In The Last Days Shall The Sun be Darkened

Mat 24:29
Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
Mat 24:30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

Ash plumes from Iceland's Eyjafjallajokull volcano.

LONDON - A second, much larger volcano in Iceland is showing signs that it may be about to erupt, scientists have warned.

Since the start of the Eyjafjallajökull eruption, which caused cancellations of thousands of flights in Europe because of a giant ash cloud, there has been much speculation about neighboring Katla.
An initial research paper by the University College of London Institute for Risk and Disaster Reduction said: "Analysis of the seismic energy released around Katla over the last decade or so is interpreted as providing evidence of a rising ... intrusive magma body on the western flank of the volcano."
"Earlier seismic energy release at Katla is associated with the inflation of the volcano, which indicates it is close to failure, although this does not appear to be linked to seismicity around Eyjafjallajökull," it added.
"We conclude that given the high frequency of Katla activity, an eruption in the short term is a strong possibility," the report said. "It is likely to be preceded by new earthquake activity. Presently there is no unusual seismicity under Katla."
Icelandic President Ólafur Grímsson has warned governments around Europe that a significant eruption at the volcano is close. "We [Iceland] have prepared ... it is high time for European governments and airline authorities all over Europe and the world to start planning for the eventual Katla eruption," he said.
The UCL scientists, engineers and statisticians also criticized the response to the earlier eruption.
"The impact of the eruption on regional airspace could have been predicted and better prepared for as the growing problem of aircraft-ash cloud encounters has been recognized for decades," the report added.
"Similarly, the potential for ash clouds, specifically from Icelandic volcanoes, to interfere with air traffic in UK, European and North Atlantic air-space was appreciated by the aviation industry well before the start of the Eyjafjallajökull eruption," it said.
"The response to the ash cloud’s arrival in UK and adjacent airspace was entirely reactive and therefore less effective than it should have been."

Larger Iceland Volcano, Katla, Shows Signs of Potential Eruption

Volcanic activity at Katla, the big sister of Eyjafjallajokull which has historically erupted in sequence with the smaller volcano, has increased 200% in recent days, and experts are concerned it may soon blow:

"A report from the University College London (UCL) institute for risk and disaster reduction has outlined that "An eruption in the short term is a strong possibility'. In its initial research paper it said: 'Analysis of the seismic energy released around Katla over the last decade or so is interpreted as providing evidence of a rising ... intrusive magma body on the western flank of the volcano.' Seismic readings of the volcano indicate the tremors around the area have increased substantially. Four earthquakes were detected near Katla during a 12-hour period on May 21st, more than at any other time since the Eyjafjallajokull volcanic eruptions first occurred in March. Three earthquakes at the Katla Volcano were reported by the Disaster and Emergency website on Sunday evening. The tremors may have been due to ice movements within Mýrdalsjökull glacier or magma movement under the volcano. The last earthquake to take place at the volcano was recorded yesterday morning."
Warning signs have been posted near the base of the glacier which caps the Katla volcano (top) Inset (above), the last major Katla eruption, in 1918.

Katla is the second largest volcano in the country of Iceland, and Iceland's president is issuing a warning saying that the eruption of Katla is close.
Icelandic president Ólafur Grímsson has warned other governments around Europe "that a significant eruption at the volcano is close."
"We [Iceland] have prepared ... it is high time for European governments and airline authorities all over Europe and the world to start planning for the eventual Katla eruption," he said.
Europe is still experiencing clouds of volcanic ash from Eyjafjallajokull that erupted in April.
Airlines all over the world have lost significant flight time and money due to flights being cancelled as a result of the ash clouds. An eruption of Katla, the second largest volcano is Iceland, could spell even more trouble. There has been speculation about Katla since the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull. Katla is the larger of the two volcanos.
The planet appears to be in a perpetual state of unrest. From today's 7.2 magnitude earthquake in Vanuatu to the pending eruption of Katla in Iceland; it seems like Mother Nature is kicking up her well worn heels.

