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Giant ice island breaks off Greenland

August 6, 2010

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WASHINGTON—A giant ice island has broken off the Petermann Glacier in northern Greenland.

A University of Delaware researcher says the floating ice sheet covers 100 square miles -- more than four times the size of New York's Manhattan Island.

Andreas Muenchow, who is studying the Nares Strait between Greenland and Canada, said the ice sheet broke off early Thursday. He says the new ice island was discovered by Trudy Wohlleben of the Canadian Ice Service.

Not since 1962 has such a large chunk of ice calved in the Arctic, but researchers have noticed cracks in recent months in the floating tongue of the glacier.

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