Life at UCB through the eyes of our student bloggers

Fagradalsfjall is lighting up Iceland!

Fagradalsfjall is lighting up Iceland!

Hello again!

I guess you have probably heard of the volcano which is erupting right now in Iceland?! Isn’t it crazy to think there’s lava spewing into the air while you read this?

In Iceland, there are roughly 130 volcanos and about 30 of them are active! The last eruption of Fagradalsfjall was about 800 years ago! Tourists have been flooding the area to see the beautiful sight… would you do this too if you had the opportunity? Or would you stand well away from it thinking it’s a little bit risky to get so close? Apparently, a lady living in Grindavik (about 5 miles away) can see the glowing red sky out of her window! It must be very beautiful!

According to BBC News, Iceland has recorded more than 50,000 earthquakes in the past 3 weeks! This is often an indicator that a volcanic eruption is about to happen due to the tectonic plates moving. It makes me wonder if the locals ever get worried or scared!

Iceland volcano eruption: Latest pictures and updates on travel as no-fly zone established | World | News |

Do you remember the Icelandic volcanic eruption in 2010?

In 2010, a volcano called Eyjafjallajökull erupted in Iceland and while the eruption was fairly small, the impact it had on Europe was ENORMOUS, forcing flights to be grounded for several weeks due to the volcanic ash cloud spreading across Europe.

When this happened, I was in Mallorca for the Easter holidays. I remember being stuck there for weeks and while this was GREAT to relax a bit more in the sun, it was rather stressful having to travel to the airport every day to check if any flights were leaving that day. The airline staff kept booking us on new flights and they kept getting cancelled. The reason it was so dangerous for aircraft to fly was that the volcanic ash cloud contained large particles of volcanic rock which were really hard to detect as they weren’t showing up on radar. As well as this, the ash cloud was electrically conductive meaning it was very likely to cause thunder and lightning storms.

Apparently, airlines lost around £130 million per day due to aircraft being grounded and in order to get them operating again, the National Centre for Atmospheric Science were asked to work with the Civil Aviation Authority to map out the path of the volcanic ash cloud. When we finally arrived in the UK, there was so much ash everywhere it looked like lovely fluffy clouds had fallen from the sky… but we had to be careful not to breathe this in! It is quite bad for your lungs… which made it even riskier for people who already suffer from lung/respiratory problems.

Eyjafjallajökull: The Volcano That Caused an Eruption in Icelandic Tourism

Could the eruption of Fagradalsfjall mark the start of decades of activity?

The Icelandic Meteorological Office has predicted that the volcano could continue erupting for 100 years! Or that new eruptions may occur around the current eruption. This would be a wonderful tourist attraction and a great event to study regarding the geology of the area.

Would you like to visit the erupting volcano? Professionals have said that the trek to see the volcano is as safe as can be. If you do go to visit, there will be hard, molten rock which is lava that has solidified. It can be sharp enough to cut through your shoes (so be careful – don’t venture further than recommended) and some of it has been there for 7,000 years! You can also watch a livestream video of the volcano here!

Photographer Sends Drone Over Erupting Volcano, Video Captures Incredible Moment of Lava Spitting Out

Thanks for reading!

Charley x