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Iceberg that sunk the Titanic was 100,000 years old and weighed 75million tonnes
The Titanic was sunk by a mega-iceberg that started its lethal voyage weighing 75million tonnes, a scientist believes.
Using computer modelling, Professor Grant Bigg also worked out the area where it was born.
And he reckons it was formed from snow that fell 100,000 years ago…aeons before causing the most famous maritime disaster in history.
His findings will be revealed today at the Cambridge science festival.
Prof Bigg, from Sheffield University, used observations taken in 1912, when the liner was lost on its maiden voyage and earlier. He added modern data about ocean currents and winds.
These pointed to the frozen Goliath probably originating in a small cluster of glaciers in southwest Greenland.
Prof Bigg said: “We have a computer model for calculating the paths of icebergs in any given year.
“We take what we know about ocean currents, then add meteorological readings for that year to calculate prevailing winds.
“Applying those techniques to 1912 points to the iceberg coming from around Qassimiut on Greenland’s southwest coast.”
Bigg also discovered that the iceberg was a monster.
Read more:Freemason conspiracy link to Titanic
When the Titanic, the largest vessel in the world, sank on April 15 killing 1,517, the berg was estimated at 400ft long and up to 100ft above the water, giving it a mass of 1.5m tonnes.
But the collision happened at a latitude of 41 degrees north, meaning it had floated from Greenland to a point further south than Cornwall, and must have been melting for months. Based on the shrinkage of similar icebergs, Prof Bigg estimates it began life 1,700ft long, with a mass of 75m tonnes.
He also points out how icebergs are a threat to ships. In 2007 the cruise ship Explorer sank in Antarctica’s Weddell Sea after an iceberg strike.
And the threat is growing, with the average number reaching north Atlantic shipping areas rising to 500 a year. In 2014, 1,500 were recorded.
Andrew Fleming, from the British Antarctic Survey, uses satellites to track bergs in the Arctic and Antarctic. He said: “The past 10 to 20 years have seen a steady rise in the number.”
The tragedy of the Titanic, pride of the White Star Line, has inspired countless books and several films. In 1985 the wreck was found two miles down off Newfoundland.
The iceberg that sank the Titanic on April 14, 1912, in which at least 1,517 people died, was estimated to be 400 feet in length and 100 feet above the ocean surface, giving it 1.5m tonnes in estimated size. (File photo)
The giant iceberg responsible for sinking the Titanic on its maiden voyage may have originated in southwest Greenland in snow that fell about 100,000 years ago, scientists say.
Grant Bigg from UK’s Sheffield University combined observations obtained from 1912 — the year of the Titanic’s sinking in the Atlantic Ocean — and modern data on ocean currents and winds.
Bigg used a computer model which can calculate the icebergs’ paths in any given year, the ‘Sunday Times’ reported. «We take what we know about ocean currents, then add in meteorological readings for that year to calculate the prevailing winds,» he said.
Applying those methods to 1912 points to the iceberg emerging from around Qassimiut on the southwest Greenland coast, he added.
The iceberg that sank the Titanic on April 14, 1912, in which at least 1,517 people died, was estimated to be 400 feet in length and 100 feet above the ocean surface, giving it 1.5m tonnes in estimated size.
The iceberg, however, had been melting into the water for months prior to the incident. According to Bigg, it was around 1,700 feet long and 75m tonnes in weight.
Bigg’s research suggests 1912 was a bad year, with icebergs reported floating much further south than normal.
«The presence of extensive ice was widely reported prior to and following the collision,» Bigg wrote in his new book, Icebergs.
Bigg said why the number reaching shipping lanes should vary so much from year to year is unclear, because so many factors — wind direction, sea currents and temperature changes — are involved.
One idea is that the Titanic iceberg broke from its glacier in 1908 when a mild winter accelerated melting and floated south during the much colder winter of 1911-12.
RMS Titanic was a British passenger liner that sank in the North Atlantic Ocean in the early morning of April 15, 1912 after colliding with an iceberg during its maiden voyage from Southampton in UK to New York City in US.
