Iceland Mag

3 Reykjavik

Iceland Mag


3.8 magnitude earthquake in Bárðarbunga volcano

By Staff

  • Bárðarbunga caldera The center of the Bárðarbunga system is located beneath Vatnajökull glacier. Photo/Icelandic Meteorological Office

A powerful 3.8 magnitude earthquake was detected at the Bárðarbunga caldera at 10 minutes past 10 this morning. The quake was picked up by the seismic monitoring system of the Icelandic Meteorological Office. Bárðarbunga is the most powerful volcanic system in Iceland, located beneath Vatnajökull glacier.

The epicenter of the quake was in the South Eastern rim of the caldera, close to the surface, at a depth of only 100 m (330 ft). No other tremors have been detected in the Bárðarbunga caldera. However, a large earthquake swarm has shaken the northern end of the Bárðarbunga system, south-west of the mountain Herðubreið.

Read more: All of Iceland‘s major volcanoes showing unusually high levels of activity

The last eruption in the system took place in 2014-2015, in the Holuhraun lava field to the north of Vatnajökull glacier. The Bárðarbunga caldera is located beneath the north-western corner of the glacier. Holuhraun is located roughly midway between today's earthquake swarm at Herðubreið and the Bárðarbunga caldera, where the 3.8 magnitude quake was detected at 10:10 am.  

Bárðarbunga has been very active in the past few months. The IMO continues to monitor its activity closely, but stresses that there are no signs of immediate volcanic activity. 

Earthquakes 16.3.17

Seismic activity in the last 48 hours The 3.8 magnitude quake is marked with a star. Photo/IMO


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