Tracking a Crack in the Antarctic Ice Sheet

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A false colour image taken by NASA's Sentinel-1A focussed on the 130 kilometer-long crack in the Larsen C ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula.
As the polar ice cap at Earth's south pole plunges into perpetual night, NASA's Earth Observatories are continuing to monitor the massive crack in Larsen C ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula (image credit: NASA).

Scientists have been closely following the growth of a large crack in the Larsen C ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula. From late 2016 until now, the crack has grown about 150 km long, accelerating in late June 2017. In these dark months, the most recent observations have been done by Thermal Infrared Sensor (TIRS) on Landsat 8. If the crack reaches the coast, which is just about 13 km away, the ice will begin to calve and could be the largest iceberg ever recorded.

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Tracking a Crack in the Antarctic Ice Sheet
NASA Earth Observatory
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Jesse Rogerson, PhD

Jesse is a passionate scientist, educator, and science communicator. As an assistant professor at York University in the Department of Science, Technology, and Society, he teaches three classes: History of Astronomy, Introduction to Astronomy, and Exploring the Solar System. He frequently collaborates with the Canada Aviation and Space Museum, and lends his expert voice to the Ingenium Channel. Jesse is an astrophysicist, and his research explores how super massive black holes evolve through time. Whether in the classroom, through social media, or on TV, he encourages conversations about how science and society intersect, and why science is relevant in our daily lives.