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Each iceberg is unique, moulded by its individual journey through the polar seas. They float low in the water due to the sheer weight of the ice, which is why the tip of an iceberg is no measure of what lies beneath.
The International Ice Patrol has now traced where the iceberg that sank Titanic originated.
Greenland breeding ground
Eighty-five percent of all icebergs found in the North Atlantic come from the ice fjords on Greenland’s west coast, and the ice shelf in Ilulissat is the most likely birthplace of the Titanic iceberg.
The iceberg that sank Titanic would have started life as a snowflake 15,000 years earlier. Snow that falls at the centre of the Greenland ice sheet is at first fluffy and not particularly dense, but it compacts with depth to become a third of its original size. Tens of metres below the surface it becomes so dense it turns to solid glacial ice.
An immense iceberg
In 1909, Ilulissat was producing just one or two of these huge icebergs each year. The iceberg that sank Titanic would have been up to a mile long, displacing around a billion tonnes of seawater.
It would have taken the iceberg over a year to edge its way down the 40-mile fjord. The relentless jostling of other bergs on this journey would have battered and eroded it, reducing it to half its birth weight.
Controlled by ocean currents
By 1911 the Titanic iceberg would have been picked up on the powerful west Greenland current and dragged down the north-eastern coast of Canada. It would have been huge, the above water ice alone rivalling the Colosseum in size.
Over a thousand miles from its birthplace and around a fortnight after its collision with Titanic, the last piece of the iceberg disappeared into the Atlantic ocean.
By Alasdair Wilkins, io9
Exactly one hundred years ago Sunday, an ocean liner struck a block of ice and sank in the North Atlantic. The story of the ocean liner has been told hundreds of times. This story is about the block of ice.
[partner id=»io9″]The photos you see up top and down on the left are quite possibly the only known photographic evidence of the actual iceberg that struck the Titanic. Understandably, nobody had bothered to snap any photographs while the ship was actually sinking, so it’s impossible to make an absolutely confirmed positive identification. But both photographs feature the telltale sign of a collision with a ship, and likely a recent one at that: a streak of red paint.
The photo up top was taken by the chief steward of the German ocean liner SS Prinz Adalbert, which on Apr. 15 was sailing through the North Atlantic mere miles away from where the Titanic had sunk the night before. At the time, the chief steward hadn’t yet learned of the Titanic‘s fate, so he wasn’t even on the lookout for icebergs. He simply spotted a streak of red paint along the iceberg’s base, which most likely meant a ship had collided with it in the last 12 hours.
This next photo was taken by a Captain De Carteret of the Minia, one of a few cable ships – vessels ordinarily used to lay deep sea cables, such as those for telecommunications – sent to the site of the shipwreck to recover corpses and debris. The captain claimed this was the only iceberg in the area, and the red paint was again a clear sign that a ship had recently struck it. There’s some disagreement over whether this was the only iceberg in the area, but it certainly seems likely that something had hit it, and the odds are good that that something was the Titanic.
If you were to trace the story of the Titanic to its earliest human origins, you couldn’t really go much further back than 1907, when the White Star Lines first drew up plans to build the three largest ocean liners the world had even seen: Olympic, Titanic, and Gigantic, which was later renamed Britannic and sank in the Mediterranean during World War I. From conception to sinking, the Titanic really only lasted about five years, although obviously its memory has endured far longer.
But by comparison, the iceberg began its slow journey to the North Atlantic over three thousand years ago. Again, we can only guess at the exact details, but the story likely began with snowfall on the western coast of Greenland somewhere around 1,000 BCE. After a few months, this snow has been turned into a more compacted form called firn, which then over subsequent decades is compressed into dense ice by the weight of newer snow on top of it.
The frozen water in these glaciers is slowly forced further westward toward the sea. When they finally reach the coast of the Arctic Ocean, the lapping tides break off chunks of the ice, and icebergs are calved from the glacier, some 30 centuries after their source water was first deposited. The iceberg that sank the Titanic began its journey as a rough contemporary of King Tutankhamun, entire civilizations rising and falling while it made its slow march to infamy.
