In this Monday, Jan. 14, 2019 aerial image taken from a drone video and provided by the City of Westbrook, Maine, a naturally occurring ice disc forms on the Presumpscot River in Westbrook, Maine. (Tina Radel/City of Westbrook via AP)

A giant disc of ice formed and fueled by currents in Maine’s Presumpscot River at the city of Westbrook is beginning to gain worldwide attention.

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Photos and video of the spinning frozen slab in the shape of an almost perfect circle spread across social media Tuesday with the encouragement of the city, which shared some impressive bird’s eye view images taken with the help of a drone.

Ice discs aren’t a new thing (neither are ice rectangles), but this one is a particularly large and dramatic-looking circle. The variation in ice shading makes the disc resemble the full moon, while others have compared it to a frozen crop circles or some odd creation of  “ancient alien” intelligence.

A number of factors combine to create such an odd sight, including currents in the river, the thickness and mass of the ice and the shape of the river itself. Fast-moving currents in the river can create a force called rotational shear that can break of a chunk of ice, cause it to spin and become ever more smooth and round as it grinds against nearby ice sheets. Looking at photos and videos of the Westbrook circle, it seems as though most of those elements are present.

The same elements that created the Westbrook ice disc can also conspire to create catastrophes.

In many northern rivers, including along the Yukon where I once lived, elbow bends are prime places for huge icebergs to pile up when the river ice breaks up in the spring. This can lead to the formation of ice dams that prevent water from flowing downriver, leading to flooding of shoreline communities upstream.

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Men use a boat in an attempt to break ice on the Royal River, Thursday, March 19, 2015, in Yarmouth, Maine. A state panel is examining the long lasting snowpack and black river ice to determine the potential for ice jam flooding. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)ASSOCIATED PRESS

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In this Monday, Jan.14,2019 aerial image drawn from a drone video and offered by the City of Westbrook, Maine, a naturally happening ice disc kinds on the Presumpscot River in Westbrook, Maine. (Tina Radel/City of Westbrook by means of AP)

A huge disc of ice formed and sustained by currents in Maine’s Presumpscot River at the(***************************** )city of Westbrook is starting to get around the world attention.

POST CONTINUES AFTER AD

Images and video of the spinning frozen piece in the shape of a nearly best circle spread throughout social networks Tuesday with the motivation of the city, which shared some remarkable bird’s eye view images taken with the assistance of a drone.

(**************************** )Ice discs aren’t a brand-new thing( neither are(**************************************** )ice rectangular shapes), however this one is an especially big and dramatic-looking circle. The variation in ice shading makes the disc look like the moon, while others have actually compared it to a frozen crop circles or some odd development of “ancient alien” intelligence.

A variety of elements integrate to produce such an odd sight, consisting of currents in the river, the density and mass of the ice and the shape of the river itself. Fast-moving currents in the river can produce a force called rotational shear that can break of a piece of ice, trigger it to spin and end up being ever more smooth and round as it grinds versus close-by ice sheets. Taking a look at pictures and videos of the Westbrook circle, it appears as though the majority of those aspects exist.

The very same aspects that produced the Westbrook ice disc can likewise conspire to produce disasters.

In numerous northern rivers, consisting of along the Yukon where I when lived(****************************** ), elbow bends are prime locations for big icebergs to accumulate when the river ice separates in the spring. This can result in the development of ice dams that avoid water from streaming downriver, causing flooding of coastline neighborhoods upstream.

POST CONTINUES AFTER AD

Guy utilize a boat in an effort to break ice on the Royal River, Thursday, March19,2015, in Yarmouth, Maine. A state panel is taking a look at the long-term snowpack and black river ice to identify the capacity for ice jam flooding. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty) ASSOCIATED PRESS

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In this Monday, Jan.14,2019 aerial image drawn from a drone video and offered by the City of Westbrook, Maine, a naturally happening ice disc kinds on the Presumpscot River in Westbrook, Maine.( Tina Radel/City of Westbrook by means of AP)

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A huge disc of ice formed and sustained by currents in Maine’s Presumpscot River at the city of Westbrook is starting to get around the world attention.

. POST CONTINUES AFTER AD

.

Images and video of the spinning frozen piece in the shape of a nearly best circle spread throughout social networks Tuesday with the motivation of the city, which shared some remarkable bird’s eye view images taken with the assistance of a drone.

.

Ice discs aren’t a brand-new thing (neither are ice rectangular shapes ), however this one is an especially big and dramatic-looking circle. The variation in ice shading makes the disc look like the moon, while others have actually compared it to a frozen crop circles or some odd development of “ancient alien” intelligence.

A variety of elements integrate to produce such an odd sight, consisting of currents in the river, the density and mass of the ice and the shape of the river itself. Fast-moving currents in the river can produce a force called rotational shear that can break of a piece of ice, trigger it to spin and end up being ever more smooth and round as it grinds versus close-by ice sheets. Taking a look at pictures and videos of the Westbrook circle, it appears as though the majority of those aspects exist.

The very same aspects that produced the Westbrook ice disc can likewise conspire to produce disasters.

In numerous northern rivers, consisting of along the Yukon where I when lived , elbow bends are prime locations for big icebergs to accumulate when the river ice separates in the spring. This can result in the development of ice dams that avoid water from streaming downriver, causing flooding of coastline neighborhoods upstream.

. POST CONTINUES AFTER AD

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Guy utilize a boat in an effort to break ice on the Royal River, Thursday, March 19, 2015, in Yarmouth, Maine. A state panel is taking a look at the long-term snowpack and black river ice to identify the capacity for ice jam flooding. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty) ASSOCIATED PRESS

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