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Introduction to the International Continental Scientific Drilling Program Uli Harms, ICDP, GFZ Potsdam, Germany ICDP is an international funding program providing:. Financial and logistical drilling support for inter-national Earthscience teams with a need for drilling.

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Introduction to the

International Continental Scientific Drilling Program

Uli Harms, ICDP, GFZ Potsdam, Germany

ICDP is an international funding program providing:

Financial and logistical drilling support for inter-national Earthscience teams with a need for drilling


Positive International Review

20 projects, 40 workshops, ~ 1000 scientists involved


ICDP Membership

Member Countries

  • Germany
  • USA
  • Japan
  • China
  • Canada
  • Austria
  • Norway
  • Mexico
  • Poland
  • Czech Republic
  • Iceland
  • Finland
  • South Africa
  • Member Organizations
  • Schlumberger
  • Negotiations
  • Russia
  • Italy
  • Spain
  • New Zealand
  • Sweden
  • Interests
  • Korea
  • Chile
  • Israel
  • Netherlands
  • Great Britain
  • France
  • Argentina
  • Ireland
criteria for selection of icdp projects
Global Criterion Problem of Global Significance

“World-Class” Geological Site

International Criterion Broad International Collaboration

Best Possible Science Team

Pooling of Resources and Technology

Societal-Needs Criterion Relevance of Problem to Society

Collaboration with Industry

Need-for-Drilling Criterion Proof of Necessity for Drilling

Depth-to-Cost Criterion Balancing of Costs and Drilling Design

Criteria for Selection of ICDP Projects
funding strategy
Funding Strategy

ICDP funds are granted for project development and drilling-related expenses, but not for science support

  • Foster International Co-operation and Project development through Workshops (seed money to lift projects)
  • Form partnerships with other scientific, private, governmental or industry groups for project funding
  • Direct money to drilling operations, scientific-technical on-site support, facilities and data management
  • Fund science proposals on sites of global significance

ICDP Workshops Goals

  • Formulate focussed ScientificObjectives
  • Define specific Operational Targets
  • Form an active and convincing Scientific Team and Project Structure
  • Draft Plans incl. Funding-, Budget-, Operations-, Management- Plan
  • Write and Submit a Full Drilling Proposal to ICDP and other agencies

ICDP Workshops

Fault Zone Drilling, Japan Mar ´06

Lake Van, Turkey, Apr. ´06


Chicxulub, Germany, Sep. ´06

Mutnovsky Volc., Russia, Sep. ´06

Campi Flegrei, Italy, Nov. ´06

COREF Coral Reef, Japan, Jan. ´07

Anatolian Fault, Turkey, Apr. ´07

Nankai on-land Drill, Japan, Aug ´07

Mjölnir Crater, Norway, Sep. ´07


Prerequisites for Success

  • A bright scientific idea to study processes or/and test important hypothesis that are only accessible through drilling
  • Drilling at Sites of Global Scientific Importance and Societal Relevance as Examples for Comparable Settings
  • Excellent geophysical and geological Site Surveys to justify drilling target, drilling depth, and to reduce drilling risks
  • Technical Feasibility and Budget Realities
  • Environmental and Societal Compliance. Acceptance and Support through National Authorities early in the Project Planning Phase required.
  • High Degree of International Cooperation in Best Possible Science Teams with Educational Potential

Organizational Prerequisites

  • Successfull application to ICDP plus other agencies to collect Commingled Funding / Cooperation with Industry
  • Scientific Leadership coupled with Team Capabilities of Lead PIs
  • Home Institutes and NationalSupport andAcknowledgement
  • Formation of a Workable Scientific Team
  • Communication and Planning Skills in PI Group and in the Scientific Team - Constant information, reminders, commendations
  • Experience with Drilling Projects and Large / International Projects
  • Engineering Support and good Relation to Drilling Contractors
  • Sufficient Contingency Funding / Risk Margin
operational support
Operational Support

Through ICDP Operational Support Group

  • Main OSG Personell Functions:
  • Provide technical and managerial assistance to PI´s
  • Support for scientific and engineering drill site operations
  • Support for field facility for sample description, scanning and handling
  • Provide a readily accessible ICDP data management system
  • Training and Courses for all of the above
operational support cont
Operational Support (cont.)

Main OSG Equipment and IT Support:

  • Drilling equipment and engineering.
  • Downhole logging tools, instruments, cables, winches.
  • Drill site science and tools, mobile field lab, core logging, core scanning, on-line fluid analysis (mud gas logging).
  • Information and data management system, Drilling Information System, WWW
icdp equipment pool organized by operational support group at gfz
ICDP Equipment Poolorganized byOperationalSupportGroupat GFZ

