Striped and Wave like Icebergs in Antarctic

Icebergs in the Antarctic area sometimes have stripes, formed by layers of snow that react to different conditions. Blue stripes are often created when a crevice in the ice sheet fills up with melted water and freezes so quickly that no bubbles form. When an iceberg falls into the sea, a layer of salty seawater can freeze to the underside. If this is rich in algae, it can form a green stripe.

Brown, black and yellow lines are caused by sediment, picked up when the ice sheet grinds downhill towards the sea.

See these Striped Icebergs in the following photographs.

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

The photographs of ice formations posted below that look like wave were taken by scientist Tony Travouillon in Antarctica. The formation contains blue ice, and this is compelling evidence that it was not created instantly from a wave of water. Blue ice is created as the ice is compressed and trapped air bubbles are squeezed out. The ice looks blue because, when light passes through thick ice, blue light is transmitted back out but red light is absorbed.

The color of ice can be used to estimate its strength and even how long it has been frozen. Arctic Ocean ice is white during its first year because it is full of bubbles. Light will travel only a short distance before it is scattered by the bubbles and reflected back out. As a result, little absorption occurs, and the light leaves with the same color it had when it went in.

During the summer, the ice surface melts and new overlying ice layers compress the remaining air bubbles. Now, any light that enters travels a longer distance within the ice before it emerges. This gives the red end of the spectrum space enough to be absorbed, and the light returned at the surface is blue.

Arctic explorers and mountain climbers know that old, blue ice with fewer bubbles is safer and stronger than white ice. An added bonus for explorers is knowing that floating camps built on blue ice will last longer.

Thus, the deep blue colour suggests that the ice in the formation was built up slowly over time rather than formed instantly. Subsequent melting and refreezing over many seasons has given the formation its smooth, wave-like appearance.

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

icebergs of Antarctic

Source : Scientist Tony Travouillon’s blog

Comments
Loading...