For those of you who have yet not seen this, this amazing phenomenon took place in Maine’s Presumpscot River where a sheet of ice, circular in shape, is slowly turning. The ice disc has attracted the attention of millions from all over the world once its pictures and videos went viral on media.
It has been called frozen ice disc and frozen crop circle. Some are even calling it an alien ship. However, according to a team of scientists; the ice disc is simply a natural phenomenon that is happening on a much larger scale. The rotating ice circles have been sighted in the US before as, but they were usually restrained to a size of 20-30 foot. On the other hand, the ice disc in the Presumscot River, located in the city of Westbrook, is about 100 meters wide. It is continuously rotating counterclockwise, and the size of it varies depending upon the temperature and sunlight. It is bigger in the morning time however shrinks when the sunlight becomes harsher, and the temperature rises.
The actual science that can explain the formation of these ice discs that rotate remains a mystery; many researchers are of the point of view that this phenomenon occurs because of the temperature change in the water. This temperature change causes the creation of a vortex under sheets of ice that then break free from the shore that is frozen. As the ice spins, the friction with the water, slush, and other ice pieces cause the edges to be shaved off thus giving it the shape of a circle.
Mark Battle, an associate professor of Physics at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, said, ‘It’s ådefinitely not being caused by the Coriolis force (that objects experience because of the Earth’s rotation. It looks marvelous; it’s a beautiful thing.
‘It might be a world-record size if anybody were keeping track,’ said Dr. Kenneth G. Libbrecht, a professor of physics at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California.