But once all that’s done, the iceberg’s life was a short one. We know that because the Titanic sank in the North Atlantic, rather than the Arctic, which means the currents must have taken it far south of where it was calved. Starting on the Greenland coast, it would have moved from Baffin Bay to the Davis Strait and then onto the Labrador Sea and, at last, the Atlantic.
The Titanic iceberg was one of the lucky ones, so to speak, as the vast, vast majority of icebergs melt long before they reach that far south. Of the 15,000 to 30,000 icebergs calved each years by the Greenland glaciers, probably only about 1 percent of them ever make it all the way to the Atlantic. On Apr. 15, 1912, the iceberg was some 5,000 miles south of the Arctic Circle.
The water temperature on the night of the Titanic sinking was thought to be about 28 degrees Fahrenheit, just below freezing. Such a temperature was of course lethally cold for all those passengers who had been forced to take to the open water to escape the sinking ship.
But such temperatures are far too warm to sustain icebergs for very long. The average life expectancy of an iceberg in the North Atlantic is only about two to three years from calving to melting. That means it likely broke off from Greenland in 1910 or 1911, and was gone forever by the end of 1912 or sometime in 1913. In all likelihood, the iceberg that sank the Titanic didn’t even endure to the outbreak of World War I, a lost splash of freshwater mixed in imperceptibly with the rest of the North Atlantic.
The iceberg that sank the Titanic is thought to be 100,000 years old, according to scientists who have been tracing the origins of the colossal lump.
The staggering discovery was uncovered after researchers crosschecked data on ocean currents and witness descriptions from 1912.
Having spent time carefully tracing the iceberg, scientists now believe its originates from snow which fell 100,000 years which formed glaciers south-west of Greenland.
The staggering size of the lump of ice, thought to have been 100ft above the water, may have been 1,700ft long when it first formed
When the Titanic smashed into the side of the iceberg in 1912, the iceberg is thought to have measured 400 feet in length, with a mass of 1.5m tonnes.
The staggering size of the lump of ice, thought to have been 100ft above the water, may have been 1,700ft long when it first formed.
Scientists believe that the huge iceberg is likely to have drifted from the Qassimiut on the southwest coast of Greenland.
‘We have a computer model for calculating the paths of icebergs in any given year,’ said Grant Bigg, professor of earth system science at Sheffield University told The Sunday Times.
When the Titanic smashed into the side of the iceberg in 1912, the iceberg is thought to have measured 400 feet in length, with a mass of 1.5m tonnes
Scientists believe that the huge iceberg is likely to have drifted from the Qassimiut on the southwest coast of Greenland
The sinking of the Titanic on its maiden voyage to New York City left 1,517 people dead on 14 April 1912.
The public reacted in complete shock to the sinking of the largest ship afloat at the time, with many people criticising the safety measures and regulations of the ship.
Icebergs are created when layers of snow form on top of each other and create an icy glacier. When part of the glacier breaks off, it forms an floating iceberg.
His friendship with Shahs Of Sunset co-star Mercedes Javid turned into a bitter feud with him leaking that she can’t have any more children in a social media post after she had a difficult delivery with son Shams in April.
Weeks later, Rexa Farahan claimed that her husband Tommy Feight threatened to kill him and alleged that he vandalized his home he shares with his husband Adam Farahan.
And Reza has been granted a three-year restraining order against Tommy after originally obtaining a temporary one in May, one day after the alleged vandalism, according to E! News.
Former friends: His friendship with Shahs Of Sunset co-star Mercedes Javid turned into a bitter feud with him leaking that she can’t have any more children in social media post after she had a difficult delivery with son Shams in April; pictured July 17, 2019 in Beverly Hills
The outlet reported Tommy must keep at least 100 yards away from Reza for the next three years.
The restraining order comes five months after he originally filed the paperwork for it — one day after the May 19 alleged incident where Reza claimed Tommy vandalized his property and ‘called and said he was going to kill me.’
The day after the alleged incident, Reza went to a Van Nuys-area courthouse to ‘file some paperwork.’
At the time, E! had reported that LAPD confirmed that ‘officers took a report after an act of vandalism occurred at the address.’