Katla volcano, located near the southern end of Iceland's eastern volcanic zone, is hidden beneath the Myrdalsjökull icecap. The subglacial basaltic-to-rhyolitic volcano is one of Iceland's most active and is a frequent producer of damaging jökulhlaups, or glacier-outburst floods. A large 10 x 14 km subglacial caldera with a long axis in a NW-SE direction is up to 750 m deep. Its high point reaches 1380 m, and three major outlet glaciers have breached its rim. Although most historical eruptions have taken place from fissures inside the caldera, the Eldgjá fissure system, which extends about 60 km to the NE from the current ice margin towards Grímsvötn volcano, has been the source of major Holocene eruptions. An eruption from the Eldgjá fissure system about 934 AD produced a voluminous lava flow of about 18 cu km, one of the world's largest known Holocene lava flows. Katla has been the source of frequent subglacial basaltic explosive eruptions that have been among the largest tephra-producers in Iceland during historical time and has also produced numerous dacitic explosive eruptions during the Holocene.


When Iceland’s Katla volcano erupts next, could it be 100 times as powerful as the recent Eyjafjallajokull eruption?

Maybe, yes. Hopefully not. Probably not, but, let me explain…

The current thinking and assumption is that Katla will possibly be as powerful as ten times that of the recent eruption of Eyjafjallajokull, which is a reasonable expectation given the fact that the 1918 Katla eruption was indeed almost ten times as powerful as Eyjafjallajokull.

Volcano explosiveness is ranked on a scale from 0 to 8 (Volcanic Explosivity Index – VEI), and each increase in number represents a ten times increase in explosiveness (logarithmic scale). The total volume of ejected material also known as ‘tephra‘ (the fragmental material, regardless of size, produced by volcanic eruption), as well as plume height are the most important criteria factored in to VEI.

The recent Eyjafjallajokull volcano eruption in Iceland was ranked on the low end of VEI 4 and released about 140 Million cubic meters of material , of which about 80 Million cubic meters went into the atmosphere by way of the ash plume. It affected aviation in the region for weeks, translating to global transportation issues of both human and cargo, and had a measurable negative economic impact.

Imagining the impact of a Katla eruption on a scale of ten times worse than Eyjafjallajokull is bad enough, but when considering an impact of one hundred times worse, one begins to cringe…

VEI 4 (ejects .1 – 1 Billion cubic meters of tephra, plume height 10 – 25 km)

VEI 5 (ejects 1 – 10 Billion cubic meters of tephra, plume height >25 km)

VEI 6 (ejects 10 – 100 Billion cubic meters of tephra, plume height >25 km)

The 1918 Katla eruption has been ranked VEI 4+ and VEI 5, ejected 700 Million cubic meters of material, was about ten times the explosive power as Eyjafjallajokull, and nearly comparable with the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens.

The fact is, the magma chamber beneath Katla is large enough to produce a VEI 6 eruption. The chamber has a volume of about 10 Billion cubic meters and the caldera has an area of about 42 square miles (108 square kilometers). The total volume within the magma chamber, if completely filled and ejected, could touch the bottom range of a VEI 6.

When Katla erupted in 934 AD, it produced one of the world’s largest known lava flows which amounted to 18 Billion cubic meters while also ejecting 5 Billion cubic meters of tephra. This put it solidly within VEI 5 and would certainly have been VEI 6 if some of the enormous amount of lava had ejected as tephra instead.

History often repeats itself

Whether Katla goes off as a VEI 4+, 5, or 6, it will have a significant impact on today’s world. Regardless of the scale, air travel will be severely impacted, particularly in Europe, which will ripple down through the economies of the world. Localities in the path of the ash plume will likely endure regional crop and livestock failure from ash fallout, as well as the threat of poisoning from inhalation.

History favors a probable VEI 4+, maybe VEI 5 type of event, however a VEI 6 worst case scenario will bring significant devastation in that it will be much wider spread. It will surely have a global impact as temperatures could drop enough to cause wide spread crop failures while our weather is effected from such a large volume of ash ejected into the stratosphere. Having said that, even a VEI 5 could also cause a world wide temperature drop depending on which end of the VEI ‘5′ scale.

