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

Project Title

A 1,500-meter ice core from South Pole

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Event Number:

Program Manager:
Dr. Julie Palais

ASC POC/Implementer:
Samina Ouda / Paul Sullivan / Leah Street

Principal Investigator

Dr. Murat Aydin

University of California Irvine
Earth System Science
Irvine, California

Project Web Site:


Supporting Stations: South Pole Station
Research Locations: Near station


The South Pole Ice Core (SPICE Core) project will collect a 1500-meter ice core from a site within five kilometers of the South Pole Station. The ice core will provide an environmental record spanning approximately 40,000 years that will be used to investigate the magnitude and timing of changes in climate and climate forcing through time. The target of 40,000 years includes the transition from the peak of the last glacial period when ice sheets were at their maximum extent, referred to as the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), to the present warm period (the Holocene) called an interglacial period. The main activities of this season are the shipping of all remaining ice cores (616 meters of core via three cold-deck LC-130 flights from South Pole to McMurdo Station) that are still onsite, disassembly of all remaining drilling and field equipment, including the drill tent, and concomitant shipping of equipment and cargo to the United States.

Field Season Overview

Participants will reside at the Elevated Station and will make day trip to the drill site. Their work during this, their third field season, will focus on shipping all remaining ice cores (616 meters) from South Pole to McMurdo Station on cold deck LC-130 aircraft. They will also disassemble the remaining drill equipment, core handling equipment, and drill tent, and prepare those items for retrograde to the US.

Deploying Team Members

  • Murat Aydin (PI)
  • Joshua Goetz
  • Emma Kahle
  • Joseph Souney Jr.