Smoke Plume from Litli-Hrútur Volcano 

by | Jul 31, 2023

On July 10, 2023, a volcano some 30 kilometers from Iceland’s capital, Reykjavik, erupted following heightened seismic activity in the area. Satellites orbiting above captured the molten lava and smoke plume puffing from the Litli-Hrútur volcano. 

Litli-Hrútur, which translates to ‘Little Ram,’ is part of the Fagradalsfjall volcanic area in southwest Iceland. After around 800 years of silence, the volcanic area burst into life in March 2021 with an eruption in the Geldingadalur valley followed by a smaller eruption in the nearby Meradalur valley in August 2022. 

Almost one year later, a new eruption began at Litli-Hrútur mountain. In the week leading up to the eruption, thousands of small earthquakes had been recorded in the area, the largest of which was a magnitude 4.8 quake, according to the Icelandic Met Office. 

Image Credit: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023), processed by ESA