A Crack In Antarctica's Larsen Ice Shelf Has Grown 17 Miles In The Last Two Months

Posted: Feb 8 2017, 5:55am CST | by , in News | Latest Science News

 

A Crack in Antarctica's Larsen Ice Shelf Has Grown 17 Miles in the Last Two Months
The Larsen Ice Shelf is situated along the northeastern coast of the Antarctic Peninsula, one of the fastest-warming places on the planet. Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory image by Jesse Allen, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey
  • Crack in Antarctica extends 17 Miles further in the Last 60 Days
 

A crack that appeared in the icy continent of Antarctica has extended 17 miles further in the last 60 odd days or so. The scientists say that it will create the biggest iceberg ever seen on the planet.

A crack in an ice shelf of Antarctica is advancing at a brisk pace. This chasm has begun widening in a locus that is known for its warm temperatures.

Since December 2016, the crack has lengthened by 17 miles thereby adding to the fears of the scientists. It looks like it will cause a large piece of ice to detach itself from the continent and float out to sea. 

Termed Larsen C, this crack is 100 miles in its length. Some parts of it are as wide as two miles. As for the edge of this ice shelf, it is just 20 miles short of reaching the other end.

Once the piece of ice detaches itself from the mainland, it will go on to form the largest iceberg ever recorded in history. Project Midas consists of a group of scientists that have been tracking this ever-increasing abyss since two years back.  

The stresses and strains on this piece of land are enormous and couple that with global warming and you get the picture of how it is ready to float away from Antarctica, according to NYTimes.

The breakage will occur soon if things continue in their present pace. Within the next few months, the rift will take place. Now this crack has shifted its focus from a region of soft ice to one of different geological status.

A time lapse photography and model shows the rift increase in its width from 2014 to 2017. It is indeed an object lesson in how certain inherent forces act on the earth and change it over the course of time.  

Ice shelves undergo formation via glaciers. When they break down, the glaciers find a way to the oceanic waters. The high temperatures have a role to play in all this.

Radical changes in the Antarctic continent are most likely to take place no matter what steps are taken by humanity. It is a case of too little, too late. The threat to the ice shelf as the ice gets thinner and thinner is very real.

It is all just a matter time before the detachment process takes place. Then a huge lump in the shape of an iceberg will float out into the sea thereby adding to the maritime dangers faced by humanity. 

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
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