On October 16, 2018, during an aerial survey of NASA’s Operation IceBridge tasked with assessing the changes in ice height of several Larsen Ice Shelf glaciers, two curious looking icebergs appeared.

Icebridge Scientist Jeremy Harbeck observed a rectangular shaped iceberg floating near the Larsen C Ice Shelf, which released a massive chunk of ice the size of Delaware in July of 2017, earning the designation of A68 Iceberg. It is hypothesized that these two rectangular chunks with relatively straight right angled edges are freshly calved remnants of the July 2017 ice-exodus, though a plethora of shall we say alternative theories arose after the images of these monoliths (as some call them) went viral on social media.

The five week long IceBridge flight mission began on October 10 and concludes on November 18, allowing researchers ample time to further study this odd phenomenon.

Large tabular icebergs located between Antarctica’s Larsen C ice shelf and the A-68 ice island, which calved off of the Larsen C last year, as seen on a NASA Operation IceBridge mission on Oct. 16, 2018. (NASA/Jefferson Beck)