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- (inserted: 26.06.2012 00:00)
This week the Core Lab Science crew achieved a new ...This week the Core Lab Science crew achieved a new and long sought milestone: they have completed whole-round scanning of intact core from all three drill holes. Just in time to ship the DMT scanner back to the GFZ (Germany) before the temporary import papers expire.
- (inserted: 18.04.2012 00:00)
Project Hotspot held its first dedicated science workshop. This workshop ...Project Hotspot held its first dedicated science workshop. This workshop brought together 26 co-investigators from other institutions -- including 14 other un...iversities and 5 agencies or research foundations (DOSECC, INL, USGS, LacCore, ICDP) -- representing four different countries (US, Canada, Germany, UK), with science team members at Utah State University. The workshop had two primary goals: first, to present preliminary science results from team members who have already begun work (e.g., geophysical surveys, borehole logging, thermal logging, and preliminary core chemistry); and second, to allow team members to present their future research plans, and coordinate research groups on special themes. The workshop was a great success, with 28 oral presentations and 8 poster presentations, long discussions, and a wrap-up that laid out plans for continued work. Among the highlights were the detailed geophysical site surveys, and preliminary whole rock geochemistry for the basalt core (based on bore hole gamma logs, hand-held XRF, and whole rock XRF of selected samples) -- which show several horizons of "Craters of the Moon"-type evolved lavas (high Fe, K). Jonathan Glen of the USGS also presented his new high-resolution gravity and magnetic surveys of the western and central SRP, which shows subsurface structure in unprecedented detail. Participants had two opportunities to view the core from all three drill holes (at both the USU Core Processing Facility and our off-site core storage) so they could begin planning their core sampling strategies. All participants received a flash drive with high-resolution photos of all the core from each drill site.
- (inserted: 03.02.2012 00:00)
Mission Accomplished!!! Mountain Home well complete!! This past Tuesday we ...Mission Accomplished!!! Mountain Home well complete!! This past Tuesday we completed drilling of the Mountain Home core hole at Total Depth of 1821.5 meters (5976 feet). Yesterday we set temporary casing string to TD for long-term temperature monitoring. We will return to complete logging of the hole, and to do the plug-and-abandon, sometime this coming summer. Geothermally, this hole was a great success, with a major fracture system flowing hot water to the surface -- an artesian well. Last bottom hole temperature (projected to equilibrium) was 160ºC. We are now faced with completing the lithologic description of over 3 miles of core from our three* drill holes. We are about half done with this effort, and it will take many months to complete the rest. [*actually four, since we did two separate holes at Mountain Home]. Project overall, we drilled 6291 meters total depth, and collected 5430 meters of core, including basalt, rhyolite and sediment. This is enough to keep a lot of people busy for a very long time. Congrats to everyone involved.
- (inserted: 23.01.2012 00:00)
We have begun geophysical logging of the Mtn Home drill ...We have begun geophysical logging of the Mtn Home drill hole. The Operational Support Group of ICDP has arrived along with Doug Schmitt from University of Alberta. Doug's vibraseis truck and mobile lab show up later this week. It's too risky to pull the HQ rods now, so we will have to wait to log the upper part of the hole until we are ready to abandon the hole. Right now just logging lower 701.04 meters.
- (inserted: 28.12.2011 00:00)
Project Hotspot Status: On 8 December 2011 we suspended drilling ...Project Hotspot Status: On 8 December 2011 we suspended drilling operations for the remainder of the year, after pulling back the NQ drill rods into the temporary casing (HQ rods). Current depth is 5496 feet below surface (1675 meters) at 122ºC. The USAF has made a supplemental funding request to continue drilling past 1828.8 meters. If successful we begin drilling again in early January; if not, we will log the lower part of the hole with open hole tools, then insert 2-3/8" liner to run the temperature through. We plan to let hole equilibrate for 4-5 months before we pull all casing and drill rods, and plug the hole. Stand by for more updates after the holidays.
