Iceberg A38-B off South Georgia - related image preview

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Iceberg A38-B off South Georgia - related image preview

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Iceberg A38-B off South Georgia

Between April 12 and April 15, the A38-B iceberg split in half. The split was recorded in this series of Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) images. The iceberg was originally part of the massive A-38 iceberg, which broke from the Ronne Ice Shelf in Antarctica around October 13, 1998. At the time, the A-38 iceberg was more than 90 miles (144 km) long and 30 miles (48 km) wide, the largest iceberg that had been observed in a decade. By October 22, 1998, A-38B had started to break off the original iceberg. The pieces drifted about 1,500 nautical miles north to their present location around South Georgia Island in the South Atlantic.

On April 12, 2004, the A-38B iceberg was intact. The next time MODIS flew over the iceberg on April 15, A-38B had broken in half. The eastern half of the iceberg is now called A-38G. It measures 12 by 38 nautical miles (22 by 70 km) in size. The western half, still called A-38B, is only slightly smaller at an estimated size of 10 by 38 nautical miles (19 by 70 km). By April 17 and April 18, A-38G, right, had moved quickly north and turned west. The remaining section of A-38B appears to be grounded.

Another section of the A-38 iceberg, A-38D, was covered in melt water ponds as it drifted past South Georgia Island in late January 2004—the height of the summer in the Southern Hemisphere.

Iceberg measurements courtesy United States National Ice Center.

Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC

Published April 20, 2004
Data acquired April 12, 2004

Terra > MODIS
MODIS Rapid Response
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