The world’s largest iceberg is almost as thick as a shard, new data reveals.
Scientists used satellites to determine the size of a frozen block that is breaking away from Antarctica and heading toward the open ocean.
Satellite measurements show the total average thickness of the iceberg, known as A23a, is just over 280 meters (920 feet).
The Shard is the tallest building in the UK and the seventh tallest in Europe, at 310 meters high.
Iceberg is only 30 meters shorter than Shard
The iceberg, which is on the move for the first time in nearly 40 years, has broken off the ocean floor and is expected to soon drift beyond Antarctica.
Researchers say a trajectory through the Southern Ocean is likely to be determined in the coming weeks.
A video released last week by the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) shows the huge mass slowly moving away from the white continent to the south.
The iceberg broke away from the Filchner Ice Shelf in August 1986, but became stranded on the ocean floor after the initial breakup.
“It started moving slowly in 2020, but as you can see in the time-lapse, it started to pick up speed in early 2022,” Em Newton, digital communications officer at BAS, told Fox News.
The last time it broke was about 40 years ago.
Recent satellite images show that the iceberg, once home to a Soviet research base, is now moving rapidly past the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, aided by strong winds and ocean currents.
According to Newton, the icebergs are carried away by ocean currents and as they melt, they enter the ocean in an area known as “Iceberg Alley.”
Robbie Mallett, a sea ice scientist and researcher at University College London, said the shedding of the ice was a worrying reminder of constant climate change.
“This is currently the world’s largest iceberg. It recently regained that title,” he told CNBC.
“And it’s kind of a metaphor for how huge the cryosphere is, how big Antarctica is.
“This is shockingly large and a reminder of how much we are at risk from rising sea levels.”