The Sundhnukur Fires. Summary, precedents, and future.

We are still learning. There is much we humans don’t know about volcanoes or about how they behave. The past few years have been enlightening. It all started in January 2020, the Svartsengi region started rising, and an elliptical area of inflation appeared that encompassed Mount Thorbjörn, the Svartsengi Power Plant, and the 800 years…

IMS 54, Palmer Station, Anvers Island, Antarctica peninsula

The Hunga Tonga treaty

Did you know that there is an international treaty on eruptions? In truth, there isn’t. But there is a treaty on nuclear explosions, and there are similarities between explosive volcanic eruptions and nuclear explosions. Banning eruptions would go a bit above the United Nations powers. Could a volcanic eruption appear as a nuclear test? There…

And the sea was no more: the story of the Tethys marbles

The Elgin marbles International controversies can seem intractable. This particular one is about history set in stone. The Elgin marbles were the decorating sculptures of the Parthenon of ancient Athens. The Earl of Elgin (Thomas Bruce), ambassador to the Ottoman empire, acquired them in the early 1800’s. The acquisition had doubtful legality, although opinions differ…

Late Night Icelandic Fireworks

A brief post from Nick whilst we write a more detailed post and to keep the comment thread under control… Just as my head hit the pillow at around 11 pm last night, my phone went doolally… “ERUPTION.” So I dived headlong down the stairs to wake up the PC that I’d only minutes before…

When volcanoes bring rain?

I feel fascinated by volcanoes and I think that’s quite obvious, but there’s also room for other natural phenomena, like weather. In Spain, my home, volcanoes are rare. We do have a ~10,000-year-old monogenetic volcanic fissure in northern Spain, part of the Catalan Volcanic Field, a cluster of weak alkaline volcanic fields that have been…

Santa Maria: volcano in denial

Before climate change denial, there was volcano denial. This is the story about a forbidden eruption, the one that was suppressed and deleted from history. It is the one that got away. Blame Iceland. This post had been up for barely one day when events in Iceland rapidly moved towards another, potentially very damaging, Reykjanes…

A ”quick” tour of volcanism on Io

By Jesper Sandberg 1. The variety of moons out there and the discovery of Io’s true nature After writing my article on the Pillan Pateras 1997 eruption, it is time to return to Io with a general overview, because there are not many articles on this. Jupiter’s Moon Io is by far the most volcanic…

Kilauea’s triple SWRZ

2023 has been a lively year for Kilauea volcano. While the arguably most active volcano in the world is always doing something, this year has been particularly dynamic. So far it has produced 3 brief but spectacular eruptions at the summit crater: the January 5, June 7, and September 11 outbreaks. Apart from the eruptions,…

Grindavik Visualised – Part I

Due to this article being so graphics heavy, I had to break it up into two parts, with the second part coming tomorrow evening. It is somewhat ironic that my brain is operating mainly in a graphical mode, and that I think in visualisations and graphic models, whereas at the same time I am about…

The Reykjanes Fires, 950-1240 AD

This is a repost of a summary by Hector, of the previous round of Reykjanes eruptions, a millennium ago. (The post is not as old as that, though. It was written during the first Fagradalsfjall eruption, at the very start of the new fire season.) The discussion includes two of the three Svartsengi eruptions of…