NASA has discovered a charmingly memorable and naturally formed rectangular ice sheet during a routine flyover on 16th October. This survey was named “Operation Ice Bridge”. It was especially designed to monitor changes in the ice levels at various glaciers across Antarctica. New discovery appeared during one of the regular surveillance flights. The senior support scientist Jeremy Harbeck discovered an extraordinary angular iceberg floating just off the Larsen C ice shelf. Harbeck said in a statement that he often saw icebergs with almost straight edges. But he didn’t see one before with two corners with exact perfect angles such as current discovery.
The picture was shared on the social media account of NASA. It initiated questions as to whether it was a natural occurrence. A marine glaciologist with the Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems Cooperative Research Center, Jan Lieser said that it isn’t unusual to see straight lines and sharp angles on ice sheets. He said that it is a natural occurrence and it’s beautiful, but nothing out of ordinary. He has seen various icebergs around Antarctica that have very straight, very long sides. The iceberg’s sharp angles and flat surface points that it probably recently calved from the ice shelf.
From yesterday's #IceBridge flight: A tabular iceberg can be seen on the right, floating among sea ice just off of the Larsen C ice shelf. The iceberg's sharp angles and flat surface indicate that it probably recently calved from the ice shelf. pic.twitter.com/XhgTrf642Z
— NASA ICE (@NASA_ICE) October 17, 2018
Lieser added that the straight lines are due to the structure of the snow crystals, and how they break apart and react to stresses. He said that there isn’t one going around with a chainsaw and chopping it off. Nature does sometimes go on square angles. NASA issued a statement that Harbeck said he had actually been more interested in capturing the massive A68 iceberg. The size of this new discovery is almost similar to the U.S state of Delaware, which split off from the Larson C ice shelf in 2017. Harbeck said that they were about to fly over but thought this one was visually interesting and fairly photogenic, so on a lark, he just took a couple of photos.