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Ross Sea Icebergs
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Ross Sea Icebergs

December 15, 2004
Summer's thaw normally releases Antarctica's Ross Sea and McMurdo Sound from the thick sea ice that accumulates over the winter, but this year the process is being blocked. The 3,000-square kilometer (1,200 square mile) B-15A iceberg is disrupting the normal wind and current patterns that break up the ice, leaving McMurdo Sound frozen. An official from Antarctica New Zealand told the Associated Press that more ice has accumulated in the sound this year than any other year on record, thanks to the giant berg. He also reports that the build up of sea ice may cause penguins to starve because of the distance they must travel to reach open waters and food. The frozen sound also presents problems for supply ships due to bring supplies to the United States' McMurdo Base and New Zealand's Scott Base in December and January. This true-color image was acquired by the Terra MODIS instrument on December 13, 2004.


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