swarm took place south of Grímsey. It is not connected to the stronger earthquake swarm east of Grímsey island.

Bárðarbunga volcano

A magnitude 3,0 earthquake took place in Bárðarbunga volcano. This suggests increased pressure inside Bárðarbunga volcano. I forgot to save image of last week activity in Bárðarbunga volcano.

Tungnafellsjökull volcano

Earthquake activity continues in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. As before all of the earthquakes taking place are small in magnitude. At the moment the earthquake swarm activity appears to be centered around the top of the volcano, one of the main craters. Earthquake activity is steady in Tungafellsjökull volcano at the moment. It sometimes drop down, as is to be expected when magma moves inside volcano.

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Earthquake activity in Tungnafellsjökull volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Iceland Met Office.

Skaftárkatlar cauldrons in Vatnajökull glacier

Recent survey of Skaftárkatlar cauldrons in Vatnajökull glacier has shown that the eastern cauldron has grown considerable in size. This is now thought to be the main reason why the glacier flood from eastern skaftárkatlar cauldron was the largest in recorded history. The cauldron is now 2,5 sq/km in size and 150 meters deep. Video of the overflight can be found here (Facebook). Measurements and other details can be found here at University of Iceland Earth science website (Icelandic). This are early results from recent survey.

Other things

Please remember to support my work with donations or by using Amazon. Due to problems with the Danish tax authorities I did not get my social welfare paid out this month in Iceland. Reason being that I have not got my copy of the tax statement for the year 2014, that I have . I hope this is resolved in November as has been promised to me. This however means that I have to use the salary for last months work to survive this month, money that I was saving in order to pay for moving cost when I move back to Denmark. If this is not resolved by December, I have to go on emergency income from my municipality. I won’t move to Denmark until this issue with the Danish tax is resolved. The temporary work that I was in is over so I’m going to be updating now when things happen in Iceland or close to it.

Once I’m back in Denmark I can start uploading detailed images of earthquakes and keep a real time watch about what is going on in Iceland. Its difficult for me to do that at the moment.