A23a: Massive Antarctic Iceberg On The Move


Recently, the enormous Antarctic iceberg A23a sized some 4,000 kilometres square (or 1,500 square miles) that stayed grounded for many years at the entrance of the Weddell Sea has commenced motion again. Disengaging from Filchner Ronne Ice Shelf in 1986, this one trillion-metric-ton giant is attracting scientists’ attention while travelling through Antarctica.

Unprecedented Movement

It is a breathtaking phenomenon that occurs when a 105-million-year-old iceberg called A23a moves fast above the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. Its rapid advance is revealed in satellite images due to its strength of wind and currents. This unusual occurrence is keenly observed by the scientific community indicating that the movement of such a huge ice cube was remarkable.

Potential Impact and Uncertain Path

As A23a gains momentum, concerns arise about its potential collision with the Antarctic Circumpolar Current, redirecting it towards the perilous Ice Berg Alley in the Southern Ocean. While glaciologist Oliver Marsh suggests the iceberg may ground again at South Georgia Island, posing threats to local wildlife, the possibility of its survival in the warmer Southern Ocean raises alarms about its potential journey towards South Africa, posing risks to shipping and navigation.

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Source: marineinsight