Equipment

IDDO maintains and operates existing ice drilling equipment and develops new systems with two principal foci:
1. to provide high quality ice cores, and
2. to produce boreholes that provide access to the interior and beds of ice sheets and glaciers for such purposes as embedding instruments, collecting gas samples, setting seismic charges, studying subglacial processes, and studying subglacial geology.



Intermediate Depth Drill
IDD

The South Pole Ice Core (SPICE) drilling operation. In the center of the photo is the Intermediate Depth Drill. At right a science team member is cleaning and preparing an extracted ice core for placement in a tube, for later transportation to the National Ice Core Lab in Denver, Colorado.
—Credit: Peter Rejcek, National Science Foundation

Background

In the IDPO Long Range Science Plan, the U.S. science community identified the retrieval of cores to depths of 1000-1500 meters for the IPICS 2k array and 40k network as a high priority. IDDO currently has drills capable of drilling to depths of approximately 300 meters with good core quality. The DISC Drill is capable of coring to depths of approximately 4000 meters with excellent core quality; the DISC Drill, however, is large and requires substantial logistics and infrastructure support which precludes its use for the coring of 1000-1500 and shallower holes. The science community, IDPO/IDDO, and NSF consequently agreed that a dedicated intermediate depth drill be developed.


Description

The U.S. Intermediate Depth Drill (IDD) is the next generation of the Danish Hans-Tausen Drill and Danish Deep Drill, with the capability of producing 2-meter long cores.

The IDD is sufficiently portable for coring at a wide variety of sites, and capable of retrieving 98 mm diameter core from the surface down to 1500 meters depth in two field seasons.

In addition to the drill itself, the IDD system includes the following ancillary items:

  • Core Processing System: core barrel puller, trays, vacuum, saw, and tables
  • Centrifuge to recover the drill fluid from the chips created by drilling the core
  • Drill fluid handling system
  • Vacuums to clean the drill cable and the core
  • Pilot hole system
  • A 4.9 m (16 ft) x 19.5 m (64 ft) x 2.8 m (9 ft) un-insulated Weatherport for housing the drilling and core processing operations

The IDD is designed and constructed to be transportable by Twin Otter or Bell 212 (or similar) helicopter. For field projects lasting more than one season, most equipment is left onsite to "winter-over". To drill to 1500 meters depth in two field seasons, a 10 person field-team for 24-hour per day drilling and core handling operations is required.


Type: Coring
Number in Inventory: 1
Max. Practical Depth: 1500-1900 m
Core Diameter: 98 mm
IDDO Driller Required?: yes, multiple (number of drillers required depends on desired drilling depth and drilling schedule)
Power Requirements/Source: Generator
Shipping Weight: 30,000 lbs (does not include drilling fluid, generator, generator fuel, or personnel)


Relevant Documents

Drawings & Photos

Below are some coneptual drawings as well as real images of the IDD.
* Click the images below to view higher-resolution versions. *

View of the South Pole Ice Core project wet drilling operation inside the drill tent. —Credit: Murat Aydin

Science team members work in the South Pole Ice Core (SPICE) drilling tent, cleaning the drill and measuring ice cores. —Credit: Peter Rejcek, National Science Foundation

View of the fiberglass outer core barrel with the inner core barrel/drill head containing a freshly drilled ice core. —Credit: Peter Rejcek, National Science Foundation


Inside the drill tent during the South Pole Ice Core project's 2014-15 field season. —Credit: Peter Rejcek, National Science Foundation

View of the South Pole Ice Core (SPICE) field camp showing the drill tent. —Credit: Peter Rejcek, National Science Foundation

Mindy Nicewonger at the core processing station inside the drill tent for the South Pole Ice Core project. The IDD recovers ice cores approximately 2-meters in length. The 2-meter long sections of core are then cut into 1-meter long sections so that they fit into the standard-sized insulated shipping container (ISC) boxes used by the US ice-coring community to transport ice cores. A dry-cut circular saw is used to make the cuts. —Credit: Murat Aydin


IDD System

Drill site layout. SolidWorks rendering of the un-insulated WeatherPORT for housing the drilling and core processing operations. The WeatherPORT tent is 19.5m L x 4.9m W x 2.8m H (64' x 16' x 9') and covers a trench that is 15m L x 4.6m W x 1.5m D (49' x 15' x 4.9').
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison


Drill site layout. SolidWorks rendering of the un-insulated WeatherPORT for housing the drilling and core processing operations. The WeatherPORT tent is 19.5m L x 4.9m W x 2.8m H (64' x 16' x 9') and covers a trench that is 15m L x 4.6m W x 1.5m D (49' x 15' x 4.9'). The drill slot will be 3m L x .9m W x 3.5m D (9.8' x 3' x 11.5').
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

