Iceland Volcano Replace as Webcams Present Lava Fountains As much as 260 Ft Tall

A volcano in Iceland has erupted for the third time in solely three months, sending jets of lava taking pictures tons of of ft into the air.

Livestreams from webcams throughout the Reykjanes peninsula present shiny orange plumes of molten rock leaking out of a fissure within the floor, and plumes of smoke billowing into the air.

The volcano is located about 2.5 miles northeast of the fishing city of Grindavík, which was evacuated solely final month after the volcano erupted proper on its outskirts, sending rivers of lava in the direction of the homes and burning a number of to the bottom.

Now, the volcano is erupting from a two-mile-long fissure that has opened up in a brand new location, near the location of the December eruption.

“At 5:30 this morning an intense seismic exercise began northeast of Mt. Sýlingarfell. Round half-hour later, a volcanic eruption began on the website,” the Icelandic Meteorological Workplace (IMO) mentioned in a press release on Thursday morning.

“The eruptive fissure lengthened each in the direction of north and south throughout the first minutes. The primary photographs from the Icelandic Coast Guard’s surveillance flight counsel that the eruption takes place at an identical location because the eruption on the 18th of December 2023,” they mentioned. “The lava fountains attain about 50-80 m [164-262 feet] top and the volcanic plume rises about 3 km [1.9 miles] above the eruptive fissure.”

A picture from the Icelandic Coast Guard’s surveillance flight. This eruption marks the third in solely three months.

Icelandic Meterological Workplace / Björn Oddsson

The fissure stretches between Mt. Sundhnúkur and the japanese a part of Mt. Stóra-Skógfell. The lava is generally flowing in the direction of the west, not within the route of Grindavík, which lies uninhabited because it was evacuated forward of the January eruption.

In response to the IMO, the lava stream seems to be much less highly effective than it was initially of the December 18 eruption, at which level sufficient lava was pouring from the bottom to fill an Olympic-sized swimming pool each 20 seconds.

The lava remains to be inflicting injury to infrastructure, nonetheless, because it has flowed throughout a highway close to the exit of the well-known Blue Lagoon bathing ponds, which have been evacuated, Icelandic nationwide broadcaster RUV reported.

The volcano retains erupting at completely different places as a result of Iceland’s distinctive seismic properties, geologist David Kitchen explains.

“Iceland is uniquely located on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, the place the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates are diverging. This tectonic exercise creates fissures and rift zones, making the crust thinner and extra fractured. Consequently, magma can extra simply discover pathways to the floor alongside these zones of weak spot. If tectonic forces alter these pathways, the placement of magma ascent can change,” Kitchen, an affiliate professor of geology on the College of Richmond, advised Newsweek.

“Magma chambers are reservoirs of molten rock beneath the floor. The dynamics inside these chambers, comparable to variations in stress, temperature, and magma composition, can affect the motion of magma. For instance, if a chamber turns into over-pressured, it might discover a new pathway to the floor, resulting in a shift within the eruption location.”

Tectonic actions and the load of overlying rocks may trigger the crust to fracture, creating new pathways for magma to erupt to the floor. Groundwater and glacier ice may play a task in Iceland particularly, as if magma touches water it creates quickly increasing steam, resulting in new fractures and paths for eruptions.

Volcanic tephra that was flung from the brand new eruption in Iceland. This glass-sharp rock was hurled miles away from the volcano.

Icelandic Meterological Workplace

In response to the IMO, items of volcanic tephra rock have been discovered miles away from the eruption website, having been flung all the way in which into Grindavík.

“Tephra is frothy and vesicular materials which varieties when splashes of lava cool rapidly within the air within the lava fountaining exercise. This course of befell when an eruptive fissure opened this morning (eighth of February 2024). As a result of tephras’ vesicularity and lightness it may be transported far inside the volcanic plume with wind,” the IMO mentioned in a brand new assertion.

Do you’ve a tip on a science story that Newsweek needs to be protecting? Do you’ve a query concerning the Iceland volcano? Tell us through [email protected].