The World’s Largest Iceberg B-15A is splitting

by on . In Image Gallery

Iceberg B-15A was the largest iceberg in the world (~11,000 square kilometers) when it broke away from Western Antarctica’s Ross Ice Shelf in March 2000. The Multi-Angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) acquired these views of the new iceberg B-15J (resting against Ross Island) and B-15A (now free to drift into the Southern Ocean) on October 26. The two images provide information on both the spectral and angular reflectance properties of ice types in the region.

The left-hand panel is a false-color view from MISR’s vertical-viewing (nadir) camera in which near-infrared, red and blue spectral data are displayed as red, green, and blue, respectively. Because of the tendency of water to absorb near-infrared wavelengths, some ice types exhibit an especially bright blue hue in this display.

The right-hand panel is a multi-angular composite from three MISR cameras, in which color acts as a proxy for angular reflectance variations related to texture. Here, data from the red-band of MISR’s 60 degree forward-viewing, nadir, and 60 degree backward-viewing cameras are displayed as red, green, and blue, respectively. Image courtesy NASA/GSFC/LaRC/JPL, MISR Team and text by Clare Averill.