In July 2017, the Larsen C ice shelf along the east coast of the Antarctic Peninsula gave birth to A-68A – one of the largest icebergs on the planet. The berg broke up in April 2021, ending a more than 2,500-kilometer journey that lasted nearly four years. This video highlights some of the remarkable moments of the iceberg, from its initial break between winter darkness, to its sunny debut, to its close encounter with a distant island.
The merger of A-68A will not directly contribute to sea level rise. But satellite images like these – captured through the ice crack, birth and subsequent drift – will help scientists study the natural life cycles of Antarctic ice shelves and icebergs yet to come.
Video by Kathryn Hansen, based on NASA Images from The Earth Observatory by Lauren Dauphin, Joshua Stevens and Jesse Allen. Scientific review by Christopher Shuman (NASA GSFC / UMBC JCET).