Sunday, 22 May 2011


This photo by Snæbjörn Guðbjörnsson was lifted via Google images from This Site

It just so happens I have the next few days off, and I appear to have been volunteered by PRGeek as the go-to blog for information on the latest volcanic eruption in Iceland. Seeing as I got a week off work last year while half an Icelandic Mountain was floating above us, this blog is the least I can do.

I'm not entirely sure what's happening at the moment, but it's early days. It appears that Grimsvotn is larger and more powerful than Eyyafyallayokull, and is also under a Glacier. It was the glacial ice falling into the magma that sent the plumes of ash into the sky last year. But the magma is a different consistency or temperature (or something- I haven't looked hard at the geology), so the ash particles are not as fine and not staying suspended in the air for as long as last year. The weather system is also currently very different, with higher winds and more likelihood of rain which will wash the particles out of the air.

The upshot is that the ash cloud this year is likely to effect air traffic much less than last year. I suspect that there is also political pressure on the regulatory body that will prevent all out closure across Europe.

What people are after though is up to date information on what's happening, so to help with that, here are some useful links, and some people and hashtags to follow on twitter.





Twitter hashtags to look for are:

For news from the European Air Traffic Control Centre, Eurocontrol, look Here

And the latest news from the UK Met Office is Here
And for charts giving the shape of the ash cloud look Here

A great blog from @hjortur : Important informaiton: How Will The Grimsvotn Eruption Affect Air Traffic? Here

And another from @eruptionsblog with information about the Composition of the ash.

The latest Update I saw was that the ash plume is at 15-17km height, and the winds are winds N to NW, (ie blowing vaguely towards Scotland) and Keflavik airport is closed. No Airspace closures are expected in Europe today or tomorrow except in Iceland.

I will try to add to the list and update information as the week goes on, but also check the twitter list that I have just set up:

- Blogged from my iPad