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- (inserted: 28.12.2020 15:39)
Logging of the bottom section of the borehole by the Robertson Geo folk starts today.Logging of the bottom section of the borehole by the Robertson Geo folk starts today. So does the first snowfall of the year. Photo credit: Dominika Sz?cs
- (inserted: 28.12.2020 15:33)
Exquisite laminated carbonate bed developed within the red playaExquisite laminated carbonate bed developed within the red playa lake sediments of the Brooks Mill Mudstone Formation, in the Upper Triassic. These beds show very well developed lithological rhythms that are likely forced by Milankovitch cycles in the same manner as the marine Lias rocks that are the primary focus of our project. Photo credit: Dominika Sz?cs
- (inserted: 28.12.2020 15:22)
Christmas Day at the drill site many thanks toChristmas Day at the drill site – many thanks to our neighbours the Holy Farm Garden Centre and Nursery for the donation of the Christmas Tree and all at Platt Farm for their hospitality during the project. The Christmas cake went down particularly well in the mess room. Photo credit: Dominika Sz?cs
- (inserted: 23.12.2020 13:47)
Curated cores stacking up in the core container waitingCurated cores stacking up in the core container waiting to be transported to the National Core Repository at the British Geological Survey in Nottingham. Each1-metre-long core section is carefully marked to show the order and the right way up using a variety of different signs (a “belt-and-braces” approach). Photo credit: Domi Szucs.
- (inserted: 23.12.2020 13:44)
Another day, another core (or two).Another day, another core (or two). Here the full 6-m long core barrel is being lowered to the catwalk where the core catcher (the device that holds the core in place) is loosened. The cores are then transported around the site to the core core lab where they are cut into sections of a manageable length. Photo credit: Jim Riding.
- (inserted: 20.12.2020 16:55)
As hoped for we have new core!As hoped for we have new core! More lovely grey mudstone which is just what we want. Ammonites suggest we are in the upper Hettangian now, approaching 500 m before midnight, and well on the way towards the Triassic.
- (inserted: 19.12.2020 17:44)
A new dawn at the Prees drill site.A new dawn at the Prees drill site. The Top Drive is now fixed, and we are looking forward to renewed coring at about lunchtime today. Our hope is that the open hole is still in good condition and we can proceed without further issues.
- (inserted: 08.12.2020 15:24)
A quiet day at Prees whilst we wait for repairs to be completed.A quiet day at Prees whilst we wait for repairs to be completed. We expect this to take just over a week and look forward to coring the last part of the hole over the following couple of weeks. Time to unpack the Christmas lights.
- (inserted: 07.12.2020 12:24)
During the night we had an issue with theDuring the night we had an issue with the Top Drive, which is the motor that turns the drill string and the bit. The problem has not been solved yet. We have pulled the string back up inside the metal-cased hole whilst the problem is investigated. This could be a little while.....
- (inserted: 04.12.2020 17:02)
Coring rate still high and we are passed 400 m deep today as the sun rises across the drill site.Coring rate still high and we are passed 400 m deep today as the sun rises across the drill site.
- (inserted: 02.12.2020 16:31)
Coring rate has improved dramatically over the last coupleCoring rate has improved dramatically over the last couple of days, and the rocks recovered continue to be exactly what we hoped for, dark grey mudstones with many fossils, and apparently rhythmical changes in colour and grainsize. Shown here is one of the many layers of the oyster-like bivalve Gryphaea that we are passing through as we go back in time.
- (inserted: 01.12.2020 18:51)
Ammonites in cross section at about 300 m depth.Ammonites in cross section at about 300 m depth. Ammonite identifications provide one of the most important ways to give these rocks a relative geological age. Ultimately, the team aims to tie together all major methods in stratigraphy to come up with a really detailed and accurate numerical timescale for the Early Jurassic. The fact that the core contains abundant ammonite fossils augurs well for the follow-up science.
