On the third day of the eruption at Meradalur, a female team of IMO scientists went to observe the eruptive site, thanks to the helicopter
The lava flows mostly over the 2021 lava field and has almost reached the eastern end of the lava deposited at Merardalur. Lots of volcanic gases. (Kristin Jonsdottir).
The lava flows mostly over the 2021 lava field and has almost reached the eastern end of the lava deposited at Merardalur. - photo Kristín Jónsdóttir / IMO - one click to enlarge
Two people were injured while visiting the eruption which started yesterday on Iceland's Reykjanes peninsula. One of them broke his ankle and had to be taken to hospital by a Coast Guard helicopter. Several other people visiting the site required assistance with minor injuries. It is likely that thousands of people visited the eruption yesterday, according to RÚV, despite warnings from authorities that the hike is long and not for those inexperienced or unprepared/ill-equipped.
The hike to the site is approximately 17 kilometers long and includes considerable elevation gain.
Suðurnes Police Commissioner Úlfar Lúðvíksson reminds the public that the hike is difficult and not for everyone. He told RÚV that many people visiting last night's eruption were not carrying flashlights, although it had started to get dark in the evening.
Calm weather is expected at the site later in the day, meaning gas will likely accumulate in low-lying areas. Gas measuring equipment will be installed at the site of the eruption tomorrow. (site to consult before the hike: https://en.vedur.is/volcanoes/fagradalsfjall-eruption/volcanic-gases/)
The latest data from the eruption in Iceland:
- The lava flow drops to 18 cubic meters per second (during the previous eruption it was around 10 m3)
- Composition of the lava: basaltic, very similar to that of the end of the previous eruption.
- Crack size: 300 meters
The lava that erupted at Meradalur on the first day of the new eruption has a similar composition to that which erupted last year.
The concentration of MgO in the rapidly cooled glass is about 7.5% and the K2O/TiO2 ratio is 0.25.
The calculated temperature of the magma is 1190-1200°C and the equilibrium pressure of the dykes in the magma is consistent with the fact that the lava originated from a magma passage in the upper part of the earth's crust.
Scanning electron micrograph of a ground sample of new Meradalur lava, showing laminated basalt glass with plagioclase, olivine, clinopyroxene, and chromium spinel modals. The length of the scale is 0.1 mm. - Doc. 04.08.2022 / jardvis.hl.is
The opening of more cracks is likely...
Fissures to the northeast of Meradalur's eruption centers have subsided and it is believed that magma may be rising to the surface. Representatives of the Icelandic Meteorological Agency fly over the eruption centers at 1 p.m. and investigate the situation.
When a volcanic eruption erupted at Geldingadalur last year, it didn't take long for magma to reach the surface in several places. The Meradalur eruption is northeast of Geldingadalur, and now an area even further northeast needs to be explored. It is possible that other cracks will open.
If a new fissure opens to the northeast of the volcanoes, Kristín Jónsdóttir, group leader for natural hazards at the Icelandic Meteorological Office, says it is very unlikely that a danger will arise. Most likely it will be similar to last year when harmless cracks formed in many places. It is not considered likely that a magmatic corridor will continue to move northeast and reach the capital region. The Icelandic Meteorological Agency's models for medium-sized lava eruptions, which were then much larger than the eruption of Geldingadälar last year and Meradälar now, show that lava is very unlikely to reach one day the capital region.
Meradalur - a team from the Þorbjörn rescue team has finished setting up and marking a new hiking trail to the eruption
On the practical side, members of the Þorbjörn rescue team have finished setting up and marking a new hiking trail to the eruption. The route is almost 7 km long and tomorrow there will be an attempt to publish the route for GPS devices.
The route is simple, it starts at trail A and at Stórhól you can find new large poles with gray reflectors that you can follow up to this amazing view.
IMO has released a new map of the area, with a delineated danger zone, which you can see below.
Sources: IMO and Kristín Jónsdóttir, mbls, RUV, Institute of Earth science, Iceland Review.
Icelandic eruption could be start of decades of volcanic activity – read in Nat Geo / Dr. Robin G. Andrews
A moderate explosive activity continues at Karymsky.
Satellite data showed that an ash plume reaching 3,500 m.asl. extends over 28 km to the north northeast of the volcano.
The explosive activity of the volcano continues. Ash explosions up to 12 km a.s.l. could occur at any time. Ongoing activity could affect international and low-flying aircraft. The aviation code remains orange
Sources: KVERT & VAAC Tokyo