2016-2017 Science Planning Summaries
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2016-2017 USAP Field Season
Project Detail

Project Title

Laser dust logging and fluorimetric scanning of SPICE

The field team prepares to deploy a laser dust logger in the Siple Dome borehole.
Photo by: Joseph Talghader


Event Number:

Program Manager:
Dr. Julie Palais

ASC POC/Implementer:
Samina Ouda / Paul Sullivan

Principal Investigator

Dr. Ryan Bay

University of California Berkeley
Walnut Creek, California


Supporting Stations: South Pole Station
Research Locations: Near station


The goal of this project is to examine the South Pole borehole using in-ice particle detectors to determine the stratigraphy in more detail than possible by other more traditional methods. The project’s borehole laser dust logger produces a more stratigraphically coherent environmental record than ice-core measurements, responds markedly to thin volcanic ash layers, and in deep, clear ice is a nearly direct tracer of ash and continental mineral dust. The logger reveals repeatable structures at the sub-centimeter depth scale for synchronizing records and, by comparing a borehole log from the South Pole Ice core (SPICE core, I-164-S) project with the existing South Pole data set, the project will be able to immediately determine the depth-age scale for the SPICE core and identify candidate ash horizons for sampling.

Field Season Overview

One participant will deploy to South Pole Station in the 2016-17 season. One person from T-150-M/S (Albert, Ice Drilling Design and Operations - IDDO) will be supporting I-164-S (Aydin, SPIceCore) and will then operate an IDDO-supplied winch at South Pole for this event. IDDO intends to use the Intermediate Depth Drill winch and tower, which is currently onsite at South Pole, to support this logging. The IDDO-supplied Intermediate Depth Logging Winch (IDLW) will be deployed as a backup winch for this project. The IDLW will need to be transported from South Pole to McMurdo when the sole participant for this group redeploys. All equipment and cargo will be removed from South Pole Station at the end of the season.

Deploying Team Members

  • Ryan Bay (PI)