Monday, May 6, 2013

Progress is made on permafrost cores…

We knew from previous experience that collection of permafrost cores from our tundra sites on the Barrow Environmental Observatory (BEO) would be challenging. David alerted us to this fact based on his trip to Barrow several weeks ago. One of our two crews spent the day retrieving a new, and solidly stuck, four foot, 2” diameter SIPRE core barrel from the unforgiving frozen tundra while the other crew managed to collect 6 shallow cores with the three foot 2”core barrel. Over the last few days our crew from LANL and UAF picked up the pace a bit and collected an additional 25 cores, 7 for Janet’s microbiology research and 18 multi-use (hydrologic properties, thermal properties, carbon content, isotopes) cores from Drained Thaw Lake Basins, DTLBs, of medium and old ages.

David kindly lent us his 3” SIPRE core barrel for today’s work, so we mobilized both crews again, comprised of Joel, Andy, Sasha, and Garrett, and attempted some tandem drilling in a rather unyielding high-centered polygon. None of this would have been possible without the great DGPS support from John who laid out the core locations in the field for the LANL-UAF drill team.

The LBNL team stopped by the Herman House for dinner and we spent time selecting sites from collection of cores from high-centered polygons. Tomorrow both the geophysics and coring teams head south to the DTLB transect where we will attempt to collect cores in the ancient and young DTLBs.

Sasha with bent core barrel.

Andy and Garrett clean Sasha's core flight while Joel drills on.

Joel with perfect core using Dave's 3" diameter SIPRE.