NASA’s ongoing decades-long survey of polar ice has yielded some truly incredible photographs over the years, but one recently still captured what appears to be a perfectly, almost impossibly rectangular iceberg.
Snapped by NASA’s ICE mission, as part of Operation IceBridge, the giant tabular iceberg borne of the Larsen C ice shelf looks as though it was neatly cut from the wider ice shelf using a giant band saw.
As with regular icebergs, just 10 percent of its mass is visible in the picture, though the subsurface mass is would look similar to what’s visible above.
However, we tend to think of icebergs as jagged and pointy, with the bulk beneath the surface, and with a penchant for ruining DiCaprio romances. Table icebergs are immense slabs of ice with a flat top and vertical sides that form by ‘calving’ or splintering off a much larger ice shelf. They can take more geometrically pleasing shapes than their more rugged, non-tabular counterparts.
These particular icebergs can be truly immense, measuring hundreds and sometimes thousands of square kilometers across, such as the 11,000 square kilometers (4,200 square miles) B -15, the world’s largest free-floating object ever recorded.
NASA Boffins have yet to measure this latest contender, but early estimates indicate it’s unlikely to topple B-15 off the top spot for the world’s largest iceberg that a paltry READ MORE: Build that wall: Climate scientists propose walling off Antarctic ice sheets to protect them
The incredibly clean edges indicate how new this iceberg is, as the wind and the sea have yet to erode its flanks.
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