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Iceland Mag

Geology

Volcano Katla also trembled yesterday: Largest quake in the monster volcano since 1977

By Staff

  • Mýrdalsjökull glacier Katla is located beneath the glacier. An eruption in Katla is believed to pose even greater dangers to aviation than the 2010 eruption in nearby Eyjafjallajökull glacier. Photo/GVA

Katla, one of Iceland‘s most powerful volcanoes joined Reykjanes peninsula yesterday with its own intense earthquake swarm. The largest quake in this swarm was a powerful 4.5 magnitude quake at 22:18, immediately preceded by a second 3.2 magnitude quake. 

Quakes in Mýrdalsjökull

Quakes in Mýrdalsjökull The activity in Katla in the past 48 hours. Photo/Icelandic Met Office

A total of 38 quakes were detected in the caldera of Katla since esterday afternoon. Only two of the quakes were larger than magnitude 3. Both of those quakes were felt in many places in South Iceland.

Read more: Earthquake swarm on Reykjanes peninsula seems to be slowing down: 338 quakes since yesterday morning

Katla, which is hidden beneath Mýrdalsjökull glacier in South Iceland is believed to be long overdue for an eruption. The volcano has shown increasing signs of activity in the past few years, following the 2010 eruption in Eyjafjallajökull.

A professor of geophysics at the University of Iceland told the local news site Vísir that the quake in Katla was unusually large, the largest quake in Katla since 1977.

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