Bardarbunga Volcano – Updated

29th August 2014

Eruption was confirmed at 00.02 and lasted 2-3 hours on Friday morning. This was a small deviation from the process that is going on in the area, magma is still flowing and cracks are forming in the landscape.

eruption iceland

For an overview of the updates on Bardarbunga volcano, check at the bottom of this post. 

As most people remember, Iceland hit the headlines in 2010, with the notorious eruption of Eyjafjallajökull volcano. This controversial volcano, not only caused tremendous damage to the Icelandic farmers, it also caused major disturbances for Icelanders and in air-traffic across Europe and North America.  In addition, to cancelled flights, destroyed farms, dead farm animals and stranded passengers, the volcano troubled news reporters and passengers pronouncing the name of the volcano as can be seen in the videos below.


(Video of the Eyjafjallajökull eruption in 2010)


(Video of pronunciation of Eyjafjallajökull)

Bardarbunga Volcano

After the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull, most Icelanders and foreigners alike hoped the Icelandic nature would behave for a while. However despite high hopes, those wishes seem to be short lived, as another volcano (Bardarbunga) seems to be about to erupt. The Icelandic authorities have already issued warnings after series of intense seismic activities that have persisted since the 15th of August. The intensity of the seismic activities has increased day by day with over 1,155 earthquakes in the surrounding Vatnajökull glacier area, where Bardarbunga volcano is located. Here is the activity in Bardarbunga the last 48hrs visualised:

If the eruption takes place, the effects could become even more devastating than Eyjafjallajökull, as the magnitude of the Bardarbunga volcano is larger, partly because the volcano is located on the largest glacier in Iceland, Vatnajökull and therefore there is an increased risk of formation of ash clouds, but those were the major cause behind the devastation of Eyjafjallajökull in 2010. A volcano located under a glacier will also cause a large flooding before an eruption, in this case it could lead to enormous amount of water flowing in the area. Roads around Bardarbunga are currently closed.

For now, let’s hope this is only a practical joke by the Icelandic nature.

Below is a Aviation colour code map from the Icelandic Met Office, Bardarbunga is located at the orange spot. Update will follow.

Bardarbunga-volcano-status

Bardarbunga volcano – overview

Ongoing rapport of the seismic activity in Bardarbunga is from The Icelandic Met Office. Currently, there are no signs of magma moving to the surface, some say that the likelihood of an eruption is 50/50.

27th August 2014

Fissure swarms are present in Bardarbunga volcano and it is assumed that an eruption has started or has occurred. This is confirmed by the Icelandic Met Office and the Civil Protection in Iceland, according to mbl.is. Conditions are difficult at the moment so there will not be new information until the morning of the 28th August. Ice from the glacier has not melted.

26th August 2014

The largest earthquake yet, magnitude 5.7, hit Bardarbunga.

24th August 2014

A magnitude 5.3 earthquake occurred at Bardarbunga at 00:09 on 24 August 2014. This is the largest earthquake so far within Bardarbunga.

23rd August 2014

A magnitude 4.6 earthquake occurred at Bardarbunga. Prohibited area in the highlands has been extended.

21st August 2014

Seismic activity in Bardarbunga and surrounding area is still great. As yesterday, the main activity stems from the intrusive event under Dyngjujökull. The highest magnitude during the last 24 hrs was about magnitude 3.8, measured at 23:38 last night, on the 20th August.

20th August 2014

There have been no observations of migration to the surface or any other signs of imminent or ongoing volcanic activity. The Icelandic Met Office cannot exclude that the current activity will result in an explosive subglacial eruption, leading to an outburst flood (jökulhlaup) and ash emission. Three dimensional video of the activity from 16-20 August 2014 has been created:

The colour of the dots implies the date: First there are red dots, then orange, yellow, light-green and then green. Please note that height and depth are exaggerated five times

19th August 2014

Around 1.000 small earthquakes were detected in the Bárðarbunga region from midnight between the 18th and the 19th until Tuesday evening the 19th of August. All of the earthquakes were smaller than magnitude 3 and most were located in the cluster east of Bárðarbunga. The cluster east of Bárðarbunga continued to slowly migrate northeastwards. Activities are still located at around 5-12 km. depths, there are no signs of upwards migration so far.

18th August 2014

Since the onset of the earthquake swarm at Bardarbunga on Saturday morning 16th August 03:00am, around 2.600 earthquakes have been detected with the earthquake monitoring network of the Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO).

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