In order to assess the thickness and the inner structure of some permanent ice deposits in two high elevated alpine karstic caves of the Canin massif (Alpi Giulie, Italy), we performed several multi frequency Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) surveys. The surveys have been conducted within the project MONICA (MOnitoring of Ice within Caves), aimed at the paleoclimatic characterization of the considered cave ice deposits. GPR surveys have proved to be crucial also in finding the most suitable place for carrying out a drilling core. This has been particularly useful in the Vasto’s ice cave (VIC) in which the direct/visual estimation of the thickness and the debris content of the ice body was not possible, while the Mt. Leupa’s ice cave (LIC) has allowed to test the results of the radar thanks to the total exposure of an ice wall. The possibility to verify the presence of an air cavity, highlighted during the GPR surveys, was a further crucial detail. The thickness of the ice deposits, their internal structure and the peculiar internal layering has been here presented and discussed. Some features highlighted by the GPR traces have been furthermore interpreted as evidence of dynamic within the ice mass in the small glacieret existing at the entrance of the Vasto cave, probably driven by the presence of karstic voids within the rock mass.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/rr_colucci/1/