See this London-sized iceberg for the first time

The massive iceberg known as A81 broke off from the Brunt Ice Shelf in Antarctica in January
The iceberg A81, shortly after it broke off of Antarctica. (Copernicus/Sentinel-1/BBC)

Icebergs can come in many sizes.

There are ones the size of cars. There are ones the size of skyscrapers. You can even find ones the size of stadiums.

And then there are ones the size of an entire city!

Meet A81, an enormous iceberg the size of the Greater London area (just under 1,600 sq. km, or 600 sq. mi.). This mighty berg calved, or broke off, from the Antarctic Ice Shelf back in January. Recently, the British Antarctic Survey released the first aerial footage ever of the ice-land.

It's huge, especially when you remember that we only see the very top of the iceberg. About 90 percent of the berg is underwater. Try to imagine that!

On the move

Calving is a normal part of life for ice in the polar regions. But that said, the bergs are rarely as huge as this one, and it certainly affects life around it.

Years ago, sensors predicted that the iceberg would eventually break away. So in 2016, the entire Antarctic Halley Research Station moved 23 km so that it would no longer be on the future A81 iceberg. Good idea!

As huge as A81 is, it is only the second largest iceberg currently floating around the ocean. A76a is twice the size! (And then there was this monstrous iceberg from 2017, which has since broken into smaller pieces.)

But none of that makes A81 any less impressive. See it from the air in the video below.

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