Icelandic Bárðarbunga volcanic eruption begins

From the Icelandic Met Office

It is believed that a small subglacial lava-eruption has begun under the Dyngjujökull glacier. The aviation color code for the Bárðarbunga volcano has been changed from orange to red. Image follows.

volcano_status[1]

Webcam image showing either soil/dust being blown into the air by gas venting or ash being ejected.

barobunga_cam

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An interesting link to tracking the eruption:
http://baering.github.io/
Shows earthquakes in a 3D view to see where and when larger quakes have happened in context of event depth, cam view and other data.

Unmentionable

My view is this is not ash, that’s dust (OK, remobilized ash), the question is what is doing it.

Aphan

“Gas venting”

Otter (ClimateOtter on Twitter)

Climate change in action!
/Sarc
/Snark

FergalR

Latest image from the webcam – subterranean dyke was reported 25km long yesterday.
http://i.imgur.com/oDWdE8S.jpg

I wonder what direction the wind blowing in that pic of ash / gas venting in the main post? Normally Iceland winds prevail toward the east. Large Iceland population centers are to the west or southwest of Bárðarbunga.

Unmentionable

John Whitman says:
August 23, 2014 at 9:41 am
I wonder what direction the wind blowing in that pic of ash / gas venting in the main post? Normally Iceland winds prevail toward the east. Large Iceland population centers are to the west or southwest of Bárðarbunga.

nullschool shows 11 km/h from 240 degrees (up the central valley) but that’s moving approximately SSE, as far as I can determine.

joelobryan

Winds are south over that part of Iceland. Any plume would get moved east toward Ireland once over the Atlantic.

joelobryan

Winds are south over that part of Iceland. Any plume would get moved east toward Ireland once over the Atlantic.

Unmentionable says:
August 23, 2014 at 9:55 am
– – – – – – –
Unmentionable,
Thanks. If so, then the wind wasn’t carrying the ash/dust/gas in that pic toward the major Iceland population centers to the west or south west.
John

crabalocker

what does it suggest after the breach and you start getting more activity deeper down? Is that a good sign or a bad sign?

joelobryan
Pamela Gray

From a woman’s point of view, I would say that the contractions are about 2 minutes apart. The question is now, how big is this baby going to be?

Joel O’Bryan says:
August 23, 2014 at 9:57 am
– – – – – – –
Joel O’Bryan,
Thanks.
John

Unmentionable

Now this is different, the steady westward march of DYNC has reversed, and like its northern limb, both are now retracing the former path out. With an apparent vertical multi-day oscillation.
http://strokkur.raunvis.hi.is/gps/DYNC_3mrap.png
GSIG is still heading steadily SE
HAFS is heading NE
VONC is heading ESE and sinking slowly
GFUM is almost stationary
Most vertical motions are small.

Anything is possible

FergalR says:
August 23, 2014 at 9:38 am
That is not related to the eruption. It’s just a sandstorm.
http://www.mbl.is/frettir/innlent/2014/08/23/this_is_not_the_eruption/

joelobryan

Wind forecast at 300 mbar for later tonight.
http://virga.sfsu.edu/gif/jetstream_atl_h12_00.gif

john
Unmentionable

Thanks Joel.
Light winds from ~240 degrees forecast so why a sudden dust storm heading SSE, just when the quakes started ramping? That’s when it started because I checked the cameras right away at that time and it was not there. A few minutes later it started kicking up. It could be just a dust storm, of course, but it seems very coincidental given the forecast and the fact the western caldera area is now shrouded by it.

Anything is possible

From the link I posted above at 10:25am :
“Do not be fooled, this is not a photo of the Dyngjujökull eruption. This is a photo of a small sand storm near the Bardarbunga webcam, some distance away from the site where the eruption is supposed to have occurred.
The eruption took place under a glacier, so no photos have been taken of the eruption, nor has anyone seen the eruption.”

Old Goat

That it, then?

Unmentionable

“… A small subglacial eruption
As explained in the update article at two o’clock, seismic data indicates a small lava-eruption under the Dyngjujökull glacier. According to interpretation, magma has come in touch with ice. This has not resulted in flooding yet. However, tourists have been guided to leave the relevant area.
No visible changes were seen when the Icelandic Coast Guard airplane TF-SIF flew over the area this afternoon with representatives from the Civil Protection and experts from the Icelandic Met Office and the Institute of Earth Sciences. Data from radars and web-cameras is being received, showing no signs of changes at the surface. The estimate is that 150-400 meters of ice is above the area. …”
http://en.vedur.is/about-imo/news/nr/2960

Alan Bates

A reliable source of comment from a vulcanologist is
http://www.wired.com/category/eruptions/
His latest comment is:
“Big take-home message so far is that the eruption appears to be small and under the ice. If/when it melts through the ice (which Dave McGarvie guesses might take a few hours), we might seem some explosive activity. However, right now, this is not a repeat of Eyjafjallajökull 2010 or Grimsvötn 2011.”

