Between November 9–11, 2013, a large iceberg finally separated from the calving front of Antarctica’s Pine Island Glacier. Scientists first detected a rift in the glacier in October 2011 during flights for NASA’s Operation IceBridge. By July 2013, infrared and radar images indicated that the crack had cut completely across the ice shelf to the southwestern edge. New images now show that Iceberg B-31 is finally moving away from the coast, with open water between the iceberg and the edge of Pine Island Glacier.
The Operational Land Imager on the Landsat 8 satellite acquired these natural-color images of the iceberg in Pine Island Bay on November 13 (top) and October 28, 2013. Clouds and fog make the November 13 image a bit hazy, but the open-water gap between the iceberg and the ice shelf is still apparent. Click here for a wider view of the iceberg from November 10, just after the separation.