- (inserted: 29.11.2011 00:00)
The drillers and science crew enjoy Thanksgiving dinner in the ...The drillers and science crew enjoy Thanksgiving dinner in the core logging tent, courtesy Site Manager Alan Delahunty. Thanks Alan! Drillers make 39.6 meters of core on T-day. Bottom hole temperature are 111ºC at 1535 meters (or 232ºF at 5036 feet). Some like it Hot!!!
- (inserted: 22.11.2011 00:00)
We restarted drilling operations on Monday, November 14. This is ...We restarted drilling operations on Monday, November 14. This is last Big Push. Depth about 1188.7 meters, bottom hole temperature about 93C. November 20 -- were at 1364.6 meters below surface. There has been a lot of highly altered basalt that have a greenish tint to them. A lot of brecciated basalt, subaqueous hyaloclastites with sediment mixed in. Sometimes it appears to be a basalt but is very rich in a green clay. Drilling is going smoothly. They had to install a blow-out preventer (BOP) which is mandatory when they get higher temps. Last bottom hole temp 96.8ºC.
- (inserted: 26.10.2011 00:00)
After hitting basalt at about 731.5 meters, we went back ...After hitting basalt at about 731.5 meters, we went back into clay-rich sediments at 762 meters! Slow going after that until finally on 16 October, we hit basalt again. Still in basalt now. The photo shows dark clastic sediments on top of the lower basalt, with gastropod fossils.
- (inserted: 09.10.2011 00:00)
Drilling is progressing, it looks like we are alternating between ...Drilling is progressing, it looks like we are alternating between seds and basalt. We are looking forward to hearing more from the drilling site. We will continue to keep updates comeing. :)
- (inserted: 07.10.2011 00:00)
Drilling is progressing. It looks like we have finally made ...Drilling is progressing. It looks like we have finally made it back into some basalt and out of the lake seds. I guess our message for today is keep your fingers crossed. :)
- (inserted: 16.08.2011 00:00)
Run for the hills and abandon ship! Looks like we ...Run for the hills and abandon ship! Looks like we had a lightning strike fire start up a fire last night. Winds were changing towards the drill site. However, the fire died out before reaching the site. Everything is ok and nothing was burnt, however, still stuck!
- (inserted: 15.08.2011 00:00)
On August 4th, the Boy Scouts visited with a full ...On August 4th, the Boy Scouts visited with a full guided tour of the core recovery and core handling process. Sasha, Joseph, and Alan divide them into groups for an up close look core recovery as the drillers bring up a run, and at core processing once its on deck. They also hear about geothermal energy and why its important. On August 7th, The PQ drill string twisted off at 140 meters below surface (inside the casing), leaving the drill bit stuck on the bottom with the weight of 305 meters of drill rod on top of it. The weight prevented the overshot tool from freeing the inner core barrel of the alien tool. To make matters worse, the overshot release tool becomes stuck on the broken edge at 140 meters. A CCTV video crew is called in to view the situation downhole and the overshot release is finally freed from edge. After many calls and much consultation, the overshot is welded to the end of an HQ drill rod, which is sent down to grab the inner core barrel and free it from the stuck bit. Success!! This past weekend, the core barrel got stuck once again.. Collapsed hole? Infiltration of sands? We are working to remedy this situation! We are still in lake sediments, although in the last recovered core barrel, the seds were coarsening.. Expect to be in basalt pretty soon!
- (inserted: 04.08.2011 00:00)
Drilling through sediments continues at Mountain Home. Slow going: the ...Drilling through sediments continues at Mountain Home. Slow going: the intercalation of sand, clay, and gravel makes it difficult to penetrate with core bit, but recovery is still fairly good at around 80%. The gravel beds especially make trouble for the bit and the core catcher. Depth 445.9 meters as of 08-03-11.
- (inserted: 25.07.2011 00:00)
This past week has been slow going through intercalated gravels, ...This past week has been slow going through intercalated gravels, sands, and clays -- very sticky clays! Tried a range of drilling tools but finally ended up with a modified "alien bit". Now drilling through lake sediments. Progress is slow but steady. The alternation of sands and clay is challenging, but the drillers are learning how to move ahead and get good recovery as well. Currently at 283 meters below surface.