- (inserted: 30.11.2020 12:34)
Coring ahead, but slow going.Coring ahead, but slow going. The rocks are similar to the age-equivalent strata in North Yorkshire – the Siliceous Shale – and so a clue to the tough coring may be in the name. Next set of strata in Yorkshire going down is the Calcareous Shale, so fingers crossed that the stratigraphy is similar in Shropshire.
- (inserted: 30.11.2020 07:28)
Scraping the frost off the car windscreens after theScraping the frost off the car windscreens after the day shift on a cold night with clear skies and moonlight. Coring ahead. (Photo: Claire Belcher)
- (inserted: 30.11.2020 07:14)
Coring resumes for the deep section of the hole.Coring resumes for the deep section of the hole. We successfully recovered cement from the bottom of the hole, followed by intact previously uncored formation. A ‘leak off test’ was also successfully completed, and we are now coring ahead again. The recovered cement will make a nice paperweight.
- (inserted: 30.11.2020 09:25)
The drill site at sunrise seen from the hillThe drill site at sunrise seen from the hill on which much of Prees village sits (the hill is capped by upper Pliensbachian ‘Marlstone Rock’). Coring is still paused while we sort out some technical issues.......
- (inserted: 25.11.2020 07:59)
The Blowout Preventer now installed and ready for testing.The Blowout Preventer now installed and ready for testing. After this operation is completed, a short core will be taken before the formation is pressure-tested. Following that, coring will commence again in earnest.
- (inserted: 25.11.2020 07:57)
The next pair of scientists arrive on site ready to start their nightshift when we begin coring...The next pair of scientists arrive on site ready to start their nightshift when we begin coring again. The scientists offices are the two stacked containers on the right. Photo credit: Jim Riding.
- (inserted: 22.11.2020 06:19)
JET scientists with Prees core in the BGS coreJET scientists with Prees core in the BGS core scanning facility (CSF) working on core scanning in parallel with ongoing coring activity at Prees. The first results from the multi-sensor core logger are beginning to be compiled and look very promising. X-ray flourecence scans, giving elemental abundances, will probably be started on Monday.
- (inserted: 20.11.2020 14:04)
First cut core from Prees waiting for fossil collection and XRF scanning.First cut core from Prees waiting for fossil collection and XRF scanning. The pictured section is from c. 35.8 m depth.
- (inserted: 18.11.2020 14:18)
Core scanning of the first Prees core has started at the Core scanning Facility (CSF) at the BGS.Core scanning of the first Prees core has started at the Core scanning Facility (CSF) at the BGS. Geophysical measurements including gamma density, magnetic susceptibility and natural gamma as well as radiographic images are compiled for each core section. Geophysical core scanning data will be compared with geophysical downhole logging data obtained on-site in order to inform core-log-integration.
- (inserted: 18.11.2020 07:14)
Geophysical logging was completed successfully this morning.Geophysical logging was completed successfully this morning. Shown here are an array of the slim-line tools used for making measurements in the borehole. Tools used included caliper, temperature, acoustic televiewer, sonic, resistivity, spectral gamma ray, magnetic susceptibility, density and neutron porosity. There was a little doubt that the caliper was working at first, but this turned out to due to very good hole condition.
- (inserted: 17.11.2020 08:34)
Overnight the rig crew pulled up the casing forOvernight, the rig crew pulled up the casing for the top of the borehole, and now the borehole is being logged by Robertson Geo who are undertaking this work in place of the Leibniz Institute of Applied Geophysics (LIAG). The LIAG scientists were unfortunately unable to travel because of the pandemic. Downhole logging – whereby the geophysical and geochemical properties of the borehole wall are measured by various instruments on a long wire – is estimated to take 24 hours to complete. Coring is due to resume in about seven days’ time.
- (inserted: 15.11.2020 17:48)
Star of the Sinemurian?Star of the Sinemurian? This crinoid ossicle (part of a ‘sea lily’) occurs in strata with ammonites that are probably of Sinemurian age. Just below this level we cored a ~15 m thick siltstone with wonderful trace fossil assemblages.
