City-size iceberg drifting away from Antarctica
November 14, 2013 -- Updated 1931 GMT (0331 HKT)
In mid-October 2011, NASA scientists working in Antarctica discovered a massive crack across the Pine Island Glacier.
- Iceberg could last in open ocean for a year, researcher says
- Sea ice that kept berg close to Antarctica now melting, scientist says
- Iceberg separated from glacier in July
(CNN) -- A massive iceberg that broke off an Antarctic glacier in July is now moving toward the open ocean and could pose a threat to busy shipping lanes, researchers reported.
The huge berg is estimated to be about 270 square miles (700 square kilometers) in area, about the size of nation of Singapore or double the size of the city of Atlanta.
"An iceberg that size could survive for a year or longer and it could drift a long way north in that time and end up in the vicinity of world shipping lanes in the Southern Ocean," Robert Marsh, a scientist at the University of Southampton in England, said in a press release this week.
Detecting the dangers of Greenland's giant icebergs
The crack that produced the iceberg is seen in October 2011.
Marsh is part of a team of scientists who have been given an emergency grant to track the iceberg and predict its path so ships traveling through the area can be alerted.
Researchers at the Alfred Wegener Institute, using images from the German Space Agency's TerraSAR-X satellite, reported in July that the iceberg was separating from the Antarctica's Pine Island Glacier. It had been kept close to the glacier by sea ice, another researcher, Grant Bigg from the University of Sheffield, told the BBC. But the end of the Antarctic winter has melted some of the sea ice and given the berg a route to the open ocean, he said.
"In the last couple of days, it has begun to break away and now a kilometer or two of clear water has developed between it and the glacier," Bigg told the BBC.
The calving of the massive berg has been a long process. The crack that produced it was first detected by a NASA plane in October 2011.
The researchers say this will be the first time to track the path of such a massive iceberg, something that will be more important as the effects of global warming increase.
Antarctic ice shelves 'tearing apart,' says study
Part of complete coverage on
March 15, 2014 -- Updated 0128 GMT (0928 HKT)
Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about this baffling disappearance.
March 14, 2014 -- Updated 1146 GMT (1946 HKT)
The two pilots who were flying Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 may lead to a few clues in the investigation.
March 13, 2014 -- Updated 1534 GMT (2334 HKT)
As investigators search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, analysts try to figure out why the high-tech plane's transponders were disabled.
Track star Oscar Pistorius is accused of killing his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp. Follow live updates of South Africa's trial of the century.
March 14, 2014 -- Updated 0958 GMT (1758 HKT)
A CNN team joins international observers trying to get into Crimea from Ukraine -- here's what they saw.
March 13, 2014 -- Updated 1224 GMT (2024 HKT)
Watch how Pope Francis is redefining the papacy and breathing new life into the Catholic Church.
March 16, 2014 -- Updated 0851 GMT (1651 HKT)
Browse through images you don't always see on news reports from CNN teams around the world.
March 13, 2014 -- Updated 1545 GMT (2345 HKT)
Michael Oren: He says the question is whether a truce can prevent conflict from becoming conflagration.
The Fukushima nuclear disaster changed global attitudes towards nuclear power. Explore our interactive to find out how.
March 12, 2014 -- Updated 2029 GMT (0429 HKT)
You -- the person now reading this story -- can help experts solve the mystery of what happened to Malaysia Airlines Flight 370.
March 13, 2014 -- Updated 1051 GMT (1851 HKT)
Scientists around the world are investigating whether living cells can be used to print replacement organs and tissues.
March 13, 2014 -- Updated 1153 GMT (1953 HKT)
There are two Web clips featuring Beyonce that have been getting a lot of attention.
Today's five most popular stories