An Iceberg Bigger Than Mallorca Breaks Free from Antarctica

The A-76 iceberg is bigger than Majorca. Image: European Space Agency

AN iceberg that is bigger than the Balearic island of Mallorca has broken off from Antarctica.

When icebergs break away from the ice shelf, scientists say they have been “calved”. This now free-floating mega lump of ice as big as an island has been called the A-76 iceberg and it is the largest iceberg in the seas anywhere in the world today, the European Space Agency said on May 19.

The iceberg is estimated to be around 4,320 square kilometres in size and roughly 175 km long by 25 km wide. Mallorca is 3,640 square kilometres in size.

The massive A-76, which broke away from Antarctica’s Ronne Ice Shelf into the Weddell Sea, ranks as the largest existing iceberg on the planet and puts the A-23A, about 3,380 square kilometres in size, into second place. Both are floating in the Weddell Sea.

A-76 was spotted in recent satellite images captured by the Copernicus Sentinel-1 mission, the European Space Agency said.

The iceberg was first spotted by the British Antarctic Survey and confirmed by America’s National Ice Centre.

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Deirdre Tynan

Deirdre Tynan is an award-winning journalist who enjoys bringing the best in news reporting to Spain’s largest English-language newspaper, Euro Weekly News. She has previously worked at The Mirror, Ireland on Sunday and for news agencies, media outlets and international organisations in America, Europe and Asia. A huge fan of British politics and newspapers, Deirdre is equally fascinated by the political scene in Madrid and Sevilla. She moved to Spain in 2018 and is based in Jaen.