- (inserted: 14.07.2011 00:00)
Mountain Home Drill Hole is underway! Mobilization was completed on ...Mountain Home Drill Hole is underway! Mobilization was completed on Saturday 9 July with rig up, and coring began early Sunday morning. First out of hole was massive variolitic basalt unlike anything seen on surface. Drilling continued to 201.2 meters with same basalt. Coring is being carried out with PQ size drill string (3.35 inch core - almost twice as heavy as HQ core). Because of its size and weight, core runs are only 1.5 meters long. Coring through upper basalt layer, into first sniff of sediments underneath. The Lake Science crew waits to punch through into lake sediments; logging basalt as we go. Site Chief Scientist Alexander Prokopenko (South Carolina) and Co-Chief Kristina Brady of LacCore presiding.
- (inserted: 28.06.2011 00:00)
Last Week was busy!! Borehole geophysical logging continued at Kimberly, ...Last Week was busy!! Borehole geophysical logging continued at Kimberly, and was completed around midnight on Friday. Other activities included temperature logging at Kimama (to 1408 meters) and surface seismic surveys at Kimama - completed on Friday as well. Once we clear blockage at 1408 meters, we will temperature log the lower part of the Kimama bore hole.
- (inserted: 16.06.2011 00:00)
Partners from Boise State University and University of Alberta seismic ...Partners from Boise State University and University of Alberta seismic teams have begun to deploy geophones on a 2 km east-west transect of the drill site. The combined Boise-Alberta system is a 360 channel geophone array with a 6000 pound force Vibroseis source. The raw shoot gathers look great and we will begin initial processing tomorrow to see how they shape up. A 3 km north-south transect was shot this past Tuesday and Wednesday. As of Wednesday 15 June, we are at TD of ~ 2000 m. The rods are stuck on the bottom, but we will deal with that later. The borehole geophysics company Colog is here to obtain nuclear source neutron logs through the drill rods, along with a gamma log for reference. After they finish, the ICDP Operation Support Group (OSG) will take over to carry out the open hole logging. These logs are critical to establishing stratigraphy, calibrating formation boundary depths, and determining the physical properties of the country rock. Logging will continue for another 10 days.
- (inserted: 08.06.2011 00:00)
The Science Crew has core logging-processing down to a fine ...The Science Crew has core logging-processing down to a fine art. Core has been recovered from 1828 meters below surface (over 610 meters below seal level!). This was our target depth for Kimberly; we will continue to drill for another week and see how much deeper we can get. Our next location is Mountain Home, Idaho to complete our tri-leg drilling operations.. This hole will hopefully be completed in late summer.
- (inserted: 31.05.2011 00:00)
The coring continues - and we are back after hiatus ...The coring continues - and we are back after hiatus in posts - due to GSA Rocky Mountain-Cordilleran, held in Logan, Utah, 17-20 May, and the US Continental Scientific Drilling Workshop, held at NSF in Arlington VA 23-24 May. Going great at site (30-50 meters per day) up until 21 May, when we started to have problems with slipped core, broken altered rock, and the tophead drive. Finally back on track with 38.4 meters on 30 May. Getting close to Total Depth.
- (inserted: 06.05.2011 00:00)
Duane and Ben from USGS are here making 1-inch diameter ...Duane and Ben from USGS are here making 1-inch diameter cores for paleomagnetic studies (p-mag). The p-mag cores are taken from the whole core using a drill press with diamond coring bit. After coring almost through, the p-mag core (still attached) is oriented and marked before it is finally broken free. Before orienting, each core is dried with air and heat lamps. These p-mag cores will not only tell us whether the flows are normal or reverse polarization (magnetic time scale), but will give an indication of how long between flows, using "paleo-secular variation" -- i.e., the drift of magnetic North over time scales of decades to centuries.
