Researchers film glacier calving massive iceberg in Greenland

Earth's biggest glaciers are in frozen Antarctica, and their breakup would be catastrophic for sea level rise; the loss of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet would release enough water to raise global sea levels by almost 10 feet (3 meters). But even though the icebergs tossed into the sea here are contributing to sea level rise, scientists still don't know exactly how such break-ups work. But there is much that scientists have yet to learn about how and why this large-scale breakage happens, which makes it hard to predict when glaciers will fall apart, and how much that glacier disintegration will affect sea levels over time, David Holland, leader of the research team and a professor at New York University's Courant Institute of Mathematics and NYU Abu Dhabi, told Live Science. The resulting iceberg, broken off from Greenland's Helheim Glacier, would stretch.

"Global sea-level rise is both undeniable and consequential", said research team leader David Holland in a statement.

The process by which ice breaks away from a glacier is known as calving.

The calving event captured on video began on June 22 at 11:30 p.m. local time and took place over approximately 30 minutes (the video has condensed the time of this occurrence to approximately 90 seconds).

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The vast piece of ice that breaks away is described as a tabular iceberg because it is wide and flat. Later in the video, you can see two tabular bergs collide, splitting one in half and overturning the two new pieces.

There's an otherworldly quality to the footage, like you're watching a special-effects scene from beyond The Wall in Game of Thrones.

Documenting an event such as this in its entirely can pave the way for more precise simulations, experts say, and help us determine how large icebergs may affect future sea levels.

"The range of these different iceberg formation styles helps us build better computer models for simulating and modeling iceberg calving", explains Denise Holland.

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