Sea ice

Sea ice

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Credit: SIMON FRASER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Broken sea-ice. Sea-ice is characteristically flat, with raised edges. It is formed when an initial slush of ice crystals on the surface of the sea becomes compacted as surface temperatures drop. When thawing begins, the water undercuts the raised edge of the ice. Gradually more ice is melted, and the block of ice raises in the water as its mass decreases. This leads to the highly- undercut structures seen here. Photographed off the coast of the island of Amsterdamkoya, Svalbard.

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Keywords: amsterdamkoya, floe, ice, ice floe, sea ice, svalbard

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