Title Cave’s Cryosphere and Climate
Link to website C3
Project duration 11/2016 - 11/2019
GeoZS role in project Project partner
GeoZS contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


The project aims at monitoring, studying, dating and modelling of caves in the Eastern Alps that are interested by permanent ice deposits. The focus area is the Canin massif, one of the most karstified areas of the entire alpine chain. The project results will bring new knowledge on microclimate dynamics acting in such environments and interactions between climate change and the underground cryosphere. This matter has also important implications on the hydrology of the alpine karst aquifer under climate changes for the estimation of groundwater reserves.

Work packages (WP):

WP 1: Exploration and selection of at least 2 cavities (dynamic ice caves type) in order to install environmental monitoring probes; geomorphological surveys; geophysical surveys; microclimatic monitoring

WP 2: Selection of a set of static ice caves to perform seasonal and annual mass balance surveys

WP 3: Selection, extraction, analysis and dating of organic and calcite inclusions into the ice for a better comprehension and chronology of the paleoclimatic evolution of the area

WP 4: LiDAR surveys to perform mass balance monitoring of selected static ice caves

WP 5: Publishing the results in high quality, international peer-reviewed journals and present these at major international conferences

WP 6: Dissemination and exploitation of results through media, the dedicated website, the Fb page, and the facilities of the Julian Prealps Nature Park; production of a documentary film to have an impact on a wider audience and to be presented at national/international film-festival; organization of a final-conference at the end of the project to present results

WP 7: Promoting an international summer school dedicated to PhD students and Post Doc, but open to M.Sc. students as well, if enrolled in dedicated research projects fitting with the aims of the project

Lead partner and funding body: Commissione Grotte E.Boegan, Società Alpina delle Giulie (CAI)

Scientific Lead Partner: Climate and Paleoclimate Research Group, ISMAR-CNR Trieste, Italy


  • Exploration Geophysics Group (EGG) University of Trieste, Italy
  • Climate Change Research Group, Insubria University in Varese, Italy
  • Isotope geochemistry group, Cà Foscari University in Venice, Italy
  • Bologna University, Italy – M.Sc thesis project
  • Julian Prealps Nature Park, Italy
  • Quaternary Research Group, Innsbruck University, Austria
  • Geological Survey of Slovenia, Slovenia

Other cooperations:

  • Laboratory of Environmental Chemistry, Paul Scherrer Institut, Switzerland
  • ColdLab Milano Bicocca University
  • Institute for the physics of the Environment, Heidelberg University, Germany
  • Institute for the Dynamics of Environmental Processes – IDPA CNR Venice, Italy
  • Palynology and Archaeobotany Research Group, Institut für Botanik, Innsbruck University, Austria