The VSI scale

Guest post by Tallis Humans have always had some fascination with rankings, some of the most popular videos and articles on the internet have dealt with comparisons and rankings. However, this doesn’t mean that it is just another useless fad, on the contrary, a well thought-out “Top 10 list”  can be very informative. For disasters,…

Iceland’s eruptions since 1900

In 1900, Iceland was a very different country. It wasn’t a country, for one thing. Although Iceland had been granted self-rule, it was still a part of Denmark and the local leaders were largely Danish-educated. There was still a Danish governor. The position (not the governor) was terminated in 1904. On Dec 1, 1918 the…

The North Anatolian Fault

There is a bit of California here. The fault equals the length of the San Andreas, its shape, its movement, and its earthquakes. Even the ends are alike: where the San Andreas has formed the Salton Sea, its counterpart has embraced the Marmara Sea. Both are places where the crust is being pulled part, and…

Seas of Hawaiʻi

Hawai’i is an amazing place. And not just for volcanologists. This is a world-on-an-island, with (apart from the most accessible eruptions in the world) Mars-sized mountains, pristine beaches, coral reefs, a world class city for shopaholics and night owls, rain forest with world-class mosquitos, desert, archaeology, astronomy, volcanoes, agriculture, flying fish and diving birds. It…

Volcano ecology

Space is a precious resource. We hoard it and guard it. Together with air, water, warmth and tomato ketchup, it is one of the essential ingredients for life. We are happy to share empathy, food, and money, but letting someone else invade our personal space is a big step well beyond that. Social distancing is…

Laki deconstructed: I. prequel

Central volcanoes of Vatnajökull With all volcanic activity seemingly on hold during the shut-down, here is a re-post from the dungeons, originally published May 29, 2013, and written by Carl. It leads into a post on Laki which we hope to put on in the next few days. After that, who knows. Perhaps something on…

A wide-angle shot of the Laacher See caldera during a thunderstorm. © Gijs de Reijke

Unrest at Laacher See: is it us or the volcano?’

[Guest article by Gijs de Reijke.] Well, the big word is out. The results of a study (‘Deep low-frequency earthquakes reveal ongoing magmatic recharge beneath Laacher See Volcano (Eifel, Germany)’, Hensch et al.) have been published on the 7th of January, pointing out the presence of magmatic movement beneath the East Eifel Volcanic Field, Germany.…

Volcanic illusions

Is this the most northerly elephant in the world? 200 meter tall and rising from the Atlantic Ocean, this Neptunic elephant lives at Heimaey Island, off the south coast of Iceland. A combination of basalt and wave erosion has left a convincing elephant head, complete with deeply wrinkled trunk. There are other elephant rocks in…

The lost volcanoes of Norway

What happens when an unstoppable force meats two unmovable objects? Well, in the world of geology there should be volcanism. A few weeks ago, I was asked by a person who did not believe in science this specific question. “If plate tectonics are real, why then are there no volcanoes in Norway?” It is a…