Rare wispy ice formations streak across the sea near Antarctica in beautiful satellite images

Strong winds and unusual ocean currents helped paint a breathtaking icescape on the surface of the ocean near Antarctica, and the rare phenomenon was recently captured in a stunning satellite image. 

The incredible image was taken on Nov. 20 by the Operational Land Imager onboard Landsat 8, a collaboration between NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey, and was released on Dec. 8 by NASA’s Earth Observatory. The picture focuses on a channel of water about 3.7 miles (6 kilometers) across between the Ronne Ice Shelf — a permanent floating extension of the main Antarctic Ice Sheet, which birthed A-76, the world’s largest iceberg, in May — and a large chunk of sea ice in the Weddell Sea.