· ·

Significant ground deformation associated with earthquakes on the Reykjanes Peninsula, Iceland

ground-deformation-earthquakes-reykjanes-iceland

The Icelandic Met Office (IMO) is reporting significant ground deformation associated with a series of earthquakes that occurred on the Reykjanes Peninsula, between Fagradalsfjall and Kleifarvatn, from October 16 to 22, 2020.

The largest quake in the series was M5.6 on October 20, widely felt around the country, especially in the southern part of the peninsula and in the capital Reykjavik — some 25 km (15 miles) E of the epicenter.

IMO registered 983 earthquakes across the Peninsula from 13:43 UTC on October 20 to 08:08 UTC on October 21. Most of them had magnitudes below 1 — 529. 356 earthquakes had magnitudes between 1 and 2, 110 from 2 to 3, and 28 above 3.

"There is an active long-term process ongoing in the area and we can expect that there will be more earthquakes in the coming hours that will be felt all the way to the capital area," Kristín Jónsdóttir, Earthquake hazards coordinator at the IMO, sai in an interview with RÚV.

The large signal shown in the vicinity of Skolahraun represents the movement of up to 5 cm (1.9 inches) — in the satellite's line-of-sight — associated with the M5.6 earthquake.

Additional deformation is observed in the vicinity of Driffell and east of Keilir, related to movement on faults in this region.

Multiple fractures, related to these earthquakes, have been observed on the ground in this area.

The pattern of surface deformation resulting from the M5.6 earthquake last week is quite visible, along with additional fault movements to the northeast. Credit: IMO

Image credit: IMO

According to IMO, these earthquakes are related to the volcano-tectonic reactivation of the Reykjanes Peninsula which started in December 2019. The unrest is ongoing and the occurrence of additional future earthquakes is considered likely, IMO said.

The Aviation Color Code for Reykjanes has been raised to Yellow in January 2020.

On January 26, IMO noted:

Inflation has been detected since January 21 and is centered just west of Mt. Thorbjorn. The inflation is unusually rapid, around 3 – 4 mm (0.11 – 0.15 inches) per day and has accumulated to 2 cm (0.78 inches) to date. … The inflation is most likely a sign of magma accumulation at a depth of just a few km. … Accurate measurements of crustal deformation on the Reykjanes peninsula span approximately three decades. During this period no comparable signal has been measured. This is unusual for this period. … The inflation is occurring on plate boundaries and within the volcanic system of Svartsengi which is either considered a separate system or part of the Reykjanes volcanic system. The last known eruption was during Reykjanes fires, which occurred between 1210 – 1240 AD.

Featured image credit: IMO

If you value what we do here, create your ad-free account and support our journalism.

Share:


Your support makes a difference

Dear valued reader,

We hope that our website has been a valuable resource for you.

The reality is that it takes a lot of time, effort, and resources to maintain and grow this website. We rely on the support of readers like you to keep providing high-quality content.

If you have found our website to be helpful, please consider making a contribution to help us continue to bring you the information you need. Your support means the world to us and helps us to keep doing what we love.

Support us by choosing your support level – Silver, Gold or Platinum. Other support options include Patreon pledges and sending us a one-off payment using PayPal.

Thank you for your consideration. Your support is greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,
Teo Blašković

$5 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Clean user interface and fast browsing
  • Direct communication with us via chat and email
  • Suggest new features, content and applications
  • Early access to new apps and features

$50 /year

$10 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Clean user interface and fast browsing
  • Direct communication with us via chat and email
  • Suggest new features, content and applications
  • Early access to new apps and features

$100 /year

$25 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Clean user interface and fast browsing
  • Direct communication with us via chat and email
  • Suggest new features, content and applications
  • Early access to new apps and features

$200 /year

You can also support us on Patreon

support us on patreon

or by sending us a one-off payment using PayPal:


Commenting rules and guidelines

We value the thoughts and opinions of our readers and welcome healthy discussions on our website. In order to maintain a respectful and positive community, we ask that all commenters follow these rules:

  • Treat others with kindness and respect.
  • Stay on topic and contribute to the conversation in a meaningful way.
  • Do not use abusive or hateful language.
  • Do not spam or promote unrelated products or services.
  • Do not post any personal information or content that is illegal, obscene, or otherwise inappropriate.

We reserve the right to remove any comments that violate these rules. By commenting on our website, you agree to abide by these guidelines. Thank you for helping to create a positive and welcoming environment for all.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *