Volcanic eruptions such as the one in Eyjafjalljökull in south Iceland in early 2010 would cause fewer disturbances to flight schedules today than it did at the time, according to director of the Icelandic Civil Aviation Administration (CAA) Pétur K. Maack.
The ash cloud from Eyjafjallajökull. Photo by Bjarni Brynjólfsson.
This is due to increased knowledge, better surveillance and more accurate forecast models and the experience drawn from the ash cloud emitted during the volcanic eruption in Grímsvötn the following year, Pétur told Morgunblaðið.
Work is being done to equip Icelandic airplanes with certified ash monitors, especially on routes to and from Keflavík International Airport.
“It is vital for aviation in Iceland, in such close proximity to volcanoes, to know exactly how much ash there is in the stratosphere and where,” Pétur said.
Icelandair has taken initiative in this development in collaboration with the CAA and ISAVIA. The Icelandic Meteorological Office has also collaborated with the International Civil Aviation Organization on these matters.
The Meteorological Office is about to acquire new weather scopes, both stationary and mobile, in order to monitor ash clouds more closely. Additionally, the quality of satellite photos that are used for such purposes have improved considerably.
Click here to read more about the Eyjafjallajökull ash cloud.