Icebergs look like towering, frozen mountains that drift through water. Their peaks may soar hundreds of feet above the surface and large ones cover as much area as major cities. When one of these blocks of ice flips over, it causes a great splash. In recent experiments at the University of Chicago, scientists have calculated that an overturning iceberg may release as much energy as some of the most destructive events on the planet.
“It’s easily as much energy as an atomic bomb,” says physicist Justin Burton, who designed and carried out the experiments.