Katla historically erupts following the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull (which erupted 14-April and went on for 10 days). Katla’s volcanic eruptions have ranged in duration from 13 days to as long as 120 days, while the last three Katla eruptions have been between 20 and 28 days.

We will not know the answer to the question of 10x or 100x until it happens, but in the mean time, if I lived nearby, I would stock up with some extra food and water just in case the disruption is bad enough. We all know that it will happen, it could be tomorrow or months from now, but the clock is definitely ticking.

The ash plume from Iceland's Eyjafjallajökull volcano, which crippled international air travel in April, held a shocking secret: an unexpected electric charge.

Ash plumes directly over erupting volcanoes have been known to generate lightning, and electrically charged ash has been found in previous plumes up to 30 miles (50 kilometers) from their source volcanoes. (See pictures of lighting in the Eyjafjallajökull volcano's ash plume.)

But according to a new study, electric ash from the Eyjafjallajökull volcano was found a record 745 miles (1,200 kilometers) away from the eruption.

At that distance, it wasn't energy from the eruption itself that charged the ash, said study co-author Giles Harrison, a meteorologist at the University of Reading in the U.K. Based on the average size and shape of particles in the ash, "any initial charging that occurred would have decayed away many times over."

In fact, ash from deep in the volcanic plume was still charged 32 hours after being spewed from the Iceland peak, which suggests that the charge was self-renewing, the scientists say.

The discovery means that many volcanic ash plumes might be electrified, which could have implications for the air-travel industry.

(Related: "Iceland Volcano Ash Plume Prompts Health Worries.")

Electric Ash Deep in Volcanic Plume

The Eyjafjallajökull volcano started erupting in late March, and on April 14 the volcano began belching out a gigantic plume of ash.

The plume traveled to continental Europe, grounding flights around the world for days, due to fears of ash clogging plane engines. (Find out more about the risks volcanic ash poses to airplanes.)

As the plume drifted over Scotland, Harrison and colleagues rushed to the western port city of Stranraer (map), where the 1,970-foot-thick (600-meter-thick) layer of ash loomed about two and a half miles (four kilometers) above.

The team launched a custom weather balloon outfitted with instruments to gauge the size and characteristics of atmospheric ash particles.

Even in fair weather, a very small electric field is present in Earth's atmosphere. This field can charge airborne particles and the edges of clouds, Harrison said.

But the electric volcanic ash was found in the middle of the thick plume, not on its edges. That would seem to rule out atmospheric electricity and normal weather activity as sources of the charge.

"There has to be something related to the particles themselves, because the charge is in proportion to where the particles are and how many there are," Harrison said. "But we really can't say any more than that."

Prior research done with weather balloons had shown that desert dust storms can become electrified through a process of particle collision that is not yet completely understood. The same phenomenon may be at work with volcanic ash, the scientists suggest.

Electric Ash Found in Iceland Plume Miles From Volcano
Ash recharged itself as the plume moved over Europe, study says.

How Electric Ash Affects Flights

Electrified ash could theoretically pose a risk to air traffic, because charged particles might interfere with radio transmissions, the study authors say. Also, if charged ash penetrates an aircraft cabin, it could create an electrostatic hazard to passengers and internal systems.

But Harrison noted that aircraft are built to withstand lightning strikes, which carry comparatively massive charges, so the risks from electricity in ash seem small.

In fact, Harrison noted, the discovery of electric ash could be a boon to air travelers, because the charge can help scientists better predict a volcanic ash plume's movements.

Electric charges are fairly easy to observe with existing instruments, so a charged plume should be easier to track, even after the visible plume has largely dispersed.

Scientists also know how charges affect the way particles combine—which impacts their weight and thus their movements—and how easily particles are washed out of the sky by rainfall.

Measuring a plume's charges could therefore help scientists better estimate where the ash will go and how long it will stay aloft.

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