- (inserted: 04.05.2011 00:00)
While the rig is down for repair again, Twin Falls ...While the rig is down for repair again, Twin Falls High School Honors Earth Science Class of Jo Dodd visits Project Hotspot. After a brief introduction and orientation talk from Chief Scientist Lisa Morgan, the students get a lesson in wire line core drilling from DOSECC Operations Manager Beau Marshall. Then into the Core Logging Tent to view core from 914.4 meters below the surface, and learn how we log and study core to understand the deep earth. A good time was had by all.. Additionally, Eric Christiansen and Richard from BYU spend a few days at the USU Core Lab acquiring initial analyses of the Kimama drill core using a portable XRF unit. They constructed a core stand to hold core over the instrument during analysis, set so that the business end of the X-ray tube is almost but not quite touching the sample. The data so far look very good and indicate that we have Craters of the Moon type flows at depth in the drill hole.. We hope to start coring again by the end of this week.. More to come!
- (inserted: 21.04.2011 00:00)
Drilling down on 19 April. More photos of the twisted ...Drilling down on 19 April. More photos of the twisted off outer core barrel and the fragments of melted drill bit we had to retrieve before drilling ahead. Plus Lisa, Sally, and Tyson logging some beautiful rhyolite that underlies the not-so-beautiful mud layer.Drilling down below 3200 feet. Nice rhyolite with sediment interbeds, and two inch thick ash layer.
- (inserted: 18.04.2011 00:00)
We are on site and coring has begun. The rig ...We are on site and coring has begun. The rig went up last Wednesday 13th and began washing/reaming into hole on 14th May. Had to go slowly to avoid starting a new hole. Back on bottom Friday afternoon bringing up core of beautiful crystal-rich welded ash flows. Problems on Saturday - core barrel would not release. After bringing up a dozen or so sticks of rod found the problem: a drill rod had split, making it impossible to maintain mud pressure on bit. Finally got the core barrel to release and found it "welded" shut. Tripping out found the outer core barrel had twisted off as well. Retrieved what we could; now milling out the bit, which is fused to the bottom of hole. Hope to be making core again by Monday.
- (inserted: 07.04.2011 00:00)
More photos from the SAG field trip on 27 March. ...More photos from the SAG field trip on 27 March. The drill rig is waiting on parts from Canada; hope to be back up next week.
- (inserted: 01.04.2011 00:00)
ICDP - Science Advisory Group Field Trip to Idaho to ...ICDP - Science Advisory Group Field Trip to Idaho to survey Project Hotspot. The SAG team visits Clearlake Grade (a beautiful enormous road cut through SRP basalts), the Snake River Canyon below Perrine Bridge (the most spectacular exposure of SRP Stratigraphy in southern Idaho), and the Kimberly drill site. Rig is still down for repairs, but that doesn’t slow us down. Thanks to Steve Hickman for the photos. Progress continues in the USU core lab.
- (inserted: 19.03.2011 00:00)
Rig repair continues. For Now. Chris replaced parts on CS4002, ...Rig repair continues. For Now. Chris replaced parts on CS4002, then ran in couple thousand feet of drill rod to test system with a load on it. The hydraulic problem persisted, so the hydraulic ram will need to be removed and rebuilt. Estimated down time - one week. But we have plenty of logging to do in the core lab. The Core Lab science crew plugs away at 2042.2 meters of core from Kimama drill hole. This includes high-res photos of each core box (15 megapixel, stored in RAW format for maximum detail), whole round core scanning on the DMT scanner, and lithologic logging into the ICDP Drilling Information System software. In a few weeks we will begin splitting core for archival and working splits, and sampling for whole rock, mineral chemistry, and paleomag. About a dozen people work in the lab, although usually only 5-6 are there at one time.
- (inserted: 14.03.2011 00:00)
The last week was amazing: 100-140 feet per day of ...The last week was amazing: 100-140 feet per day of beautiful rhyolite core in all varieties, from altered rhyolite through glassy and crystalline welded tuffs. It cuts like soft butter. But alas, it was not to last: late Friday night hydraulic problems on the CS4002 forced a complete shutdown till a technician can come and troubleshoot the system on Monday. We are using the downtime to get caught up on logging and data base entries. Current depth 3091 feet (942 m). We have welcomed Lisa Morgan onto the science team.. She is well versed in rhyolites from Yellowstone, so her input is very welcomed.
