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Wilkins ice shelf collapse continues

Cross-posted from The Great Beyond


Following the collapse on April 4 of a narrow ice bridge that had connected the Wilkins ice shelf with a small island off the Antarctic Peninsula, the northern ice front of the ice sheet is beginning to disintegrate.

A high-resolution radar image taken on April 20 by the German TerraSAR-X satellite shows large icebergs being released from a rift zone near Latady Island. Scientists expect up to 3,400 square kilometretres of the Wilkins Ice Sheet to break into icebergs before a new stable ice front will form.

Quirin Schiermeier


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    Abraham Ben Judea said:

    I’m glad I found your site. Very interesting news about this wilkens break up. I believe that It doesn’t matters wether the cause is manmade or part of a natural cycle. Because the current model we have for the Thermohaline Circulation I believe is way out of date.

    The current Arctic ice pack has been greatly diminished; therefore the warm water current from the Gulf is able to travel further north before it’s forced to join the south going deep cold current. If the traditional point at which the deep water current formation has shifted that means that the geological bottle neck of the North Atlantic is no longer valid. Now that deep water formation point has shifted further north into the Arctic Circle. This deep water formation point is no longer as focused by the underwater geologic funnel.

    The point I’m trying to make is that those people who predict an ice free Arctic should also see that the Atlantic part of the Thermahaline conveyor will no longer be the same; it will be slowed and sifted by the Arctic Islands. This might explain why in mid April I see 50 degree waters almost to the Equator on the west side of the African coast.

    Now I ask a favor of those people with the right equipment, to run a Thermohaline computer simulation with different shifting deep water formation points. Special focus should be the South Africa area. This is where I believe an ocean current that used to come from the Pacif to join into the Atlantic no longer goes north but goes south into Antartica. I look forward to reading the results of the simulation.

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