Mud Gas Logging


5.5 km Wireline Drillstring

Slimhole Sondes

& Downhole Logging

Core Scanning

& Logging


Hawaii Scientific Drilling Project

Study of plume-related chemical, physical and volcanological processes

Propsl Dossec 1987

Pilot Well 1993

Propsl ICDP 1996

1999, Mar-Sep: 3100 m

2004/2005: Plan 4500 m


Hawaii Scientific Drilling Project

Cores recovered: Highly fragmented pillow lavas, breccias, and rubble

II. Drilling Phase

December 15, 2004: Coring Start

Starting depth: 3007 m

Final depth: 3340 m

III. Drilling Phase

December 12, 2006: Coring Start

Final depth: 3520 m


Science Workshop 1997

Technical Workshop 2000

Drilling 2003/4

Unzen Volcano Drilling Project, Japan


Unzen Volcano Drilling Project, Japan

magma conduit 600°C

Brecciated Zone

Conduit Zone

Deviated Drill Hole

Eruption mechanism

Conduit Formation



Structure & Evolution

Drilling Technology

Hydrothermal Alteration


Lake Bosumtwi Drilling

  • Excellent site to study impact cratering and paleoclimate
  • 10.5 km diameter, 80 m deep lake in Ghana
  • 1.07 Ma impact, 360 m lacustrine sediments with central uplift
  • Workshop in September 2001
  • ICDP approval in 2002
  • Permitting and planning since 2003
  • Drilling from July to October 2004

Lake Bosumtwi Drilling Project

Digital elevation model of Bosumtwi, using published topography and new seismic data (Scholz et al., 2002)


Sediment Coring

  • Jul 8 – Aug 30
  • 6 sites
  • Up to 300 m
  • Total core recovery 1800 m
  • Impact Rock Coring
  • Sep 7 – Oct 10
  • 2 sites
  • 451 and 545 m
  • Total core recovery300 m

ICDP Drilling Barge GLAD 800


Iceland Deep Drilling Project

  • In Situ Probing of 400 - 600°C Super-critical Fluids at 4-5 km
  • 2 ICDP Workshops 02
  • Technical Feasibility Report
  • Pilot Coring 2004
  • Drilling 2007 ?
  • Consortium of Private
  • Public-Partnership
Faults and Seismogenesis
  • One of the major themes of the ICDP
  • San Andreas Fault Observatory at Depth (SAFOD), USA
  • Gulf of Corinth, Greece
  • Chelungpu Fault System, Taiwan
  • Drilling active faults in South African Mines

San Andreas

Fault Observatory at Depth (SAFOD)

North American Plate

Test fundamental theories of earthquake mechanics

Establish a long-term observatory in the fault zone

Since 1993

PH 2002

MH 2004/05/07


Drilling Active Faults in South African Mines


(1) Detection of fault failure & earthquake nucleation process

(2) Determine properties of fault-rocks and their changes


Using dense array of broad-band instruments to analyze the (1) Nucleation phases of fault instabilities; (2) Opening modes and motion asymmetry; (3) Dynamic and static stress drops and rupture velocity; (4) Fault zone guided waves; (5) Interaction among sub parallel faults.


Mapping of active fault-zones in boreholes, cores, tunnels


The extreme conditions within fault zone during earthquakes


The injection of fluids into stressed fault zones stimulated seismicity in a wide range of cases observed


Drilling the North Anatolian Fault

The North Anatolian Fault Zone in Turkey

23-27 April 2007 in Istanbul/Turkey


Borehole Monitoring at the Nankai Subduction Zone:

Building a Land-Ocean Borehole Network to Study the Seismogenic Zone

August 20-23, 2007, Nagoya, Japan


Chesapeake Bay

Drilling Project

Workshop in September 2003

Full Proposal in 2004

Coring started Sep 15, 2005

Final depth: 1770 m, 5795 ft (Dec. 4, 2005)

lake peten itza drilling project
Lake Peten Itza Drilling Project

Workshop in August 2003

Full Proposal submitted 2004

Drilling started Feb 3, 2006

Drilling ended, Mar 8, 2006

  • Paleoclimatic history of the northern lowland Neotropics
  • Paleoecology and biogeography of the Maya tropical lowland forest
  • Biogeochemical cycling in deep lake sediments
icdp training course
ICDP Training Course
  • Lake Bosumtwi, Ghana
  • Abono, September, 2004
  • 32 participants from 7 Countries

Joint IODP - ICDP Project:

Shallow-Water Drilling of the New Jersey Continental Shelf:

Determining the Links Between Sediment Architecture and Sea-Level Change


Jack up Platform Inspection, September 2006, courtesy of Greg Mountain




A novel deep drilling rig for the Earth science community

R&D Cooperation w/ Industry

Costs ~ 15 Mio €

Completed = March 07

Tests = 2. Q 07

Commission = 3. Q 07


SAG Review Guidelines (Guide to Presenters)

  • Overview of project/workshop goals and strategy (What are they proposing to do and why?).
  • Proposal history (previous submissions as pre or full proposals. Is proposal result of ICDP-funded workshop?).
  • Quality of science to be addressed (fundamental issues of global significance; also considering need for drilling and societal relevance).
  • Qualifications of proponents (experience and productivity of PIs, breadth and international diversity of science team/workshop attendees, sound project management plan).
  • Adequacy of site characterization (Is drilling target already well defined? Are permitting and environmental approvals in hand?).
  • Technical feasibility (Are we confident project will succeed? Is operational plan logical and well thought through? Is prior experience of PIs or input from OSG well utilized?).
  • Cost effectiveness (Is the budget carefully prepared? Is there an efficient drilling/testing/sampling plan? Does it take advantage of existing holes, cost sharing or linkages to industry?).
  • Summary recommendation by SAG (approve, approve with caveats, modify and resubmit, reject).

Drilling the Eger Rift Workshop

Bykov, CR,

October 2004

52 participants

from 6 countries