Map of the Larsen C ice shelf, overlaid with NASA MODIS thermal image from 12 July 2017, showing the iceberg A68 has calved. Graphic: Adrian Luckman / Project MIDAS / Swansea University

By Adrian Luckman and Martin O'Leary
19 July 2017

(Project MIDAS) – On July 12 2017, data from the Sentinel-1 satellite confirmed the calving from the Larsen C Ice Shelf of Iceberg A68, a slab of ice 5,800 km in area and weighing more than 1 trillion tonnes. New Sentinel-1 interferometry data from July 18 now shows how the remaining ice shelf is responding to the calving event.

Rifts (dark curving lines in the image), already present before A68 detached, are still in evidence and show where further small icebergs will probably be created. In a further development, a new rift appears to be extending northwards (towards the top left) and may result in further ice shelf area loss. Although this new rift will probably soon turn towards the shelf edge, there may be a risk that it will continue on to Bawden Ice Rise, a crucial point of stabilisation for Larsen C Ice Shelf.

The MIDAS Project will continue to monitor the ongoing impact of these events on the Larsen C ice shelf. Further updates will be available on this blog, and on our Twitter feed.

Larsen C responds to the calving of A68

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