- (inserted: 02.03.2011 00:00)
Tues March 01, 2011 at 19:46.Tues March 01, 2011 at 19:46. We are at a depth of 617.9 meters. Core has varied from nasty mudstone and clays that have bound up the bit. We have cored quite a bit of what we called ash that has been altered. Our last run had a section of rhyolite that ranged in colors from red to to green. The wire line on the rig is messed up and made a big rat's nest.
- (inserted: 24.02.2011 00:00)
For the past 2 weeks we have been drilling back ...For the past 2 weeks we have been drilling back and forth from basalt to rhyolite to seds .. Basalt was encountered @ 243.8 mbs .. February 11 - we hit a sand layer that was apparently overpressured or artesian as it pushed up into the drill rod when they pull up. Chris Delahunty says its similar to when DOSECC drilled sand off the New Jersey shore. Very slow progress. Finally got through it and was back into basalt .. February 16 - After 2 days of re-cementing the hole, we started making progress again at around 701.1 mbs .. Progress has been relatively slow compared to the same depth range at Kimama, but the core looks altered like it did at depth (1219.2-1524 mbs) at Kimama. These basalts underlie an outflow sheet of welded ash .. Flow tuff from the Twin Falls eruptive complex, so they must be at least 7 Ma in age .. February 18 - encountered a thick section of sediment below basalt. Lots of mudstone and some sands - interesting stuff .. February 20 - still slow going in a thick 30.5 m plus sediment layer that plugs up the core barrel. Spent the time reviewing previous core and found these spar calcite filled cavities around 315.5 m depth. Highly altered and mineralized basalt -- looks like basalt at 1524 m in Kimama drillhole .. February 22 - Back into Rhyolite!!! Breccia upper surface of welded ash flow tuff, strongly altered in places along fractures. With the onset of more competent rocks, drilling progress has increased significantly. Currently at 457.2 m depth.
- (inserted: 10.02.2011 00:00)
Drilling has commenced at the Kimberly site. We are allDrilling has commenced at the Kimberly site. We are all happy that we are drilling in rhyolite.
- (inserted: 07.02.2011 00:00)
We has started coring at the Kimberly Site (42.55 N, ...We has started coring at the Kimberly Site (42.55 N, -114.34 W). Over the weekend, while the drill site was coming together and waiting for the cement to cure, we took a short field trip to the Cassia Mountains to see rhyolite ash flows in outcrop. The Science crew get a preview of what to expect in Kimberly core. Sure enough, the first core out of Kimberly was a devitrified rhyolite ash flow tuff. This piece was collected 214.27 meters below the surface
- (inserted: 26.01.2011 00:00)
End of the line at Kimama. Doug Schmitt and his ...End of the line at Kimama. Doug Schmitt and his crew from University of Alberta oversee wireline geophysical logging by Centrury Geophysics after we reach bottom hole depth of 1854.5 m. Logging begins with nuclear tools through the casing, then moves on to open hole logging. Sediment bridges create problems in the open hole, but portions are logged successfully. Site preparation for the Kimberly hole has begun at the University of Idaho Research and Extension Center. The snow has melted, leaving a thick layer of mud. Still gooey after a week of drying out.
