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Science Requirements: Sediment Laden Lake Ice Drill
Authors: U.S. Science Community & IDPO
Year: 2015
Abstract:

The IDPO Long Range Science Plan 2014 identified science goals for ice drilling that spanned a wide range of science targets. For long term ecological studies in environmentally sensitive areas such as the Dry Valleys, the ability to drill through several meters of sediment-laden ice will enable science in a variety of disciplines. Currently ice fishing type gas augers are used in the sea ice and lake ice, which are not designed for this environment. A new drill is needed to create pilot holes which could then have a hot finger inserted in them to widen the hole. This pilot hole drill should also be useful for freeing instrument cables from the ice and accessing equipment deployed beneath the ice. Using mechanical drills has caused problems by cutting cables, and especially in the Dry Valley Lakes, drill bits do not stay sharp in the dirty ice. Hot water technology will allow a new tool to enable safe servicing of science instruments deployed in the lakes and ocean, and will allow for making more sample acquisition holes which is often a limiting factor in doing research in the sub-ice environments.

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