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Iceberg C-38 Has Calved as the Conger Ice Shelf Broke Free in the Wilkes Land Region Figure 1: Sentinel-1A image of icebergs C-38 from March 17, 2022

Climate Change

Antarctica: Iceberg C-38 Calves, Conger Ice Shelf Broken Free

Days after record heat, lots of ice breaks free of glaciers in Antarctica.

The U.S. National Ice Center (USNIC) has confirmed that iceberg C-38 (Figure 1, below) has calved from the Conger Ice Shelf in the Wilkes Land Region of Antarctica. As of March 17, C-38 was centered at 65° 40′ South and 102° 46′ East and measured 16 nautical miles on its longest axis and 10 nautical miles on its widest axis. C-38 comprised virtually all that remained of the Conger ice shelf, which was adjacent to the Glenzer Ice Shelf which calved last week as iceberg C-37.

The new iceberg was first spotted by Jan Lieser from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, and confirmed by USNIC Analyst, Christopher Readinger, using the Sentinel-1A image below

Iceberg names are derived from the quadrant of Antarctica in which they were originally sighted. The quadrants are divided counter-clockwise in the following manner:

A = 0-90W (Bellingshausen/Weddell Sea)
B = 90W-180 (Amundsen/Eastern Ross Sea)
C = 180-90E (Western Ross Sea/Wilkesland)
D = 90E-0 (Amery/Eastern Weddell Sea)

When first sighted, an iceberg’s point of origin is documented by USNIC. The letter of the quadrant, along with a sequential number, is assigned to the iceberg. For example, C-19 is sequentially the 19th iceberg tracked by USNIC in Antarctica between 180-90E (Quadrant C). Icebergs with letter suffixes have calved from already named icebergs, where the letters are added in sequential order. For example, C-19D is the 4th iceberg to calve off the original C-19 iceberg.

Iceberg positions are analyzed weekly and are available on the USNIC webpage at: https://usicecenter.gov/Products/AntarcIcebergs

Republished from U. S. National Ice Center. By Christopher Readinger, USN

Related read: Satellite data shows entire Conger ice shelf has collapsed in Antarctica

Related read by Bill McKibben:

Head on over to that New Yorker article, see what Bill McKibben has to say, then come back here and share your thoughts on the recent ice breakups and heat waves in Antarctica in the comments section at the bottom of the page.

 
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