August 29, 2012 - Iceberg from Petermann Glacier, northern Greenland

Iceberg from Petermann Glacier, northern Greenland

In late August, 2012 a large iceberg calved from the Petermann Glacier in July, 2012 continued to drift southward from its birthplace in the Petermann Fiord towards Baffin Bay via the Nares Strait. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this true-color image on August 23, 2012.

Nares Strait is a narrow passage between northern Ellesmere Island (west) and Greenland (east). As the northernmost extent of Baffin Bay, it carries water from the Arctic Ocean southward and, at times, it also carries icebergs.

Since the calving event on July 16, in which the floating ice at the tip of Petermann Glacier broke free, the iceberg has drifted slowly southwards. Several fragments of PII-2012, as the iceberg was dubbed, have been identified, and have each floated southward more quickly. PII-2012 itself has moved more slowly, and remains the most northerly of the identified pieces of this year’s calving event.

Image Facts
Satellite: Terra
Date Acquired: 8/23/2012
Resolutions: 1km ( B), 500m ( B), 250m ( B)
Bands Used: 1,4,3
Image Credit: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC