Inflation has reached 20 cm: Could erupt without any notice

The crater as it was photographed on May 9, 2024.

The crater as it was photographed on May 9, 2024. mbl.is/Hörður Kristleifsson

New eruption fissures could open up between Stóra-Skógafell and Hagafell and lava flow could be similar to that at the beginning of the last eruption. This could happen very fast, even without notice.

The Met Office reports this in a new announcement.

It says that inflation will continue in Svartsengi at the same speed as it has.

“Since the last eruption on March 16, the inflation has been measured at nearly 20 cm on the GPS station in Svartsengi. The magma accumulation continues and there is an increased likelihood of a new magma run and also a volcanic eruption,” the announcement states.

Reached the upper mark

It is reported that in previous magma runs and volcanic eruptions, approximately 8 to 13 million cubic meters of magma have been added to the magma chamber under Svartsengi between events before the magma run breaks away from the magma chamber to the Sundhnúkagígar crater row.

“The amount of magma added since March 16 has now risen above the upper mark.”

A few near 2-magnitude quakes

The seismic activity is reported to be quite similar between days.

“In the last week, about 50 to 80 earthquakes have been measured every day, most of them in the areas between Stóra-Skógafell and Hagafell on the one hand and south of Mt Þorbjörn on the other. Most of the earthquakes are smaller than 1,0 in magnitude, but isolated earthquakes of nearly 2,0 in magnitude have been measured.”

Signs of a new magma run would be as before, local seismic murmurs in and around the magma run, faster deformation, and pressure changes in the boreholes in the area.

The Icelandic Met Office is monitoring the situation closely on 24-7 shifts.

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