Giant Iceberg Collision as Seen From Space

The collision in early February of the 60-mile-long B-9B iceberg with the protruding tongue of the Mertz Glacier in East Antarctica is captured here in a series of satellite radar images.

The crash created a second massive iceberg nearly 50 miles long and 25 miles wide, named C-28. The name means that it’s the 28th glacier since 1976 that has broken off from the quadrant of Antarctica that faces Australia.

The two icebergs have since drifted into a polynya, which is an area of open water that’s surrounded by sea ice but stays unfrozen for much or all of the year. The bergs are obstructing the ocean circulation created by the polynya, and could deprive local marine life of oxygen if they don’t move.

The images were taken by the synthetic-aperture-radar instrument aboard the European Space Agency’s Envisat satellite.” (Wired)

How Big Waves Go Rogue

Freak wave. Picture taken in the Bay of Biscay...

An extra-tall wave struck a cruise ship off the Mediterranean coast of Spain this week, claiming two lives and injuring one person on board. Though the wave may not qualify as a “rogue wave,” it could have been created by the same forces.” (Wired)

World’s Biggest Recorded Tsunami

1720 feet-tall – Lituya Bay, Alaska, July 9, 1958 (geology.com). Yes, that’s 1720 feet, 1/3 of a mile high.

Longest Solar Eclipse of the 21st Century

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A totally eclipsed sunset in Antarctica.

The event begins at the crack of dawn on Wednesday, July 22nd, in the Gulf of Khambhat just east of India. Morning fishermen will experience a sunrise like nothing they've ever seen before. Rising out of the waves in place of the usual sun will be an inky-black hole surrounded by pale streamers splayed across the sky. Sea birds will stop squawking, unsure if the day is beginning or not, as a strange shadow pushes back the dawn and stirs up a breeze of unaccustomed chill.

Most solar eclipses produce this sort of surreal experience for a few minutes at most. The eclipse of July 22, 2009, however, will last as long as 6 minutes and 39 seconds in some places, not far short of the 7 and a half minute theoretical maximum. It won't be surpassed in duration until the eclipse of June 13, 2132.” (NASA).

Spheres of Influence: A Collection of Spherical Sites

Another view of Kugelmugel

‘…[A] collection of a few of the more interesting spheres found around the world.

Sweden Solar System: The world’s largest model of our planetary system centered around the largest spherical building in the world.

The Mapparium: An three story inside-out glass globe built in 1935.

The Sudbury Neutrino Observatory: A gigantic spherical neutrino detector built into the largest man made underground cavity in the world.

Costa Rican Stone Spheres: Mysterious spherical rock formations from an earlier era.

Paris Sewer Museum: Giant wooden balls helped keep the Parisian sewers clean.

The Republic of Kugelmugel: A spherical “micro-nation” in the heart of Vienna…’ [via boing boing]