- (inserted: 15.11.2020 17:46)
The first Prees core has arrived at the BritishThe first Prees core has arrived at the British Geological Survey ready to be curated by the professional BGS Core Store team at the National Geological Repository (NGR). Nineteen core runs with approximately 90-100 m of core will be labelled, databased, and stacked onto pallets ready to be delivered to the Core Scanning Facility (CSF) for geophysical and geochemical core scanning.
- (inserted: 13.11.2020 08:20)
Today the core drilled so far was loaded upToday the core drilled so far was loaded up and taken to the British Geological Survey ready for scanning and splitting. Drilling is progressing well, and we are past 150 metres. (Photo: Amy Elson.)
- (inserted: 12.11.2020 07:34)
Jet scientists preparing for geochemical and geophysical scanning ofJet scientists preparing for geochemical and geophysical scanning of core from Prees using archive material from the Llanbedr (Mochras Farm) drill core in Wales. Thanks to the help of the Core Scanning Facility (CSF) team, effective workflow procedures and scanning parameters were established. The aim is to start scanning Prees core next week.
- (inserted: 11.11.2020 07:55)
An example of the long intact cores recovered from about 50 m down to 100 m.An example of the long intact cores recovered from about 50 m down to 100 m. The lithology here is shelly dark grey mudstone, likely of Early Pliensbachian age, and the core recovery for the last 50 m has been 99.6% of the drilled section. The common belemnite, bivalve, and brachiopods fossils will be analysed as archives of past seawater geochemistry.
- (inserted: 09.11.2020 18:28)
Coring progressing well with intact continuous core and our first ammonite.Coring progressing well with intact continuous core and our first ammonite. We should be at ~100 m by the end of the day. (Photo credit: Amy Elson)
- (inserted: 07.11.2020 16:10)
We have our first (short) core.We have our first (short) core. We only advanced 0.8 m (intentionally, we’re still getting used to the rig) and recovered about 0.6 m of Jurassic mudstone. This is essentially what we expect to recover throughout. Pictured: Dr. Kara Bogus (University of Exeter).
- (inserted: 07.11.2020 16:08)
Science team in (and around) the core lab container.Science team in (and around) the core lab container. We are now working 24 h, which means two shifts of scientists, each working 12 h. Communication at the cross-over is going to be more challenging in light of the pandemic, but we are still able to go over some important core handling procedures to ensure consistency across the 24 h workday. Right to left: Professor Stephen Hesselbo (Project PI; University of Exeter), Ailsa Roper (PhD student; University of Leeds) and Prof. Robert Newton (Project Co-I; University of Leeds).
- (inserted: 07.11.2020 16:06)
Rig 18 lit up early for Guy Fawkes night, the first core for Prees imminent…Rig 18 lit up early for Guy Fawkes night, the first core for Prees imminent…
- (inserted: 07.11.2020 16:04)
The science team is housed in offices on site.The science team is housed in offices on site. These are basically stacked containers that include desks, chairs and heating. We’re busy getting our procedures finalized to receive core imminently.
- (inserted: 07.11.2020 16:00)
Our posters are prominently displayed on the entrance gate to the Prees site.Our posters are prominently displayed on the entrance gate to the Prees site. We’ve had a lot of local interest thus far and hope this provides a good introduction of what we attempting to recover and why
- (inserted: 07.11.2020 15:57)
Even though we cannot host large groups of peopleEven though we cannot host large groups of people on site, you can always stop by the drill site and see where we are currently coring. We will be updating the poster each day with coring progress, lithology and any other features (concretions, fossils), and comparing what we see to what was drilled at nearby Prees-1 and our predicted stratigraphy.
- (inserted: 02.11.2020 08:08)
How do we recover the Jurassic rocks from Prees that JET project scientists will use for study?How do we recover the Jurassic rocks from Prees that JET project scientists will use for study? Here is a basic explanation of the scientific coring process, and is the second (of three) posters to be featured at the Prees site entrance.
