Orbital View As The Pine Island Glacier Shatters

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
February 13, 2020
Filed under , ,
Orbital View As The Pine Island Glacier Shatters
Pine Island Glacier

The Pine Island Glacier recently spawned an iceberg over 300 sq km that very quickly shattered into pieces.
This almost cloud-free image, captured on 11 February by the Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission, shows the freshly broken bergs in detail.

A recent animation using 57 radar images captured by the Copernicus Sentinel-1 mission shows just how quickly the emerging cracks from the glacier grew – leading to this historic calving event.

Thanks to the combination of both optical and radar images from the Copernicus Sentinel satellite missions, growing cracks were spotted in the Pine Island Glacier last year, and since then, scientists have been keeping a close eye on how quick the cracks were growing.

The Pine Island Glacier, along with its neighbour Thwaites glacier, connect the centre of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet with the ocean, and together discharge significant quantities of ice into the ocean.

Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2020), processed by ESA, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO

Larger image

SpaceRef co-founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.