Beyond EPICA Oldest Ice Field Diary

The Beyond EPICA project completed its second year of work, despite the cancellation of the last field season (2020-21), due to COVID19 restrictions.

A field camp at Little Dome C was established during the 2019-20 season and the materials and equipment have already been transported from Europe to Antarctica. Now the next field season 2021-22 (November 2021-to-January 2022) started.

A team of 12 people are aiming to finalize camp installation, set-up and preparation of the drilling area, along with drilling of the pilot hole, reaming of the hole and installation of the casing. The complete drill system is planned to be installed and tested towards the end of the season. The temporary storage cave at Little Dome C Camp is also planned to be completed during this field season.

For more information about the BEOI project, please visit the homepage.


19. January 2022

19 January 2022

Camp closure dinner at Little Dome C.

18. January 2022

18 January 2022

Ice needles of up to about 5 cm length next to the RADIX tent.

17. January 2022

17 January 2022

Matthias bidding farewell until the season 2022/2023.

16. January 2022

16 January 2022

Sleeping tent interior before closing for winterover.

15. January 2022

15 January 2022

Evening at LDC.

14. January 2022

14 January 2022

Last photo of the complete LDC team before the French colleagues relocate to Dome C.

13. January 2022

13 January 2022

Roof opening of the BEOIC drilling tent now closed for winterover.

12. January 2022

12 January 2022

View into the fascinating cryoscape at Little Dome C on a hazy day.

11. January 2022

11 January 2022

BEOIC drill in upright position sticking out of the drilling tent.

10. January 2022

10 January 2022

Aerial view of the LDC Camp.

9. January 2022

9 January 2022

Booster shot ready to be applied by Dr. Fabien at LDC.

8. January 2022

8 January 2022

Five flavours of pizzas: ready for the oven. The left most is La Speciale, with a good load of peperoncini and garlic.

7. January 2022

7 January 2022

Matthias focusing on a line of code that needs to be fixed.

6. January 2022

6 January 2022

Mid-day sun at Little Dome C illuminating the staircase to the purgatory (the BEOIC hole entrance).

5. January 2022

5 January 2022

View along the drill tower through the BEOIC drill tent with the open roof, the driller’s cabin and the fluid recycling cabin along the right side of the tent.

4. January 2022

4 January 2022

Romain working on the drip channel of the BEOIC drill.

3. January 2022

3 January 2022

BEOIC drilling tent with the drill tower in upright position (drilling position).

2. January 2022

2 January 2022

Collection of BEOIC drill heads made at AWI ready to be installed.

1. January 2022

1 January 2022

Little Dome C firn cores drilled by Philippe Possenti.

31. December 2021

31 December 2021

The remaining LDC personnel enjoying Saverio’s cuisine: Spaghetti marinara.

30. December 2021

30 December 2021

View from the roof of the BEOIC tent looking north (left) and south (right).

29. December 2021

29 December 2021

Matthias and Olivier on the scaffolding cutting through the tent canvas.

28. December 2021

28 December 2021

Sledge ready for transport to Dome C. The precious load includes 21 boxes of the BEIOC firn core pieces.

27. December 2021

27 December 2021

Jakob and Remo lowering the RADIX drill.

26. December 2021

26 December 2021

Olivier and Matthias with the BEOIC bore hole logger.

25. December 2021

25 December 2021

The LDC-BEOIC bore hole at 125 m depth, just below the casing.

24. December 2021

24 December 2021

The LDC-BEOIC Team after a sumptuous Christmas Dinner.

23. December 2021

23 December 2021

Setting the last BEOIC casing tube.

22. December 2021

22 December 2021

In the preparation of the casing operation at the BEOIC drilling trench.

21. December 2021

21 December 2021

Flag parade at the entrance of Little Dome C with Calogero, Carlo, Michele and Giacomo.

20. December 2021

20 December 2021

RADIX tent with some of the transport boxes for the less than 2 tons of equipment.

19. December 2021

19 December 2021

Concentrated work in the BEOIC drilling tent. Romain, Carlo and Philippe are cleaning the hole from reaming debris.

18. December 2021

18 December 2021

Tarmac at Dome C. Two Basler aircrafts (DC-3) bringing personnel and cargo. The Skidoo crew is ready to unload the cargo.

17. December 2021

17 December 2021

Matthias working on the electrical board.

16. December 2021

16 December 2021

David, our carpenter, prepares a pedestal.

15. December 2021

15 December 2021

The IGE reamer entering the BEOIC hole at the drilling trench floor at about 8 m depth.

14. December 2021

14 December 2021

Olivier Alemany with wide vision at Little Dome C.

13. December 2021

13 December 2021

Matthias working on the electrical installation in the drilling tent.

12. December 2021

12 December 2021

Giacomo in front of the satellite dish within the protective hull.

11. December 2021

11 December 2021

BEOIC drilling tent slowly filling up with two Vissmann cabins and the logging bench to the right.

10. December 2021

10 December 2021

Olivier and Anthony working hard that all activities have power.

9. December 2021

9 December 2021

Carlo and Mathias assembling the Vissmann elements.

8. December 2021

8 December 2021

Placement of the antenna for broadband communication.

7. December 2021

7 December 2021

The trench for the ice core containers is ready.

6. December 2021

6 December 2021

Entering Little Dome C precinct on the only road. The camp is visible in the background.

5. December 2021

5 December 2021

After a voyage of 1100 kilometers the traverse reaches the outskirts of Dome Concordia.

4. December 2021

4 December 2021

EIOC team holding the first firn core and marking the opening of the BEOIC drilling. FLTR: Pauty, Teste, Scalet, Panichi, Delanoe, Monaco, Possenti, Hüther.

14.-21. November 2021

21 November 2021

Flag outside weatherport.

7.-14. November 2021

14 November 2021

The ITASE modules (energy, living and storage) were opened and moved to the cargo line.