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Iceland's Fagradalsfjall Fires

bjdeming

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Cams:

RUV had stopped all cams except Sylingafell South --



-- but, not surprisingly, they have begun live streaming from Thorbjorn again:






There are also several mbl.is cams streaming, including one of the earlier eruption sites -- Litli-Hrutur -- so that's still a possibility, too.
 

bjdeming

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Still quiet, just people stuff (though some folks in the Twitterverse are sharing images of Northern Lights taken tonight with one of the mbl.is cameras).

People stuff: Thor had everyone's back when they went in Sunday to get some pets and belongings. Freyja is nearby. (Source, autotranslated) ♥️
 

bjdeming

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This footage appeared on the Icelandic Volcanoes Twitter feed about five hours ago:



The opinion among those tweeters is that it is a SLC -- "scary-looking crack," my term used in homage to Mr. Spann :) -- and that the steam coming out of it is just that: steam from a broken geothermal water main.
 
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bjdeming

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Icelandic Met Office shared (autotranslated) the really scary images this morning, first, the dike:

bylgjuvixlm-13-nov-michelle.png



I don't have the training to comment on that, but I think that's a very concerning image.

Second, the real subsidence (something that Google translated as "sinkhole" yesterday but is really on a much larger scale -- the blue/purple area on this image (and it includes much of Grindavik) has sunk by as much as 1 m:

blar-litur-vi-13-nov-isl-vincent.png
 

bjdeming

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They let more residents in today to get what they could, and some more images of damage are online (everybody is almost done leaving town after this visit, as of this time, per mbl.is, and very few animals are left):



Heartbreaking. At least tornadoes and hurricanes don't directly undermine you.

Incredibly, the wait goes on. Be sure to check out the IMO link above and the media links in the first post of this thread; there is too much to cover here.
 

bjdeming

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Shared about an hour ago -- no big reveals (they apparently found their place in pretty good shape, fortunately) but it's the nightmarish drive in after quakes have hit your town, it has become world news, and you know there is magma not far underground now.

 

bjdeming

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Latest IMO update at 1620 local time (autotranslating link added):

Updated 13. November at 16:20 UTC


Seismicity along the magma intrusion continues, although the size and intensity of the activity is decreasing. Since midnight today, 13 November, around 900 earthquakes have been detected. Theseismic activity is concentrated on the region of the intrusion, between Sundhnúkur and Grindavík at a depth of about 2–5 km.

Decreasing rates of ground deformation are seen in GPS data from Grindavík...



Ahem. (I get around it by saying "the hills that include Thornbjorn and Sylingafell.")

The news that deformation is slowly decreasing would be good news at most volcanoes, but not here -- as these two papers show (h/t).

Still, at the moment there are no major changes noted. IMO did report earlier today that total magma intrusion volume is estimated to be 0.07 cubic kilometer, but this layperson would not expect it all to erupt at once. Still, eruptions are fed from below, and as they say, if it comes, it could be larger than Holuhraun (1.2 cubic kilometers).
 

bjdeming

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Two bright smoking lights near power plant, ? if this is it. Looks like something orange has appeared on far side, yoo.

I understand that the plant has been operated remotely since the weekend, but there is still a little traffic on that road.


 

bjdeming

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The steam is dropping. They're shutting down the plant.

Edit: I don't know. Just saw what looked like a security car driving in the plant, slowly. The plant lights are still on, no word on the online news sources.

Flashing red light just went by the cam, though, and those two new lights are unusually bright, while the one in the distance is orange, and getting brighter. Suspect this is it and people are reacting.

Now the plant spotlights are coming in and they resemble the two bright lights in front.

If this is it, it's that distant orange light.
 
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bjdeming

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Yeah, this layperson is sure it's lava incandescence back there. They turned up the plant lights because people are doing stuff between the plant and the road (and probably elsewhere, too). They shut off the steam so they can see the distant eruption better.
 
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bjdeming

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It was probably around the time of that M1 at a depth of only 0.3 km:

screenshot_20231113-185707_firefox.jpg



IMO has said that there likely wouldn't be much seismicity precursor with all the tension released by Friday's big swarm.

It seems to be quite far from the plant (but still in the original area of concern). It's likely fountaining some, which should increase as the fissure grows.

I don't think there are settlements nearby but ? what else might be out there.
 
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bjdeming

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Just to review in my own head:

  • The mbl.is cam suddenly zoomed on the plant.
  • I checked it and saw two new bright lights in front of the plant, at a location where (I can see now) the steam wisps out, making it look as though the lights were smoking.
  • Shortly after that, I noticed the distant orange light suddenly appear (it's now growing slowly, steadily).
  • Then the plant spotlights came on and the reality sunk in.

They must have had some indication just before it broke through, as the zoom and first bright lights show.

Well, I'm glad it's not in Grindavik, but that town is downstream from here.
 

bjdeming

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Thank you for the likes, but I don't think the eruption has happened yet. There would be news by now, and there isn't.

Also, nothing shows on this cam collection (Live From Iceland doesn't allow embedding, but it's live on YouTube, with same-angle view of the power plant and no orange spot):



Sorry to get everyone excited. What I saw was definitely what one might see in an eruption, but there must be some other explanation for it.

I'll try to track that own on this end. In the meantime, it's still a waiting game in Iceland, folks.
 

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"Everyone has to leave Grindavík​

For safety reasons, Grindavík is being evacuated after the Met Office's gas meters showed an increased SO2 value. This is not an emergency evacuation and the town will be evacuated in an orderly manner."
 

bjdeming

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IMO released an update (autotranslated) about that SO2 detection about an hour and a half ago.

Otherwise, reports show the situation relatively unchanged. Here's a good autotranslated article.

There is a scandal: an RUV reporter was caught trying to enter one of the evacuated houses.

I suspect it was a situation like the one at Japan's Unzen in 1991 -- journalists, firemen, and police were among those killed by that unexpected pyroclastic surge, in addition to the three volcanologists. The police and fire department were reportedly there to keep an eye on the journalists, who allegedly had been entering evacuated homes to use the power -- and some relatives of those security personnel are still ticked off enough to mention it at commemoration ceremonies, which is how I heard of it via Japan Times.
 

bjdeming

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Ha! Per RUV just now (though I saw it on a different cam last night):

working light in the west of Grindavík raises questions - Eruption not the sea​

fri_20231114_221525111

Many of those who have watched the live stream on RÚV's webcam of Þorbirn were startled by the bright lights under the mast west of Grindavík.
The newsroom has received several inquiries about whether a gas crack has opened there, but it is not, nor is it a working light [think this is a mistranslation, given headline]. This is confirmed by a natural disaster expert at the Icelandic Meteorological Office.

So -- not crazy, just overthinking.

It might be from the lava barrier work that has been approved to protect the plant and (according to drawings I saw) the Blue Lagoon.



Yeah, if I was an Icelander, I would have called IMO, too.

Meanwhile, no changes overall.
 
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