- (inserted: 18.01.2011 00:00)
We are now almost 1800 meters below the surface. Highly ...We are now almost 1800 meters below the surface. Highly altered volcanic rock - might be basalt, hard to tell. I have seen Jurassic submarine basalts that look better than this. The drillers are pressing ahead to make as much core as possible before the geophysical loggers show up Thursday morning (20 Jan). Warm weather and a strong wind have melted almost all the snow at drill site, leaving mud wallows where ever there is no gravel pad. But it beats freezing. [J Shervais]
- (inserted: 15.01.2011 00:00)
Quality, not quantity, summed up drilling operations today. Despite short ...Quality, not quantity, summed up drilling operations today. Despite short runs, it appears that we may be getting out of the nasty clay/mudstone (knock on wood) and into more interesting material. The last runs, pulled this afternoon and this morning, are of well-cemented, grain-to-clast supported pebble conglomerate. Bedding appears to be present in the uppermost foot of the run, at about 5748.5', but with increased depth, clasts become more densely spaced and bedding is not apparent. Clasts are predominantly sub-angular and are mainly (85%) lithic fragments of white to pinkish felsic-looking material. There also appears to be some fine-grained red lithic fragments as well (chert?), but these make up <5% of the rock.
- (inserted: 11.01.2011 00:00)
Encountered thick, unstable sediments at 5590 feet below surface, which ...Encountered thick, unstable sediments at 5590 feet below surface, which vary from relatively coherent sands and epiclastic ash layers, to swelling clays. Very slow going. Sediment persists to 5700 feet at least. Pushing ahead.
- (inserted: 10.01.2011 00:00)
And we're back .. Happy New Year!!! And the drilling ...And we're back .. Happy New Year!!! And the drilling resumes. Nightly temperatures of -23 C have slowed down our startup. Warmed up to almost freezing later in week. We had some trouble getting back to bottom of hole - unstable sediment blockages - but are now on the bottom and coring ahead. Total depth as of midnight 6 Jan = 1633 meters below surface. We are continuing to drill in hope of encountering rhyolite, and will be evaluating our progress and costs every few days.
- (inserted: 21.12.2010 00:00)
Just above 1413.3 mbs we cored a sedimentary section. The ...Just above 1413.3 mbs we cored a sedimentary section. The sedimentary section consists of intervals that are nearly pure mud with pebbly horizons 10-20 cm thick. After this interval we crossed back into fine-grained basalt, with some regions of mineralization. At 1508.7 m we hit rhyolite .. Or do we? By 1539.2 m we were back into basalt. Coring showed that a thin layer of sediment with rhyolite (?) clasts sits on flow-banded rhyolite (?). We are disappointed to find that the rhyolite lava is underlain by more basalt. We will continue drilling ahead to find the bottom of the basalt. THE ROAD TO HELL IS PAVED WITH BASALT!! We are now a mile below the surface and still in basalt. When will it end? Stay tuned. We are securing site today for Christmas break, and will resume drilling in January, after we spend some time examining core.
- (inserted: 15.12.2010 00:00)
The lab is progressing well. The photo stand camera is ...The lab is progressing well. The photo stand camera is calibrated and running smoothly. The core scanner is almost at its ideal operating conditions and should be running most of day soon. At the drill site the science team are still logging basalt and are at 1492 meters (4895 ft) deep as of 13:45 hours. The basalt still has a white mineral vesicle fill. We hope to reach rhyolite soon, cross your fingers.
- (inserted: 09.12.2010 00:00)
Still in dense, partially altered basalt, typically with blue-green clay ...Still in dense, partially altered basalt, typically with blue-green clay in vesicles and fractures. Starting to get more variety in secondary minerals -- including zeolites (photo of puffy, fibrous white mineral) and quartz (greyish fill in center of some vugs). Many vugs (vesicles?) have a thin rim of calcite (white) with quartz fill. The occurrence of zeolite and quartz suggests elevated temperatures, higher than those experienced higher in hole. BHT on Wednesday 8 Dec was 41.65 C at 1394 m --- not an equilibrium temperature, T was still going up when drilling started. Depth as of wednesday night was 1403 meters.
