23 May 2011
A year on from the Eyjafjallajökull volcano eruption, another Icelandic volcano has erupted.
The Grímsvötn volcano in southeast Iceland started to erupt on 21 May 2011. The volcano is spewing out a plume of volcanic ash, which has reached as high as 17km. The eruption was preceded by an increase in seismic activity.
Dr Susan Loughlin, Head of Volcanology at the British Geological Survey (BGS), said, "The Grímsvötn volcano is currently emitting a plume of volcanic ash that is being monitored by the Icelandic Meteorological Office. Grímsvötn is the most active volcano in Iceland and is covered by an ice cap, similar to the Eyjafjallajökull volcano which erupted in April 2010. However, unlike that eruption, the Grímsvötn volcanic ash is likely to be coarser and fall out closer to the volcano."
The seismic activity and ash plume are being monitored by the Icelandic Meteorological Office. The London Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre, which is run by the UK Met Office, is issuing regular forecasts of the ash plume location .
Current reports suggest that ash could reach Scotland and parts of Northern Europe later today. The joint NERC and Met Office atmospheric research aircraft is currently on standby, ready to fly if tests are needed. Other European research aircraft are also standing by, so as to enable a coordinated research effort if required.
The ash fall from Grímsvötn is visible from a web cam at Jökulsárlón .
NERC Press Office
Natural Environment Research Council
Polaris House, North Star Avenue
Swindon, SN2 1EU
Tel: 01793 411561
Mob: 07917 557215
Press release: 13/11
Recent press news
- NERC invests in scheme to solve business problems using environmental data
- Science Budget allocations 2015-16
- NERC signs MoU with multinational energy company Shell
- NERC invests £4.6 million in Big Data
- Research on the effects of storm surges on sand dunes to aid coastal management
- Entrepreneurial scientists scoop prize money at competition finals
- NERC announces the winner of its first photo and essay competition
- NERC supports growth with responsible environmental management in energy sector
- Better modelling of tsunami zones could help insurance quotes
- NERC signs MoU with global engineering consultancy Arup