10 Miles to go to Snap, Crackle and Pop

1Images from NASA’s Terra satellite show that the crack is spreading rapidly through the Larsen C ice shelf. Now, only 10 miles of ice separate it from the open sea

In 2014, a crack opened up in Antarctica’s Larsen C ice shelf. Three years later, the rift has spread through the ice shelf and now just 10 miles of ice is keeping the entire ice shelf intact. Once the rift goes all the way across, it will produce an iceberg roughly the size of the state of Delaware.

It’s not the first time the Antarctic is on the verge of losing a giant iceberg in this way, researchers suggest that Larsen C collapse will significantly change the landscape of the continent. It will allow the glacial ice to enter the ocean faster and accelerate the pace of sea level rise.

Everyone wants to know when the part of Larsen C will finally break away. Ice fracturing depends on a large number of factors, many of which are poorly understood.