Mystery flashflood reveals new hydrothermal system and probable small subglacial eruption this week, or two, or three…


Who the f#@k named a volcano Loki anyway…

The other night there were some gentle rumblings on the west side of Vatnajökull

Literally: small earthquakes and low frequency tremors characteristic of large volume fluid flows.



Fögrufjöll (click to embiggen)

From geographic.org

This was right under “Hamarinn” – aka Loki – Fögrufjöll



Hamarinn (click to embiggen)

From vedur.is

These are part of the complex of volcanic bumps and bits on Bárðarbunga, which is a ginormous volcano which has been swelling ominously for some years now.

The next morning, Hágöngulón was two feet higher.



Hágöngulón (click to embiggen)

From Landsvirkjun

That is one of several reservoirs for the large complex of hydroelectric power stations west of the glacier. 30+ km2

i-b1e45aef2ce8e054dc29629682fccc30-hamarinn-hagongulon.jpg



There is now a big dimple in the glacier (click to embiggen)

From RUV
This is where the presumptive eruption took place, under the ice.
The ice is thick, and there seem to be a lot of these small subglacial eruptions that fail to break out – in the past they’d have been “unconfirmed”, inferred from the floods, small earthquakes and occasional smell.
Now, with modern seismography, GPS measurments etc we are picking up on them.
Scary.

Vedur.is has a nice summary of the activity with maps and locations of the earthquakes under the ice



click to embiggen

This is getting to be very active, and there still ongoing tremors and small earthquakes all over the main mid-atlantic rift, as well as down Reykjanes.
Some rearrangement still going on down there.

Question is what will pop up, and where and when.

Jón as always is the go to guy