A small earthquake swarm started today (30-June-2019) east of Grímsey island. Largest earthquake in this swarm had a magnitude of 3,6. There are no news that it had been felt.
The earthquake east of Grímsey island. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.
This is one of several earthquake swarms in this area of Tjörnes Fracture Zone this year. More activity can be expected in next few months. This earthquake swarm activity appears to be only tectonic in nature.
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Today (24-June-2019) at 13:09 UTC, 13:18 UTC and 13:55 UTC three strong earthquakes took place in Bárðarbunga volcano. The earthquake at 13:09 UTC has registered magnitude of mb4,5 at EMSC (information here). The earthquake at 13:55 UTC also has the magnitude of mb4,5 at EMSC (information here). Icelandic Met Office has the earthquake at 13:09 UTC at magnitude Mw3,3 and the earthquake at 13:55 UTC at magnitude Mw4,1. The earthquake at 13:18 UTC has a magnitude of Mw3,4. Smaller earthquakes have followed the largest earthquakes.
The earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.
This earthquake activity is because of inflation in Bárðarbunga volcano. Since Bárðarbunga volcano continues to be in a inflation stage this earthquake activity did not result in a movement of magma or an eruption. Two of the earthquakes were in the regular location (central caldera and north-east part of the caldera) and the earthquake at 13:09 UTC took place outside the caldera and in north-west part of the volcano. This is slightly unusual based on earlier earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano. Last strong earthquake in Bárðarbunga volcano was on 19-June-2019 and this a short time between strong earthquakes in Bárðarbunga volcano. This doesn’t seems to be unusual activity.
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Yesterday (19-June-2019) an earthquake swarm took place south-east of Bárðarbunga volcano. This area of Bárðarbunga volcano has been active since end of the eruption in February 2015 and possibly earlier than that. Last eruption in this area took place in with a start in February 1726 (+- 30 days) and ended in May 1726 (+- 30 days). More eruptions might have taken place at this location without being known or detected by people in the past.
The earthquake swarm south-east of Bárðarbunga volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.
The depth of this earthquake swarm is considerable. Deepest earthquake recorded had a depth of 30,4 km and it is a possible that might be an error or poor location, other earthquakes recorded had a shallower depth. The crust in this location is up to 45 km thick according to measurements. It is not possible to know if this earthquake activity is going to result in a eruption. If an eruption happens it might happen without any warning and not of lot of earthquake activity before it happens.
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After a long period of quiet an earthquake has happened in Bárðarbunga volcano. This earthquake had a magnitude of 3,4 and was in the usual place of central caldera of Bárðarbunga volcano. This earthquake had a smaller earthquake swarm activity happen few hours before it happened.
The earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano is marked by the green star. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.
It is not possible to know if this means there is going to be any more earthquake activity in Bárðarbunga volcano. Normally since everything started to quiet down, just one earthquake happens that is over magnitude 3,0 and then everything goes quiet again for several weeks to months. I do suspect that is going to be the pattern this time.
Due to how tired I am since I am working full workday (08:00 – 16:00) now my English grammar is all over the place in this article.
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Sometimes nature does something unexpected. This applies now to Torfajökull volcano. It seems that this earthquake activity started on 27-January-2019 without any warning. The article about that earthquake swarm can be found here.
The earthquake activity on 29-April-2019. A clear line of earthquake has appeared. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.
Second earthquake swarm on 3-May-2019. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.
The earthquake swarm on 4-June-2019. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.
After Bárðarbunga volcano eruption in 2014 I set-up a new system (that I use for my self. No-one uses something something similar that I know of) to detect possible eruptions. Each volcano is different and there is also a risk of false detection. However I do think that based on latest activity that something is going on in Torfajökull volcano. If this results in a eruption is too early to say at the time of writing of this article. If this is on a path to an eruption there might not be any warning or much of a warning besides few magnitude 3,0 to 4,5 earthquakes in Torfajökull volcano. Last eruption in Torfajökull volcano was in 1477 (north of the caldera) so its behaviour before an eruption is unknown. Last time a eruption took place in west side of the caldera was in the year 1170 or around that year.
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