New Iceland Volcano Shows Signs of Activity

Hekla erupts every decade or so, and she's overdue

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Jul 6, 2011 8:57 AM CDT

(Newser) – Scientists are monitoring unusual underground activity that could signal an eruption at the Hekla volcano in southern Iceland. Magma appears to be moving deep beneath the volcano, and while that doesn't necessarily mean an eruption is imminent, scientists expect Hekla, one of Iceland's most active volcanoes, to erupt soon. In the past few decades, Hekla has erupted about every 10 years, most recently in February 2000.

Iceland, in the remote North Atlantic, is a volcanic hotspot. In April 2010 ash from an eruption of its Eyjafjallajokul volcano grounded flights across Europe for days, disrupting travel for 10 million people. In May, the Grimsvotn volcano erupted, causing minor disruption to air travel.

A plume smoke is seen rising from the Grimsvotn volcano in Iceland Wednesday May 25 2011.
A plume smoke is seen rising from the Grimsvotn volcano in Iceland Wednesday May 25 2011.   (AP Photo/Agust Gudbjornsson)
In this image from television a plume is seen rising from the Grimsvotn volcano in Iceland Wednesday May 25 2011.
In this image from television a plume is seen rising from the Grimsvotn volcano in Iceland Wednesday May 25 2011.   (AP Photo/ RUV Iceland via APTN)
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