SolidWorks rendering of Intermediate Depth Drill. The tilting tower and winch, shown above, is a brand new design by IDDO using a lot of new technological advances from the DISC Drill. The tower is modular allowing it to fit inside a Twin Otter or similar sized aircraft.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

Drill site layout. SolidWorks rendering of the un-insulated WeatherPORT for housing the drilling and core processing operations. The WeatherPORT tent is 19.5m L x 4.9m W x 2.8m H (64' x 16' x 9') and covers a trench that is 15m L x 4.6m W x 1.5m D (49' x 15' x 4.9'). The drill slot will be 3m L x .9m W x 3.5m D (9.8' x 3' x 11.5').
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison


WeatherPORT for housing the drilling and core processing operations. External view of the WeatherPORT tent.
—Credit: Tanner Kuhl, UW-Madison

Anti-torque section (without the three leaf-springs/blades). The top of the anti-torque section is to the right. The winch cable can be removed with the electrical connector still attached. The cable is secured using a modified EVERGRIP Termination from PMI Industries, Inc. A single adjustment moves all three leaf-springs/blades (not shown). The U-shaped piece on the top (right) of the anti-torque is a recovery loop that can be used to recover the sonde in case of a cable failure or stuck sonde.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

WeatherPORT for housing the drilling and core processing operations. Internal view of the WeatherPORT tent.
—Credit: Tanner Kuhl, UW-Madison


Anti-torque section (without the three leaf-springs/blades). The bottom of the anti-torque section is at the bottom of the photo. The anti-torque section contains a slip sensor that will tell the drillers if the outer barrel of the sonde is rotating within the borehole (only the inner barrel should rotate). The winch cable can be removed with the electrical connector still attached. The cable is secured using a modified EVERGRIP Termination from PMI Industries, Inc.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

Tower with crown sheave. The sheave circumference is 1.5 m. The cable payout is read by a magnetic ring encoder with a resolution greater than 0.5 mm. The sheave is supported by a pair of deep groove ball bearings with a static load rating of 32.0 kN for the pair, and a dynamic load rating of 59.2 kN for the pair. The maximum tension at 1,500 m and a 10 kN core break is 12.9 kN. The sheave's load pin has a 22.2 kN (5,000 lb) rating.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

Tower with drip pans, winch drum, and tower base. The tilting tower and winch is a brand new design by IDDO using a lot of new technological advances from the DISC Drill. The tower is composed of modular bolt-together 1m and 2m long sections. Also shown are the tower's stainless steel drip pans for catching any drill fluid that drips off of the sonde. The tower base is welded aluminum 6061 T6 frame with a 304 stainless steel sheet metal trunnion. The winch's power requirement is 230/460V 3-phase.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison


Tower, winch drum, actuator, and tower base. The electric actuator provides the tower with 93° of movement between vertical and horizontal positions. The actuator is controlled with a wired pendant (not shown). The winch drum is aluminum with a lebus grooved core, and has the capacity to hold 1600 meters of cable (not shown). The drum and cable together weigh 296kg (652 lbs). The drum alone is 82kg (180 lbs) and the cable alone is 214 kg (472 lbs).
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

Centrifuge. The centrifuge is used to separate the drill fluid from the chips. The centrifuge weights 440 lbs and has a footprint of 29.5" x 36.9". The volume of the chips chamber is 15.5 L.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

Tower actuator. In this photo the actuator is suspended by a forklift and load tested with 1,680 lbs. The actuator has a 17.6 kN (3,966 lb) continuous force rating.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison


Sonde. Filament-wound fiberglass epoxy outer core barrel tube.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

Sonde. Chips boosters. The boosters will be located in the chips chamber. They help move and pack the cuttings.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

Sonde. Inside of the outer core barrel tube. The tube was wound over a mandrel that had this geometry machined into it. Once the fiberglass has cured, the mandrel is pulled out and you have tube with these 24 grooves on the inside. The core barrel, with helical flights on its outside, fits into this tube. These grooves help the ice cuttings transport up the tube and into the chips chamber.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison


Sonde. Chips chamber with 7,200 1.4mm diameter holes drilled in it. This tube is used for drilling in a fluid filled borehole. The holes allow the drilling fluid to pass through while retaining the cuttings for transport back to the surface.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

Sonde. Close up of the holes in the chips chamber. There are 7,200 1.4mm diameter holes in the chips chamber. The holes allow the drilling fluid to pass through while the cuttings are retained for transport back to the surface.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison

Sonde. Hollow shaft assembly. This shaft connects to the output of the motor section, top of picture, and turns the core barrel and cutter head, bottom of picture. This assembly fits inside the chips chamber. The helical booster helps move and pack cuttings into the chips chamber.
—Credit: Jay Johnson, UW-Madison