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Watch an Icelandic volcano erupt below northern lights

An unforgettable duo along Iceland’s southwest coast put on a spectacle for lovers of natural wonders this week: As lava gushed from the Earth, the Northern Lights twisted overhead.

Sundhnukagigar, the volcano responsible, has erupted four times since December. It has since caused multiple evacuations and razed several homes in the nearby fishing town of Grindavik, destroying some access routes but largely missing critical infrastructure.

The volcano, located about 30 miles southwest of Iceland’s capital Reykjavik, is on the Reykjanes Peninsula, in an area that had not been active for 800 years before the recent eruptions.

Small earthquakes and incessant but slow lava flows have been at the heart of the entire series of events, including in recent days. The eruption is considered stable by the Icelandic Met Office, although increased pressure and ground heaving have been noted again recently amid generally reduced lava flow in recent weeks. This could suggest that magma is once again filling the chambers below the vents on the surface.

In the current episode, Sundhnukagigar has been erupting for four weeks. It is the second longest eruption in recent years on the island, behind six months with the eruption of Fagradalsfjall in 2021, according to the Associated Press.

The auroras were enhanced by a minor to moderate geomagnetic storm. Alerts have been issued by the U.S. Space Weather Prediction Center for high-latitude locations in the hemisphere on Tuesday. Even without a major storm, Iceland’s position in the north of the globe makes it one of the hotspots for viewing the Northern Lights.

Before dawn on Tuesday, parts of the Pacific Northwest also witnessed bright auroras. Similar locations often require major geomagnetic storms to see the Northern Lights.

The sun is in its most active phase in decades, increasing the potential for space weather that could trigger spectacular mid-latitude northern lights as well as other geomagnetic disturbances.

News Source :
Gn world

jack colman

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