- (inserted: 02.11.2020 07:52)
As we are unable to host a visitor’s stationAs we are unable to host a visitor’s station on site at Prees, we have been busy generating some posters to attach to the site gates to allow passersby (and we have enthusiastic local interest so far!) to read a bit about what we are doing here, what we anticipate recovering, and how. The post today depicts what material we anticipate recovering from Prees, based on regional geology and previous drilling in the area.
- (inserted: 29.10.2020 21:36)
Want to know more about the JET project in general and the Prees borehole in particular?Want to know more about the JET project in general and the Prees borehole in particular? We’re arranging to have some information available at the site entrance for members of the general public (in lieu of a visitors’ station within the site), as we’ve had enthusiatic local interest in the Jurassic sediment records of the area.
- (inserted: 28.10.2020 09:35)
The main drilling rig Rig 18 arrived at theThe main drilling rig, Rig 18, arrived at the drill site for the JET project at Prees (UK) and is rigged up ready to go next week. The first scientists and PI Steve Hesselbo will be at the site by the end of the week.
- (inserted: 15.10.2020 09:46)
This week our first rig is undertaking the installationThis week our first rig is undertaking the installation of the conductor, which will support the upper portion of the borehole where the formation is unconsolidated so that we do not have any wash outs or cave in of material when we start drilling deeper. After these operations, we will be ready to mobilize the larger, main drilling rig!
- (inserted: 13.10.2020 12:44)
Yesterday, we received delivery of Rig 14 at the Prees drill site.Yesterday, we received delivery of Rig 14 at the Prees drill site. This rig will be used for the conductor installation operations, scheduled to begin on Monday (12 October)
- (inserted: 24.09.2020 11:29)
Construction of the drill pad at Prees finished yesterday, with the completion of the drilling...Construction of the drill pad at Prees finished yesterday, with the completion of the drilling cellar. We are now awaiting mobilisation of the first rig that will install the conductor casing.
- (inserted: 08.09.2020 14:58)
On site perimeter containment ditches have been dug andOn site, perimeter containment ditches have been dug and different linings are being installed to support operations at the drill site, including the main drilling rig. We are currently expecting that construction will be completed next week!
- (inserted: 08.09.2020 14:58)
Continuing site construction for the JET project at Prees (Cheshire Basin, UK) – we have broken...Continuing site construction for the JET project at Prees (Cheshire Basin, UK) – we have broken ground!
- (inserted: 31.08.2020 07:18)
Site construction for the Early Jurassic Earth System and Timescale (JET) project begins at Prees,...Site construction for the Early Jurassic Earth System and Timescale (JET) project begins at Prees, Cheshire Basin, UK. The principal aim for Prees is to core an expanded 850 m thick Late Triassic to Early Jurassic mudstone succession for integrated astrochronology, biostratgraphy, chemostratigraphy and magnetostratigraphy. The new record will complement ongoing studies of the historic Llanbedr (Mochras Farm) borehole, UK, and the project will lead to a greatly enhanced understanding of major environmental changes and Earth System transitions that took place over this time interval.
- (inserted: 02.09.2020 06:56)
Jet project team members at the new British Geological Survey core scanning laboratory, January...Jet project team members at the new British Geological Survey core scanning laboratory, January 28th 2020. Site investigation cores yielded several metres of Jurassic mudstone, which were used to develop a scanning protocol and define core work flows. Core scanning will be critical to the project success for core-log integration and to provide data for cyclostratigraphic analysis.
- (inserted: 02.09.2020 07:25)
Site investigation at Prees, December 2019.Site investigation at Prees, December 2019. Two cores were drilled that recovered core down to 37 m and established the unconformity between Quaternary diamict and Jurassic mudstone. The top of the Lower Jurassic is strongly fractured, likely as a result of glacial loading. Photo credit: SM Associates