In Antarctica there was a mysterious giant hole

A Giant Mysterious Hole Has Emerged In Antarctica And Scientists Still Don't Know The Reason

The unusual occurrence has left scientists scratching their heads and unable to explain the odd phenomenon.

A huge hole almost the size of the state of ME has opened up in the thick sea ice blanketing Antarctica's Weddell Sea.

The harsh winter in Antarctica makes it hard to find holes like this one, so it can be difficult to study them.

A giant hole has opened up in Antarctica that could possibly be as big as the state of ME (91,646 km²) and Lake Superior (82,103 km²). This year it opened on the 9th of September.

"If we didn't have a satellite, we wouldn't know it was there", Moore told Motherboard, adding it looks like someone "punched a hole" through the ice.

Polynyas are geographical areas of unfrozen sea within the ice pack. This might have resulted from the fact that the ocean currents lift the warmer waters from the ocean's depth up to the surface and thus the ice melts and ends up in making a huge hole.

Although it's safe to assume that this massive hole in sea ice is connected to the climate change, however, that may not be the case.

After closing back up, and remaining that way for roughly 40 years, it has re-opened.

Such areas of open ocean water in the midst of ice are called "polynya", and are usually found in warm coastal areas.

"While many climate models tend to produce such a large open ocean polynya, the feature was viewed more as a disruptive model glitch than a true phenomenon in the past", Torge Martin, a meteorologist and climate modeler at the Helmholtz Centre, told Earther. Moore said that this giant hole has been open for four months so far and he guessed that it would stay open for rest of the winter. But this polynya's reappearance is a mystery to scientists. As the surface water comes into contact with the Antarctic atmosphere, it cools and sinks, then heats up again and rises back toward the surface. But scientists are denying to conclude that this has happened due to global warming.

"If there were earlier occurrences, there is no record of them", said Willy Weeks, a retired sea ice geophysicist from the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, while commenting at the time of the polynya's re-emergence in 2016. "We don't really understand the long-term impacts this polynya will have".

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