Check out this two month time-lapse (and science lesson) of the R/V Nathaniel B. Palmer breaking ice in the Ross Sea, Antarctica. The video was shot and narrated by scientist and writer Cassandra Brooks.
Built in 1992, the 7,600-ton Nathaniel B. Palmer is capable of breaking 3 feet (1 meter) of ice at 3 knots. It is 308 feet (94 meters) long and has 12,720 horsepower.
The ship is operated by Edison Chouest Offshore and chartered by the United States National Science Foundation.