- (inserted: 02.12.2010 00:00)
Another snowy day at Kimama, though thanks to the cloud ...Another snowy day at Kimama, though thanks to the cloud cover, not as frigid. The transition to NQ rod occurred on November 31. This process went smoothly and everyone is pleased with the lighter core boxes. Drillers are pulling out core runs every 3-4 hours, equating to about 12.2 m per shift. Our depth as of 12/1/10 reached 1200.9 m. If current conditions hold, we should reach 1250 m by sometime this afternoon. Core is massive to vesicular basalt displaying relatively fresh groundmass and plagioclase phenocrysts. Secondary alteration is displayed in the form of calcite and celadonite vesicle and fracture mineralization. Interstitial glass within the core does not appear to display the same pervasive celadonite replacement as in previous runs.Thin sediment interbeds and glassy and vesicular morphology in some core signifies numerous flow breaks, indicating a departure from the massive >10 m flow units lately encountered in core runs. Nearly all fractures show secondary mineralization in the form of celadonite and/or calcite.
- (inserted: 23.11.2010 00:00)
Snow time in Kimama - winter is very much here. ...Snow time in Kimama - winter is very much here. Drill hole is now over 1188.7 m deep. We will soon stand down for Thanksgiving break, and get back to it next weekend. Core facility is taking shape .. We will soon start lithologic logging, core scanning, paleomag sampling.
- (inserted: 18.11.2010 00:00)
Wireline drum broke on Tuesday so not much drilling completed ...Wireline drum broke on Tuesday so not much drilling completed -- drum repaired but new drum is being shipped up from SLC. Core continues to be very dense from low temperature alteration. Vesicles and pockets are filled with celadonite (blue-green clay/mica), which also heals fractures and apparently replaces former interstitial glass, giving core a bluish tinge. As a result core retrieved in long chunks -- see photo for 2.4 m piece that came up with temperature probe. We are now at 1127.8 m. BHT at 1120.4 m is 34.2 C -- putting us on a gradient of ~155C/km below the aquifer. At this gradient we should hit 100C around our planned depth of 1.5 km. Weather conditions -- cold and cloudy, but not as windy as Monday-Tuesday, when they had to stake tent down with extra guy lines. More weather on its way.
- (inserted: 15.11.2010 00:00)
Drilling went well this past weekend. As of 1800 (11.14.10), ...Drilling went well this past weekend. As of 1800 (11.14.10), the DOSECC drilling crew has cored to a TD of 1035 m, with a progress of 28.9 m in the past day. Some short core runs on Nov. 13 were overcome by some changes in drilling procedures. The core continues to provide a range of hydrothermally altered minerals and textures. The rock exhibites interspersed sequences of 30 cm to 1 m thick zones of aphanitic dense basalt with vesicle-rich zones that are infilled with white calcite rims, clay fillings, or blue-green opaline filling. Mineralized fractures in places are creamy white to lith tan and connect the mineralized vesicles, and nearly all fractures are mineralized. In places we observe subhorizontal fractures or voids that are mineralized with fine-grained botryoidal fill. Some of the vugs are filled with a fine-grained cubic black mineral? The temperature measured @ midday was 23.9 C at the depth of 1059.1 m. We are fairly confident that we have left the upper aquifer and entered into a deeper thermal zone.
- (inserted: 12.11.2010 00:00)
As of 7:30 pm (11/11/10), the depth of the corehole ...As of 7:30 pm (11/11/10), the depth of the corehole was about 1018 meters. Recovered core is of the standard mix of massive to shelly-pahoehoe basalt with copious calcite crystallization in vesicles and on fracture surfaces. Secondary mineralization and alteration are becoming more common with increased depth. The mysterious vesicle goo has made its appearance in various shades of green, yellow, and grey, and in various consistencies ranging from gooey to moderately dry and friable. Drilling has slowed as a result of an increasingly worn bit, so a bit trip is in the cards for the very near future (tomorrow?). We've been getting a core run about every hour. Recovery is still at 100% and the loggers and drillers are getting along fine. Chris Delahunty has installed a datalogger that collects drilling information such as water pressures, bit torque, lift pressures, and more things that I don't know much about. It is very impressive and will allow for even more understanding of the subsurface as we go.