Cam

How long until this eruption is used to explain the pause?

Richard111
Unmentionable

Anything is possible says:
August 23, 2014 at 10:41 am
From the link I posted above at 10:25am :
“Do not be fooled, this is not a photo of the Dyngjujökull eruption. This is a photo of a small sand storm near the Bardarbunga webcam, some distance away from the site where the eruption is supposed to have occurred.
The eruption took place under a glacier, so no photos have been taken of the eruption, nor has anyone seen the eruption.”
__
Anything is possible,
Just want you to do something here. Click on the image Anthony posted to expand it and have a close look. For a dust storm (no, not a sand storm, sand is too heavy and falls out too fast), it is extremely selective in where it occurs. Seen plenty of dust storms but not seen one do that.

AleaJactaEst

@Cam –
no need Cam, our Glorious British Broadcasting Communists have proudly shared to the proles that the heat is hiding deep in the oceans and will be back to fry us all in 2025. The chicken bones said so. How convenient.

Bezzle

How do they know it’s “small”? What criteria would make a subglacial eruption “medium-sized” or “large”? Does a “small” eruption automatically become “large” if it lasts long-enough, or is “small” referring to the rate of eruptive output?

Unmentionable

A mag 4.0 and mag 4.2 near the surface of the Caldera during last half hour.

Unmentionable

Apparently the Iceland Met Office is beginning to have bandwidth issues and are requesting reduced direct linking of images. Can someone please disable their display in this and the earlier post?
“Note up at Volcano Cafe:
And an urgent call: Please keep traffic on IMO sites as low as possible. If you have saved a siginficant webcam or IMO screenshot you can gain good karma by uploading it to image service like tinipic, imgur etc and post a link here. This way the traffic to the important sites can be reduced. Thank you!”

crabalocker

Reblogged this on The Next Grand Minimum and commented:
According to volcanodiscovery.com, “approximately 8600 years ago, Bárðarbunga produced the largest known lava flow during the past 10,000 years on earth (more than 21 cubic kilometers of volume.”)
Stay Tuned, we may be treated to a world changing experience.

pat

the “experts” are at it already:
22 Aug: UK Express: Nathan Rao: Icelandic volcano could trigger Britain’s coldest winter EVER this year
BRITAIN could freeze in YEARS of super-cold winters and miserable summers if the Bardarbunga volcano erupts, experts have warned.
The British Met Office said the effects of an explosion on Britain’s weather depends on the wind direction in the upper atmosphere.
Spokeswoman Laura Young said: “If the upper winds are north-westerly it will have an effect on our weather.
“If the upper winds are westerly then it won’t.”….
Weathermen say the effect in the UK could be nothing short of catastrophic if an explosion is strong enough…
Dr Nicolas Bellouin, an expert on atmospheric dust clouds at the University of Reading, said: “The current cold snap many of us are experiencing in the UK is due to the fact that at the moment the wind is coming from the north – putting Britain directly in the firing line of any volcanic eruption from Iceland, if it happens in the next few days…
http://www.express.co.uk/news/nature/502349/Iceland-ash-cloud-could-trigger-freezing-cold-winter-this-year-if-it-erupts

TXRed

Nag dabbit! I’m supposed to fly to the Netherlands next weekend, returning at the end of September. I really hope 1) the eruption stays small and low and 2) that the airlines have decent back-up plans for eruption-related disruptions this time.

Unmentionable

Expert: Likely no eruption yet – RUV
23.08.2014 20:24,
“The most likely scenario is that an eruption has not begun. This morning we saw a large increase in seismic activity and tremors, so it was perfectly rational to assume that an eruption had begun. A subglacial eruption melts the ice and causes floods. We surveyed the glacier for three hours today. I can of course not assert that nothing has happened, but it is clear that there are no signs of abnormal melting or other signs that normally appear during a subglacial eruption. It is therefore likely that the magma has not reached the surface yet – regardless of what will happen later in this process, because this is a fairly large event and those who delay to give timely warnings can carry a large responsibility. Therefore, it was considered proper to be careful today but when more information comes in, the most likely conclusion is that an eruption has not begun, whatever happens later in this event,“ said Magnus this evening on RUV television newscast. ”
http://www.ruv.is/frett/expert-likely-no-eruption-yet

I feel sorry for the old thing! This poor old honker just can’t get it up anymore.

Or I should say, like it used to. All us old goats get to that point some day.

This event in Kverkfjöll (not Bárðarbunga) to-day was probably not an eruption.

