Experts warn of another ash volcano in Iceland

Thursday, February 10, 2011

LONDON - Scientists have warned of the eruption of yet another volcano in Iceland, more devastating than last year’s eruption which spew out blanket of dust and ash, disrupting air traffic in western and northern Europe.

Geologists detected the high risk of a new eruption after noticing an increased swarm of earthquakes around the island’s second largest volcano Bardarbunga, the Daily Mail reported.

According to Pall Einarsson, a professor of geophysics at the University of Iceland, the area around Bardarbunga is showing signs of increased activity, which provides “good reason to worry”.

In April 2010, the volcano erupted near Eyjafjallajokull, located in the south of the island, causing chaos as hundreds of planes were grounded due to dust and ash in the sky.

Einarsson told the country’s national television channel ‘RC:v’ that a low number of seismometer measuring devices in the area is making it more difficult to determine the scale and likely outcome of the current shifts.

But he said the sustained earthquake tremors to the northeast of the remote volcano range are the strongest recorded in recent times and there was “no doubt” the lava was rising.

“This is the most active areas of the country if we look at the whole country together,” he told Icelandic TV News.

“There is no doubt that lava there is slowly growing, and the seismicity of the last few days is a sign of it,” he was quoted as saying.

“We need better measurements because it is difficult to determine the depth of earthquakes because it is in the middle of the country and much of the area is covered with glaciers.”

Eruptions at the Eyjafjallajokull volcano thrust torrents of molten rock through the shattered ice sheets in the mountain crater, spewing a towering wall of ash, dust and steam high into the air.

Volcano watcher Jn Frmann, said on his blog: “After the Eyjafjallajokull volcano eruption in 2010 it seems that geologists in Iceland take earthquake swarms more seriously then they did before.”

The last recorded eruption of Bardarbunga was in 1910, although vulcanologists believe its last major eruption occurred in 1477 when it produced a huge plume of ash and pumice and the largest known lava flow during the past 10,000 years on Earth.

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