Iceland Eruption, Shows No Signs of Stopping, it is the most extensive eruption by area covered



Credit: University of Iceland/Ármann Höskuldsson

Update 9/11/14: This article has been amended to clarify that this is the most extensive eruption by area covered, not necessarily lava volume.

The most extensive lava eruption for over a century is currently underway in central Iceland.

Since August 31, liquid rock has been streaming from a mile-long fissure northeast of Bardarbunga, the country’s second highest volcano. Ármann Höskuldsson, a volcanologist from the University of Iceland, says that the fissure has now spewed more lava, by area, than any Icelandic eruption since the 19th century. The university’s most recent estimate puts the amount of lava at nearly eight square miles — enough to cover a quarter of the island of Manhattan.

The fissure has been erupting regularly and vigorously since it opened, shooting lava fountains more than 300ft into the air; the associated lava flows stretch for up to seven miles.



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