09.06.2024 - 18.07.2024
Chief scientist:
Nico Augustin

Most recent volcanic eruptions in Iceland occur along the active plate boundaries and volcanically active flanks, especially on the seabed along the Kolbeinsey and Reykjanes ridges. However, new seafloor maps show 16 new volcanic cones in the Vesturdjúp Basin, about 205 kilometres west of Iceland. These volcanoes are probably younger than the surrounding seabed, which is more than 15 million years old. They are thought to be Holocene in age, i.e. younger than 10,000 years, because they are very steep and show no signs of erosion.

The VEBVOLC expedition aims to investigate this new volcanic flank zone off the coast of Iceland. High-resolution seabed maps, seismic profiles, video recordings and rock and sediment samples will be collected. This data will help determine the age of the volcanoes and whether they are connected to the nearby Snæfellsnes flank zone, other fault systems or the Icelandic hotspot. The Vesturdjúp Basin offers a unique opportunity to understand how hotspots modify the seabed and interact with ancient rift zones.