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Beginning of the end or end of the beginning in Iceland?

April 12, 2010, 12:03 PM


The Eyjafjallajökull-Fimmvörduháls eruption at night on April 10, 2010.

I mentioned this earlier in the Monday Musings column, but the Eyjafjallajökull-Fimmvörduháls eruption in Iceland that started last month seems to be at a nadir of activity since its inception. This is being interpreted by the Icelandic Met Office as a sign that the eruption itself may be winding down after less than a month of activity - the earthquakes and inflation associated with the eruption appears to be subsiding along with the actual eruptive activity. Now, there is always the chance that the fissure will roar back to life, or {SPECULATION} possibly that the magma is being diverted in a tube system that we are not privy to see. However, as Eruptions readers have reported, there are still intermittent steam plumes at the vent area, so we might expect to see at least some more (potentially limited) eruption from the vent. Be sure to check out the new measurements made by the Met Office on the eruption through April 9.

To me, this is a bit of a surprise as many of the recent Icelandic fissure eruptions have lasted months to years, so this could just be the end of one phase of the eruption and the beginning of another. However, this is speculation on my part - we could just be seeing the end of this intrusion of basalt into the upper crust that lead to this spectacular event. However, I'm sure the Icelandic tourism board would not like to see this eruption end so soon.

 

Beginning of the end or end...

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