This story, by the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service (RUV), was updated on 23 August 2014, at 20:20 GMT / UT.
http://www.ruv.is/frett/small-eruption-believed-to-have-started
>>>Expert: Likely no eruption yet<<<
Geoscientists in Iceland seem to be of differing opinion regarding the small eruption that is believed to have taken place today. The Iceland Met Office said today that an eruption had likely taken place, but a professor of geophysics at University of Iceland sees no signs of an eruption.
A group of scientists surveyed the glacier today from the air, aboard a surveillance plane from the Icelandic Coastguard. After the flight, Magnus Tumi Gudmundsson, professor of geophysics at University of Iceland, was interviewed at RUV.
„The most likely scenario is that an eruption has not begun. This morning we saw a large increase in seismic activity and tremors, so it was perfectly rational to assume that an eruption had begun. A subglacial eruption melts the ice and causes floods. We surveyed the glacier for three hours today. I can of course not assert that nothing has happened, but it is clear that there are no signs of abnormal melting or other signs that normally appear during a subglacial eruption. It is therefore likely that the magma has not reached the surface yet – regardless of what will happen later in this process, because this is a fairly large event and those who delay to give timely warnings can carry a large responsibility. Therefore, it was considered proper to be careful today but when more information comes in, the most likely conclusion is that an eruption has not begun, whatever happens later in this event,“ said Magnus this evening on RUV television newscast.
Only time can tell
„The most current information I have is that the latest GPS deformation measurement shows that the dyke intrusion is getting wider and getting longer. That means that magma is still moving. Whether that results in an eruption or not, only time can tell. If we look at the Krafla eruptions, which are the most similar eruptions, we had a lot of dyke intrusions there at the beginning, but much smaller volcanic activity. We don´t know if this activity will show a similar pattern, but we have to be prepared. This run-up is positive in a way, because we have had time to prepare. There are no tourists in the area, so it´s positive that the process has not been more rapid. And of course, we all hope that this will end without an eruption and the ensuing damage.“
The dyke intrusion has been forming over the last few days. It is now believed to be around 25 km. long, and about 0,2 – 0,3 cubic kilometers of magma is thought to have entered the intrusion from a magma chamber beneath the Bardarbunga caldera. The intrusion has been propagating towards the north: it´s lenght seems to have increased by several kilometers just today.
At this stage measurements taken are based on a small event. The Jökulsárgljúfur canyon has been closed and evacuation of tourists in that area and around Dettifoss waterfall has started. The situation at this stage does not call for evacuation of habitants in Kelduhverfi, Öxarfjördur and Núpasveit. People in those areas are encouraged to watch news closely and have their mobiles switched on at all times.
This story, by the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service (RUV), was updated on 23 August 2014, at 20.20 GMT.
http://www.ruv.is/frett/small-eruption-believed-to-have-started
Updates in English will be posted at: ruv.is/volcano. Follow us on Twitter @ruvfrettir

DesertYote

Missing sentence:
“Researchers believe that volcanic eruptions will become more common as the climate warms due to green house gasses.”

pat says:
August 23, 2014 at 1:08 pm
the “experts” are at it already:
================================================
There is one significant point to consider as we all watch and kibitz on the next move that nature may take. History shows us what the potential is for a major blast from this region can do to the Northern Hemisphere, as well as the negative impact to the region. In that regard the attention given to this possible event is fully warranted, as opposed to the reasoning of the catastrophic global warming believers.

I hate to tell you folk this, but it is the week-end, and teenagers up there have Viking blood. All these swarms of earthquakes and clouds of dust is just the kids ripping around on four-wheelers.
(I always joke in serious situations.)

TomR,Worc,MA,USA

“Here come da heap big coldy……..”

My impression is that airlines are far better prepared this time, protocols in place with regulators, there’s even an ash detection system but I don’t know how many airplanes have it yet.

Amazing Iceland has been occupied for over a millennia.
(Recall Vikings were there, from where they discovered Greenland, which they farmed from about 950 to 1350AD. (Sheltered SW corner of Greenland.
That’s during the Medieval Warm Period that climate alarmists deny.)

Larry Ledwick

Interesting observations from playing with the 3D display at :
http://baering.github.io/
If you rotate it so you are looking at the activity from the bottom, there are two vertical stacks of earth quakes. The obvious smaller dense channel, and the big quakes on the left side of the display are from the same view point also almost directly above each other.
Secondly there has been a rash of small shallow quakes at about 1 – 0.5 km or so depth recently if you rotate the display in the proper position, you can see that they form a flat sheet as if a hard cap was unzipping along a horizontal plane in two dimensions just below the surface due to pressure from below.
It is easy to imagine that that arrangement of shallow quakes could mark a horizontal split developing just above the top of the vertical column that has the most seismic activity. Much like a lid on a jar bulging as the jar is heated and getting ready to blow off.
Pure speculation but I thought the 3D relationships were interesting and it would be something to watch as this seismic series plays out and the eruption goes or fails to develop.

Keith Minto

English updates at http://www.ruv.is/volcano

Reblogged this on Centinel2012 and commented:
If it erupts it will be because of climate change and that will be the reason the year 2014 will be colder than it should have been.

Anything is possible
joelobryan

The mag 5.3 just recorded was almost directly under the Bárðarbunga caldera, depth (also coincidentally) at 5.3 km.

joelobryan

That 5.3 jolt on a loaded caldera is akin dropping a hot can of pepsi on concrete. Lots of gas encouraged to evolve out and ratcheting up pressures.