Situation Report #10, 29. December 2019

Little Dome C - Beyond EPICA Drilling Site (75.29917 degS, 122.44516 degE)

Personnel: Saverio Panichi (ENEA), Michele Scalet (ENEA), Luc Piard (CNRS), Jakob Schwander (unibe), Thomas Stocker (unibe), Remo Walther (unibe), Massimo Frezzotti (U Roma 3), Riccardo Devescovi (Armi)

Weather at 8 am: sunny

Work at the drilling trench continued steadily and has reached a depth of about 4.5 m. The goal is to have an inclined trench of 7 m depth to accommodate the drilling tower. Snow blocks are cut out by chainsaw and then hauled up in a sledge by the Pistenbully. Massimo and Riccardo continued their visits to the GPS network around Little Dome C that is in operation since 3 years and measures the very slow movement of the ice sheet that is on the order of only 30 to 40 mm per year in this area. 

The casing of the Radix drill is firmly installed and we have now a 107.7 m tight access hole for the hydraulic drill. Today we have placed the many devices that are necessary for the deep drilling: highpressure pump, winch control and motor, chip separator unit, logging device and silicon oil reservoir. We have also logged the access hole, and the mean deviation from the vertical is less than 4°, an excellent outcome of the firn drilling.

LDC, 29.12.2019