Sigrún Davíðsdóttir's Icelog

The whimsical volcano

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This morning, the ash from Grímsvötn has again increased. The eruption is steady, apparently it’s ten times bigger, in terms of ash production, than Eyjafjallajökull last year. The fumes rose highest up to 20 km, the best way of measuring and indicating the strength of the eruption. Since yesterday it’s been 10-15 km, falling under 10 km at times.

There is a crater building up, indicating that lava will start running at some point.* Then the ash production will stop. For the time being, it’s impossible to say when and if this happens but normally, ash rises only, at the most, for the first few days.

In terms of disruption, it all depends on winds and air currents as to where the ash will be floating. The outlook for the UK on Wednesday is uncertain. The UK authorities are bracing themselves for possible flight cancellations.

For the time being, there are no flights in and out of Iceland. This might change, later on. Icelandair hopes to be flying later in today but this will be announced in the coming hours.

*As it is now, there is plenty of water, melted glacier, in the crater. It’s the contact of water and lava from the crater that creates the ash. When the water has evaporated ash doesn’t form any more and the lava starts to flow.

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Written by Sigrún Davídsdóttir

May 23rd, 2011 at 7:38 am

Posted in Iceland

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