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Report on Krysuvik-Trolladyngja (Iceland) — 24 March-30 March 2021


Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
24 March-30 March 2021
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2021. Report on Krysuvik-Trolladyngja (Iceland). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 24 March-30 March 2021. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Weekly Report (24 March-30 March 2021)



63.917°N, 22.067°W; summit elev. 360 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

IMO reported that the small eruption in the W part of the Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcanic system, close to Fagradalsfjall on the Reykjanes Peninsula continued during 24-30 March. Video and visitor photographs showed that continuous spattering and lava fountaining resulted in the formation of a second large cone adjacent to the main cone. Lava flows from both cones moved W and S within Geldingadalur valley. On 25 and 29 March the extrusion rate from the cone was an estimated 5.8 and 5.3 cubic meters per second, respectively, based on the latest Pléiades image acquisition (LMI).

A gas plume on 25 and 29 March rose to 1 km (3,300 ft) a.s.l; no ash or tephra was produced. Minor seismicity continued around the Fagradalsfjall area. Video data showed that on the morning of 28 March the N part of the largest cone along the fissure collapsed. Sulfur dioxide flux was 18-19 kg/s and drifted predominantly S. The IMO periodically issued warnings about weather conditions that would cause high concentrations of volcanic gases to settle near the eruption site, causing hazardous conditions for visitors. The Aviation Color Code remained Orange due to the lack of ash and tephra emissions.

Geological Summary. The Krýsuvík-Trölladyngja volcanic system is described by the Catalogue of Icelandic Volcanoes as an approximately 50-km-long composite fissure swarm trending about N38°E, including a 30-km-long swarm of fissures, with no central volcano. It is one of the volcanic systems arranged en-echelon along the Reykjanes Peninsula west of Kleifarvatn lake. The Fagradalsfjall and Krýsuvík fissure swarms are considered splits or secondary swarms of the Krýsuvík–Trölladyngja volcanic system. Small shield volcanoes have produced a large portion of the erupted volume within the system. Several eruptions have taken place since the settlement of Iceland, including the eruption of a large basaltic lava flow from the Ogmundargigar crater row around the 12th century. The latest eruption, identified through tephrochronology, took place during the 14th century.

Sources: Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO), Icelandic National Broadcasting Service (RUV)