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Deep Core Drilling in Ice, Byrd Station, Antarctica
Authors: Patenaude RW, Marshall EW and Gow A
Year: 1959
Keywords: TR 60, ice drills, drilling--Antarctic regions, glaciers--Antarctic regions
Periodical/Journal: U.S. SIPRE Technical Report 60
Abstract: The preliminary results of core examinations and drill-hole temperature studies from November 1957-January 1958 are reported, and the drilling equipment and techniques are described. Drilling was accomplished with a Failing model 314 rotary skid-mounted well-drilling rig with a 38-ft mast, powered by a 43-bhp Buda gasoline engine. Two types of bits, both cutting a 3 7/8 - in. core and a 5 ¾ - in. hole, were used. The speed of rotation was varied from 40 - 75 rpm, and the rate of penetration ranged from 2.5 - 10 in/min. Compressed air was used as the drilling fluid. Good quality cores were obtained down to 1013 ft with a 98% recovery. Examination of the cores revealed the presence of a detailed stratigraphic sequence down to a depth of 400 ft, consisting of alternation layers of coarse and fine-grained snow associated with ice bands 4 mm thick, which appeared singly or in closely spaced groups at regular intervals. Below this depth the ice was very homogeneous, except for thin ice bands which persisted to the bottom. The mean densities for meter increments to a depth of 150 ft, densities determined from spot samples at 5 points from 400 - 721.5 ft, and drill - hole temperatures down to 1000 ft are tabulated.
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