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Ground-Based Measurements of the 2014–2015 Holuhraun Volcanic Cloud (Iceland)

Icelandic Meteorological Office, Bústaðavegur 7-9, 108 Reykjavík, Iceland
Department of Space, Earth and Environment, Chalmers University of Technology, SE-412 96 Göteborg, Sweden
Department of Geography, King’s College London, WC2R 2LS London, UK
School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds, LS2 9JT Leeds, UK
School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Manchester, M13 9P Manchester, UK
Dipartimento DiSTeM, University of Palermo, Via Archirafi 36, 90123 Palermo, Italy
School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburgh, EH8 9XP Edinburgh, UK
Environment Agency of Iceland, Suðurlandsbraut 24, 108 Reykjavík, Iceland
AUV Consultants, 52Vesturás, Reykjavík 101, Iceland
Institute of Earth Sciences, University of Iceland, Sæmundargata 2, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland
Instituto Dom Luiz, University of Beira Interior, Rua Marques d´Avila e Boloma, 6201-001 Covilhã, Portugal
Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia- Sezione di Catania, 95125 Catania, Italy
School of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, BS8 1TH Bristol, UK
AIRES Pty Ltd, PO Box 156, Mt Eliza, Victoria 3930, Australia
Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia- Sezione di Palermo, Via Ugo la Malfa 153, 90146 Palermo, Italy
Sapienza, University of Rome, 00184 Rome, Italy
National Research Council of Italy, Institute of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, Via Fosso del Cavaliere 100, 00133 Rome, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Geosciences 2018, 8(1), 29;
Received: 13 November 2017 / Revised: 8 January 2018 / Accepted: 10 January 2018 / Published: 18 January 2018
The 2014–2015 Bárðarbunga fissure eruption at Holuhraun in central Iceland was distinguished by the high emission of gases, in total 9.6 Mt SO2, with almost no tephra. This work collates all ground-based measurements of this extraordinary eruption cloud made under particularly challenging conditions: remote location, optically dense cloud with high SO2 column amounts, low UV intensity, frequent clouds and precipitation, an extensive and hot lava field, developing ramparts, and high-latitude winter conditions. Semi-continuous measurements of SO2 flux with three scanning DOAS instruments were augmented by car traverses along the ring-road and along the lava. The ratios of other gases/SO2 were measured by OP-FTIR, MultiGAS, and filter packs. Ratios of SO2/HCl = 30–110 and SO2/HF = 30–130 show a halogen-poor eruption cloud. Scientists on-site reported extremely minor tephra production during the eruption. OPC and filter packs showed low particle concentrations similar to non-eruption cloud conditions. Three weather radars detected a droplet-rich eruption cloud. Top of eruption cloud heights of 0.3–5.5 km agl were measured with ground- and aircraft-based visual observations, web camera and NicAIR II infrared images, triangulation of scanning DOAS instruments, and the location of SO2 peaks measured by DOAS traverses. Cloud height and emission rate measurements were critical for initializing gas dispersal simulations for hazard forecasting. View Full-Text
Keywords: Holuhraun; Bárðarbunga; gas; SO2; cloud height; eruption monitoring; fissure eruption Holuhraun; Bárðarbunga; gas; SO2; cloud height; eruption monitoring; fissure eruption
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Pfeffer, M.A.; Bergsson, B.; Barsotti, S.; Stefánsdóttir, G.; Galle, B.; Arellano, S.; Conde, V.; Donovan, A.; Ilyinskaya, E.; Burton, M.; Aiuppa, A.; Whitty, R.C.W.; Simmons, I.C.; Arason, Þ.; Jónasdóttir, E.B.; Keller, N.S.; Yeo, R.F.; Arngrímsson, H.; Jóhannsson, Þ.; Butwin, M.K.; Askew, R.A.; Dumont, S.; Von Löwis, S.; Ingvarsson, Þ.; La Spina, A.; Thomas, H.; Prata, F.; Grassa, F.; Giudice, G.; Stefánsson, A.; Marzano, F.; Montopoli, M.; Mereu, L. Ground-Based Measurements of the 2014–2015 Holuhraun Volcanic Cloud (Iceland). Geosciences 2018, 8, 29.

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