Berlin-sized iceberg forming in West Antarctica

Nov 05, 2011 12:00 AM

A huge iceberg expected to grow to 880 sq km -- or the size of Berlin -- is forming in a shelf of floating ice in West Antarctica.
The iceberg started originated from a surface crack in the sheet of ice, which is located near the Pine Island Glacier (PIG) in the Antarctic region.

The rift, which first came to notice in October, runs for almost 20 miles from end to end and is reported to be 200 ft deep.
As the crack widens every day, the iceberg would be formed -- or 'calved' to use the scientific terminology, when it broke away from the floating ice mass. This is expected to happen by the end of the year or in early 2012.

According to scientists from the US space agency (NASA) the fully-formed iceberg would cover an area of around 880 sq km, the same size as the German capital city.
The Pine Island Glacier is one of the largest and fastest-moving masses of ice in the Antarctic, responsible for around a tenth of all the ice flow into the world's oceans.

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