A history of iceberg production

Posted on: August 28, 2015

If we asked you to pinpoint the Jakobshavn Glacier on a map, the majority of you would struggle to find it. It is in fact located in west Greenland and over recent weeks has been fascinating scientists. It is believed that at some point between the 13th and 19th August a large mass of ice broke away from the glacier. Measuring approximately 12.4 square kilometres in size, it would make the iceberg the largest ever witnessed to break away from the glacier.

It is estimated that Jakobshavn produces around 10 percent of the 30,000 to 40,000 icebergs calved annually in western Greenland. Once they break away they will slowly drift into the Davis Strait before heading out into the Arctic Ocean.

Types of Iceberg

Icebergs can generally be separated into two categories - tabular and non-tabular. Tabular icebergs are generally formed by ice that has broken away from a large ice shelf and can be identified as having steep sides and a flat top.

Irregular shaped icebergs come under the category of non-tabular and are sub-divided into categories including:

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Snowiest places on earth

Posted on: August 21, 2015

If you are a fan of the snow, you probably do not see enough of it living here in the UK as you would like. Met Office statistics show that on average we receive around 24 days of snowfall every year, though this varies from just a few centimetres along the south coast to around 87 centimetres as you move further north.

As we all know, on most occasions even a light dusting of snow is enough to bring the country to a standstill. When you consider that there are cities around the world which receive considerably more snow than we do, it makes you wonder how they manage to survive!

To give you an indication of what other parts of the world experience, we have listed the five snowiest locations on the planet.

Alyeska, USA

Situated just outside Anchorage in Alaska, Alyeska is an alpine ski resort which was developed during the 1960s and has grown to become the largest skiing resort in the state of Alaska. The town is surrounded on all sides by the Chugach State Park and sits close to the states southern shoreline. Each year it is estimated that the area receives an average

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Prepare for winter weather

Posted on: August 13, 2015

If you think Mother Nature has delivered a mixed bunch weather-wise for your area this summer, spare a thought for people living in the Scottish Highlands. No sooner had they been basking in temperatures that rocketed above 30°C, than they were reaching for a jumper as they plummeted below freezing at the end of July. Yes, during the last week of JULY gritting lorries were spotted for the second time in the space of a few weeks on the A90 in Scotland.

Of course, snow in Scotland at this time of year is not uncommon. Much of the winter snow, especially in areas such as the Cairngorm region, will last well into August and September before melting. Some will even la

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The mystery of ice

Posted on: August 4, 2015

Asking someone 'what is ice?' may seem like a relatively simple question. There is a good chance you will receive lots of answers along the lines of 'frozen water'. However, the truth is that ice, especially that forming on large expanses of open water, can take on many different and incredibly beautiful forms.

These different forms of ice are defined into categories by The World Meteorological Organisation depending on their origin, size and shape. Some of the more unique and fascinating types of ice include:

  • Frazil Ice

    Frazil ice resembles slush and is the first stage in sea ice formation. It will generally form on open, turbulent and supercooled waters such as rivers, lakes and oceans. Supercooled water occurs when the water surface loses heat quickly and frazil ice therefore commonly forms on clear nights, when the temperature has fallen below -6°C (21°F). Strong winds or the flow of the water will cause the supercooled water on the surface to mix at all depths and the small frazil ice crystals get dragged from the surface to the

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