London-sized Iceberg breaks off Antarctica

An iceberg that recently broke off Antarctica and fell into the sea is almost 600 square miles long and nearly 500 miles thick — or about the size of London.

“This calving event is not linked to climate change”

Scientists had been tracking the crack for a decade, but the ice finally broke on Jan. 22. According to Professor Dominic Hodgson, a glaciologist with the British Antarctic Survey, “This calving event has been expected and is part of the natural behavior of the Brunt Ice Shelf. It is not linked to climate change.”

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In satellite images, you can see the crack in the ice slowly growing before the chunk ultimately breaks off into the ocean. Just 15 miles away from the crack, there’s a research station that houses 21 staff members who have been tracking the behavior of the ice shelf. 

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The British Antarctic Survey said the staff will stay *“until they are collected by aircraft”* around Feb. 6. In the meantime, they will prep their research equipment to work remotely through winter. 

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