Drama: Weeks later, Rexa Farahan claimed that her husband Tommy Feight threatened to kill him and alleged that he vandalized his home he shares with his husband Adam Farahan; Mercedes pictured with Tommy on October 24, 2018 in Beverly Hills
Update: And Reza has now obtained a three year restraining order against Tommy after originally obtaining a temporary one in May, one day after the alleged vandalism, according to E! News
Mercedes gave birth via Cesarean section on Wednesday, April 17; they named him Shams Francis Feight.
She was admitted into the ICU after suffering from multiple complications.
Tommy told fans on Instagram following the birth that it was ‘the worst night of my life’: ‘My wife had a ton of complications. She was in surgery for like five hours. They didn’t tell me nothing. But they’re amazing at Cedars. They saved her life. She’s still in ICU, she still hasn’t held her baby yet. That should probably happen later today, though.’
Weeks after giving birth, Mercedes said that Reza blocked her on social media while she was in the ICU due to extreme blood loss, according to her interview with TooFab.
She said that while she is ‘in love’ with her son and feels super ‘blessed’ and ‘happy,’ the star said ‘At a time where I want and should have my friends around me and supporting me, they were off prioritizing other things. Nothing should come before — especially if you have 30 years of friendship — you don’t get blocked on social when you’re in ICU, people should turn up for you.’
Mom: Mercedes gave birth via Cesarean section on Wednesday, April 17; they named him Shams Francis Feight
Trying time: She was admitted into the ICU after suffering from multiple complications
When asked why she thinks he blocked her, Mercedes said that she has a ‘really good idea about why, but it’s not a good reason. I’ll take care of it when I can. Hopefully I’ll be back on set to shoot season eight.’
She said to Reza: ‘I’ve been loyal to you for 30 years, I’ve never faltered, there’s never been an exception to that, so show me the same.’
Two months before giving birth, Mercedes revealed that she had to stay at the hospital overnight following a surgery she had to get done — she underwent cervical cerclage surgery after doctors found her cervix was measuring too small, which could be a ‘high risk’ for a miscarriage, according to People.
During her feud with Reza, things took a nasty turn as he leaked a host of text messages shared between himself and her husband Tommy.
In one message, sent from MJ’s phone, posted to Reza’s Instagram followers to see, Tommy tells Reza that complications during the birth of their son, MJ will no longer be able to have children.
Going too far: During her feud with Reza, things took a nasty turn as he leaked a host of text messages shared between himself and her husband Tommy
‘My wife had some complications she’s in ICU — she lost a lot of blood — they had to remove her uterus and 1 of her [Fallopian] tubes so she can’t have any more kids.’
Soon after, Reza took to his Instagram to apologize for posting the private message: ‘I want to make an apology and clarify something,t hen sign off. In my haste to get the timeline of events out, I included a text w/sensitive information, that was sent to me by Tommy, using MJ’s phone.’
He continued: ‘For that I’m truly sorry. I had forgotten that was in there and genuinely wish I could go back and cut that one out. Unfortunately it’s out and I’m very sorry.’
Adding: ‘Our lives are more important than a feud. I can’t explain how unsettling it is to feel unsafe in our own home, so we’re signing off.’
Too little, too late: Soon after, Reza took to his Instagram to apologize for posting the private message
The last line is referring to an alleged death threats Reza received from Tommy following the accidental disclosure and vandalism of the home he shares with husband Adam Neely.
The property damage led to courts approving a restraining order filed by Reza against Tommy.
In May, Reza told People that he can’t ever be friends with Mercedes again because ‘she sent her little minion to come do her dirty work, then, in my opinion she sent her husband to come vandalize my property and threaten my life.’
The minion he is referring to a apparently a friend of Mercedes, who Reza alleged was sent by her to destroy his marriage to Adam.
‘She sent her gay minion to accuse my husband of sexual harassment and infidelity,’ he ranted in his Instagram story.
In July, Mercedes confirmed that Reza’s leak about her not being able to have any more kids was true.
The reality star shared a nude snap of herself from her pregnancy shoot with a lengthy message talking about her health post baby and that she ‘can never carry a baby again.’
