12 Jul 2011
Team members Christoph Spötl, Andrea Borsato, Yuri Dublyansky, Denise Braunhofer, Renza Miorandi, Michele Zandonati and Vanessa Johnston spent three days at this high-alpine cave. Tasks included a cave survey, installation of temperature logging probes, water sampling, documentation and sampling of speleothems. The latter was accomplished using drilling in order to minimize the impact on this protected site within the Fanes-Senes-Braies Nature Park.
Initial observations suggest a major phase of flowstone and stalagmite formation which probably dates back to the Neogene or earliest Pleistocene, followed by a volumetrically much less abundant later phase of stalactite and stalagmite deposition, which already postdated the onset of collapse of the cave. Even these speleothems show evidence of corrosion and later destruction.
We obtained a series of cores totalling ca. 7 m in length which will form the basis for laboratory studies over the next two years.
For further information about the project see also here.