Hazards related to the Icelandic Bárðarbunga volcano
As reported gismeteo.ruin late October, the Icelandic volcanic system Bardarbunga rocked four strong earthquakes. The aftershocks of a magnitude of 3.9 and 3.2, 4.7 and 4.7 — sign that a magma chamber of the volcano accumulated pressure. This will eventually lead to an eruption, but it is difficult to say when it will occur and how strong it will be.
The volcano can be very dangerous if it explodes, as it is located under the largest ice cap in Europe, Vatnajökull. Volcanoes which explode beneath the ice, are extremely explosive and produce a lot of fine ash. When the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajökull began to erupt in 2010, its ash cloud caused damage to the air travel around the world.
Earthquakes occur when energy waves move through solid matter. But this does not necessarily mean that the volcano will explode immediately.
Bárðarbunga reaches a height of 2000 meters above sea level and is located in Vatnajokull national Park. This is one of the largest and most active volcanoes of the island.
Although due to the remote location of the volcano seems to be harmless, the eruption can have an effect outside of Iceland. The last eruption of Bardarbunga, which began in August 2014 and ended in February 2015, was the largest that the country has experienced in 200 years. The ashes were then spread throughout Europe.
The inevitable eruption it may take on different scenarios depending on where to begin. One third of the volcanic system is covered with ice, and the eruption under the ice can cause explosions, transforming huge volumes of ice to vapor. When magma comes into contact with steam, it explodes and it shoots fine particles high into the atmosphere.
Or lava from the eruption can melt the ice and cause flooding. It happened during the eruption Eyjafjallajokull.
When the eruption happens? Scientists say it’s the million dollar question. Meteorological service of Iceland will monitor the situation. According to the Catalogue of Icelandic volcanoes, Bardarbunga system explodes every 50 years. The last eruption began in 2014.
Bardarbunga is not the only volcano lurking under the ice. Paul Einarsson, a geophysicist from the University of Iceland announced in February 2017 4 of volcano island show increased activity and preparing for the eruption. The other three — Katla, Hekla and Grimsvotn. The most dangerous is Katla.
As a state, which is located on the Mid-Atlantic ridge, Iceland is well familiar with the volcanoes. When, in 1973, began to erupt, Eldfell, the country evacuated 5 thousand people in one day. The eruption lasted for 6 months and in the end most of the residents returned home.