Mercedes said: ‘Since I can never carry a baby again, I’m extremely grateful to those who made sure I had this shoot, and keep this memory forever. My body is still healing from pregnancy, my heart is fragile and vulnerable. I wish I had the compassion I have now, as a new mom, all of my life.’
She continued: ‘But now I am learning to have a deeper appreciation about why growth in life is such an important gift. I want to be better, and stronger. Lately, most days are a challenged. #tbc,’ adding a prayer emoji.
She credited Shannon Laurine as the photographer.
Mercedes posed on her side completely naked — with her baby bump on display in the throwback snap.
During that time, Tommy also pleaded not guilty to trespassing and vandalism charges, E! reported.
Honoring her dad: They named their son Shams after her late father, who died in 2018
Adele continued to show off her incredible weight loss as she cosied up to her good pal Drake during his 33rd birthday bash.
Showcasing her newly svelte figure in an off the shoulder black velvet gown, the hitmaker, 31, couldn’t wipe the smile from her face as she partied the night away.
Drake appeared thrilled in her company of the Hello hitmaker, who gushed over the ‘kind and funny’ birthday boy in a sweet Instagram snap.
Adele looked incredible as she stepped out to celebrate Drake’s birthday at the Goya studios in Hollywood on Wednesday.
The beauty shared a playful photo from the evening’s events, with the caption: ‘I used to cry but now I sweat.’
She also added the hashtag #gingermckenna’ — in homage to the iconic villain from the 1995 film Casino, played by Sharon Stone.
The star continued: ‘Happy birthday to one of the kindest and funniest people I’ve met @champagnepapi.’
Newly-svelte: Adele looked incredible as she stepped out to celebrate Drake’s birthday at the Goya studios in Hollywood on Wednesday
Adele and Drake has been low-key friends for a long time. Back in February it was reported that the superstar pair visited a vape lounge and rented out an entire 32-lane bowling alley in Studio City during a night out and ate at Jerry’s famous deli.
This came months after the singer made an unexpected appearance at his show.
In October last year, Drake, who refers to himself as Champagne Papi on social media, was said to be thrilled after Adele watched him perform at a Los Angeles show without his prior knowledge.
Taking to Twitter shortly after his performance, Adele raved: ‘Oii Champagne Papi blew my mind tonight! Best production I’ve ever seen hands down and way up there with one of my favorite shows of all time. Huge love.’
Returning the compliment, a clearly stunned Drake later thanked the singer after reposting her tweet on Instagram.
Captioning the post, he wrote: ‘Oiiiiiii don’t f***ing get me gassed right now I love this woman and she came to the show. Thank god nobody told me I would have been SHOOK (sic)’
Birthday boy: Adele added a gushing caption on her latest Instagram snap, which read: ‘Happy birthday to one of the kindest and funniest people I’ve met @champagnepapi’
Meanwhile, Adele’s sensational weight loss also caught attention during the evening, with the star reportedly losing more than a stone in weight after taking up Pilates.
It was reported in June earlier this year that Adele’s Reformer Pilates class has given her a new lease of life as she has lost more than a stone in weight after attending the workout with pal Ayda Field.
A source told The Sun: ‘Adele has been out enjoying herself and she sees that as her priority at the moment, along with being a mum to Angelo.
Wow: Adele’s sensational weight loss also caught attention during the evening, with the star reportedly losing more than a stone in weight after taking up Pilates
Showstopping: The Oscar winner looked sensational in her form-fitting gown (the star is pictured R in 2016)
She has been loving her new workout regime and it really works for her.
‘It’s a bonus that she has shifted some weight. Her mates are glad she’s letting loose and there’s nothing but good feelings towards her. She’s got a new lease of life.’
Meanwhile, during the birthday extravaganza, there was no sign of Adele’s rumoured new boyfriend, Grime artist Skepta, 37.
The pair are said to have been on a string of dates following her split from husband Simon Konecki, 45.
Where is he? Meanwhile, during the birthday extravaganza, there was no sign of Adele’s rumoured new boyfriend, Grime artist Skepta, 37
More To Explore
Now you know how big the iceberg was that the Titanic hit, why not read even more facts about the iceberg, find out about the victims of the sinking, and discover where the ship sank.