Lava will begin flowing out of Meradalir valley in two to three weeks if the ongoing eruption on Iceland’s Reykjanes peninsula continues at the same pace, RÚV reports. A new vent opened at the edge of the eruption’s active crater today, and both are now spouting lava from the same source. Volcanic tremors at the site began increasing around 3:00 AM this morning, continuing the eruption’s fluctuating pattern of activity.
Preceded by weeks of strong earthquakes, the Fagradalsfjall eruption began on March 19 of this year. It has been ongoing for nearly five months now, during which lava flow has been relatively small but steady. Volcanologists Þorvaldur Þórðarson and Ármann Höskuldsson were at the eruption site yesterday taking measurements. Ármann stated that he has never seen an eruption like this in Iceland.
“It’s a completely unique eruption that just calmly rises to the surface and nothing seems to affect it. It just takes over the land as it pleases.” Various types of lava can be seen at the site, including smooth pāhoehoe lava as well as rough, jagged ʻaʻā lava (both terms originate in the Hawaiian language).
The Icelandic Institute of Natural History just released a 3D model of the eruption site using pictures taken yesterday. Interested readers can also watch a live feed of the eruption – the crater could be seen bubbling actively at the time of writing.