Shelf ice, as found in Antarctica, refers to giant floating ice sheets that can span thousands of square kilometres. Pieces break off at their edges which form icebergs in the ocean. In order to more effectively predict these break-offs, in a process known as calving, a research team has developed mathematical models. On the basis of physical factors, it is claimed that these models can be used to predict when and where the ice may collapse. This is important particularly for research teams situated on the ice shelf.