ibusinesslines.com December 14, 2018

NASA scientists BAFFLED by perfectly rectangular MILE-WIDE iceberg

23 October 2018, 10:55 | Justin Tyler

The folks at NASA captured an incredible image of a near-perfect rectangular iceberg floating off the Antarctic Peninsula.

We all have an idea of what an iceberg looks like, and usually we imagine a chunky mountainous formation or an irregular slab with a seal lounging on top.

The US space agency's explanation that the odd-looking iceberg's sharp angles and flat surface was an indication that it had recently broken off from a larger iceberg didn't seem to cut it online.

The discovery was made as part of Operation IceBridge, the largest ever aerial survey of the planet's ice around Greenland and in Antartica.

Kelly Brunt, an ice scientist with NASA and the University of Maryland, said such icebergs are fairly common.

"The best thing I can say is that when a "trillion tonne" iceberg runs into an ice-covered rocky island (Bawden Ice Rise) the crystalline glacier ice will fracture along planes of weakness, much like a more typical mineral crystal might be cleaved".

Brunt said the iceberg could be unstable and break if someone were to walk on it.

The mile-wide "tabular iceberg" was seen floating among sea ice off the Larsen C ice shelf by one of the United States space agency's research planes.

"What makes this one a bit unusual is that it looks nearly like a square", she added in an interview to Live Science.

A triangular iceberg was also seen nearby, surrounded by several different types of sea ice.

She said there were two types of iceberg.

And then there's the iceberg photographed last week by NASA's Operation IceBridge team.

'Sentinel-1 SAR satellite imagery from 29 August 2018 shows that to the north of the iceberg the wind is pushing the sea ice northwards faster than the iceberg is rotating.

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