NASA captures incredible image of near-perfect rectangle iceberg off Antarctic Peninsula

The B-15 iceberg is the world's largest free-floating object ever recorded

The B-15 iceberg is the world's largest free-floating object ever recorded

Nasa has released a striking photo of a rectangular iceberg floating in the Weddell Sea off Antarctica.

NASA shared an image of the perfectly formed iceberg on its Twitter page, after spotting it while flying over the region as part of Operation Icebridge, the largest airborne survey of Earth's polar ice.

Tabular icebergs are wide and flat and long - "like sheet cake" - Kelly Brunt, an ice scientist with NASA, told Live Science journal.

The BBC explains that the iceberg probably separated recently from the Larsen C ice shelf, and such new breakaway bergs are sometimes "geometrically" shaped.

This particular 'berg came from the crumbling Larsen C ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula. "You can just get these fracture lines that can form these interesting geometric structures", he says, and points out a different, triangle-shaped iceberg spotted by NASA scientists recently.

The expansive ice shelves that create the icebergs are hanging off of Antarctic land, somewhat similar to the flimsy tape extended out from a tape measure. Not all of them are rectangular-some have jagged borders like a puzzle piece, but most of their sides are sheer and smooth (at least at first).

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"What makes this one a bit unusual is that it looks nearly like a square", Brunt said.

"We get two types of icebergs: We get the type that everyone can envision in their head that sank the Titanic, and they look like prisms or triangles at the surface and you know they have a insane subsurface".

As for the size of the iceberg NASA photographed, Brunt said it's possibly more than a mile across - but it hasn't been measured yet.

The tabular iceberg appears to be floating, but it's unknown how much of it lies below.

And as with all icebergs only 10% of it is visible; the rest if buried below the surface of the water.

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