GIANT ICEBERG A68a PRANGS SEABED AND LOSES CORNER
The icy colossus that is A68a has knocked off a corner, seemingly as a result of striking the seafloor.
The 3,800-sq-km iceberg, which has been bearing down on the island of South Georgia, looked in recent days to be turning with the prevailing current.
But as it spun around, it appears part of the frozen block may have scraped the bed, inflicting damage on itself.
Satellite images on Thursday revealed a roughly 150-sq-km chunk to be floating free of the main berg.
The new piece of debris is so large that it’s likely from now on to be called A68d, under the iceberg nomenclature operated by the US National Ice Center.
Two other large lumps that broke away previously from the primary block were designated A68b and A68c.
Originating in Antarctica in 2017, A68a is the world’s largest iceberg “in the open ocean”. There is another great tabular berg called A23a which is slightly bigger but this has hardly moved from its calving position at the Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf in the Weddell Sea.