- (inserted: 28.10.2010 00:00)
This Saturday (23 October) we successfully set casing to 274.3 ...This Saturday (23 October) we successfully set casing to 274.3 meters, advancing HWT size casing with a casing shoe bit so that we would not have to pull the casing to remove the bit. Casing was landed in the center of a massive basalt flow (as determined by wireline logs and core photos). After cementing in place, we had to let cement cure for 24 hours before advancing again. On Sunday afternoon 24 October, the drillers cleared cement from casing and drilled through the cement plugs and down into basalt, officially beginning Stage 3 of operations - coring down below the casing string. We are continuing to core with HQ size rod. On Tuesday 26 October, we passed 274.3 m depth, thus advancing core to depths we have not sampled before. From here on down we are in new terrain. As of Wednesday night at midnight, we have advanced core to 431.9 m below surface. Have we finally passed through the aquifer? Are we finished with boring alteration mineral assemblages? Core from a depth of about 358.1 to 365.7 m, contains abundant zeolites and/or altered clay. These are most commonly green to yellowish brown, with the green zeolites/clay? often exhibiting a tabular form and the yellowish zeolites/clay? Appearing more massive. Core pulled below 365.7 m appears to be relatively unaltered and flow units still contain the usual calcite amygdules.
- (inserted: 25.10.2010 00:00)
Taking advantage of coring break while casing is set, the ...Taking advantage of coring break while casing is set, the Site Science Team visits basalt and rhyolite outcrops around Twin Falls to see what lava flows look like in two dimensions. Ten members of the team, including co-PI's John Shervais and Jim Evans, visited some classic exposures to view and discuss the intricacies of lava flows. DOSECC set casing on Saturday 23 October; as soon as the cement cures we will be coring again.
- (inserted: 20.10.2010 00:00)
Stage 2 drilling is progressing: the drillers have opened the ...Stage 2 drilling is progressing: the drillers have opened the hole down to 198.12 m, and will mill through edge of old drill rod to continue down. Waiting for milling bit, then should move down to casing depth in 2-3 days. Once casing is set we continue coring below 304.8 m. Focus of core activity has been moved to Logan Utah State University Core Facility, where team members are logging core from the new Kimama 1B hole, and entering data into the ICDP Drilling Information System from Kimama 1A. Hope to be making new core by next weekend, when we move backup to drill site.
- (inserted: 14.10.2010 00:00)
Stage 1 Complete, Stage 2 in progress. We have finished ...Stage 1 Complete, Stage 2 in progress. We have finished stage 1 of drilling, having gotten through the unstable part of the aquifer, and are now into stage 2 -- opening the hole to set casing. Casing will be set at around 980 feet below surface in massive basalts. We ended up kicking off into a new hole at 660 feet (Ki...mama 1B), which was cored with HQ to 996 feet. This new hole will be the one we continue drilling in after casing is set. The process of opening and casing hole will take a week to 10 days or so, depending on conditions. After the casing sets, we will begin coring with HQ again. Update: The sed layer at 182-201 m kept washing out, and the drillers ended up making a new hole at 201 m, so they went ahead cored that down to 300 m, by-passing the stuck drill rods. so we now have another 100 m of HQ core on deck. They completed prepping the hole yesterday and are now about 25 feet down or so with a rotary bit, opening to 16.5 cm. Best estimate for completing hole and casing, and starting to make core again is 23 October.
- (inserted: 11.10.2010 00:00)
We have had a frustrating day of reaming and conditioning ...We have had a frustrating day of reaming and conditioning the hole. We can get the sand zones at the 600-628 fbs area to stabilize and then the subsequent trip out and in with the rod cutter or the fishing tool hits a sand brigge over the rod. This requires a trip in and ream and condition. We believe the remaining rod in the hole has slipped as we can no longer make contact at the 660 fbs. We have been latched onto the rod once and subsequently slipped off. As we have been reaming the hole it has become appearant that the NQ rods have started a new hole and we are looking into the options of stepping around the stuck pipe. We are currently at 660 fbs with the HQ rods washing in slowly trying to stabilize the hole. This may require a cement job in order to fill the cavity that the falling sand is making. So far no more steel out of the hole. We are working to make it a stabke environment so that we can set the 4.5" casing to the 970 fbs mark.