By Hugues Goosse
We are on our main field camp for one week and thus fully devoted to the data collection.
The weather conditions are generally good up to now, with perfect visibility and relatively high temperatures. This is ideal conditions for the radar measurements of the snow and ice thicknesses and of the structure of the snow layers.
This also a good opportunity to sample different regions surrounding the camp and measure the density and properties of the top meters of the snow.
The ice drilling is progressing well. The 100 m limit was reached December 23rd and this was the opportunity for a small celebration. Unfortunately, the good weather is not ideal for ice coring. The temperature is too high during the day, with potential melting on surfaces facing the sun.
The drillers has thus now to work during ‘night’, when the sun is still above the horizon but the temperature is lower. This means that we have two teams, with different timing. We can still share some of the meals, although it is breakfast for some and dinners for the others.
We are indeed fully devoted to data collection but we still took some time for the small Christmas celebration. After our meal, we had a drink using some debris for the ice coring.
Below around 50 meters, air bubbles are sealed when snow becomes ice under the pressure. Those bubbles are for instance used to reconstruct past changes in atmospheric conditions.
When the ice melts in your glass, the bubbles are released, making a nice and delicate sound.