An earthquake of magnitude 5.5 hit the northern rim of the Bárðabunga caldera this morning shortly after 3 am. This is one of the biggest earthquakes to hit the region since increased seismic activity was first recorded there on August 16.
The eruption at Holuhraun was a play of lava fountains today. Volacanologist Ármann Höskuldsson took a video of the eruption which can be seen here. He stresses that the volcano can be dangerous and that nobody should move closer to it than a five-minute run to the next car.
The eruption in Holuhraun continues, although there appears to have been a slight decrease in activity compared to yesterday.
Travel companies offering tours in Iceland are looking into the possibility of adding organized tours to the eruption site in Holuhraun north of Vatnajökull glacier. They are waiting for the Department of Civil Protection to open more areas.
It is clear that the future of the Holuhraun eruption remains a big question mark. “The eruption may continue for a week or even a month. To predict what happens next we have to investigate GPS measurements to see if the pressure below has been reduced. If not, the eruption can just go on and on...
The status of the Holuhraun eruption, north of Vatnajökull glacier, didn’t changed much during the night. Seismic activity in the area has decreased. A film crew from the BBC arrived at the eruption site at 10:30 last night.
TF-SIF, the Icelandic Coast Guard's aircraft, was used for a surveillance flight over the Holuhraun eruption site this afternoon, 1:45-4:30 pm.
Volcanologist Ármann Höskuldsson went with other scientists to the eruption fissure this afternoon. He says it is difficult to assess the size of the eruption. The lava fountains have now reached a height of 30 to 50 meters (100 to 160 feet) again. The fissure is on fire from end to end.
Even though a substantial eruption is ongoing at Holuhraun, it changes little in the big picture as there is still an extensive volume of magma in the Bárðarbunga caldera and the intrusive dike that has formed underground, according to geophysicist Páll Einarsson.
Gas measurements at the Holuhraun eruption site indicate that there are currently high levels of sulfur dioxide close to the eruption.
The eruption which started in Holuhraun lava field, north of Vatnajökull, yesterday morning, is subsiding quickly.