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Loke M.H.,Geotomo Software | Wilkinson P.B.,British Geological Survey | Chambers J.E.,British Geological Survey | Strutt M.,British Geological Survey
Geophysical Prospecting

The use of optimized arrays generated using the 'Compare R' method for cross-borehole resistivity measurements is examined in this paper. We compare the performances of two array optimization algorithms, one that maximizes the model resolution and another that minimizes the point spread value. Although both algorithms give similar results, the model resolution maximization algorithm is several times faster. A study of the point spread function plots for a cross-borehole survey shows that the model resolution within the central zone surrounded by the borehole electrodes is much higher than near the bottom end of the boreholes. Tests with synthetic and experimental data show that the optimized arrays generated by the 'Compare R' method have significantly better resolution than a 'standard' measurement sequence used in previous surveys. The resolution of the optimized arrays is less if arrays with both current (or both potential) electrodes in the same borehole are excluded. However, they are still better than the 'standard' arrays. © 2013 European Association of Geoscientists & Engineers. Source

Rucker D.F.,HydroGEOPHYSICS Inc. | Loke M.H.,Geotomo Software | Levitt M.T.,HydroGEOPHYSICS Inc. | Noonan G.E.,HydroGEOPHYSICS Inc.

An electrical-resistivity survey was completed at the T tank farm at the Hanford nuclear site in Washington State, U.S.A. The purpose of the survey was to define the lateral extent of waste plumes in the vadose zone in and around the tank farm. The T tank farm consists of single-shell tanks that historically have leaked and many liquid-waste-disposal facilities that provide a good target for resistivity mapping. Given that the site is highly industrialized with near-surface metallic infrastructure that potentially could mask any interpretable waste plume, it was necessary to use the many wells around the site as long electrodes. To accommodate the long electrodes and to simulate the effects of a linear conductor, the resistivity inversion code was modified to assign low-resistivity values to the well's location. The forward model within the resistivity code was benchmarked for accuracy against an analytic solution, and the inverse model was tested for its ability to recreate images of a hypothetical target. The results of the tank-farm field survey showed large, low-resistivity targets beneath the disposal areas that coincided with the conceptual hydrogeologic models developed regarding the releases. Additionally, in areas of minimal infrastructure, the long-electrode method matched the lateral footprint of a 3D surface-resistivity survey with reasonable fidelity. Based on these results, the long-electrode resistivity method may provide a new strategy for environmental characterization at highly industrialized sites, provided a sufficient number and density of wells exist. © 2010 Society of Exploration Geophysicists. Source

Loke M.H.,Geotomo Software | Chambers J.E.,Natural Environment Research Council | Rucker D.F.,HydroGEOPHYSICS Inc. | Kuras O.,Natural Environment Research Council | Wilkinson P.B.,Natural Environment Research Council
Journal of Applied Geophysics

There have been major improvements in instrumentation, field survey design and data inversion techniques for the geoelectrical method over the past 25. years. Multi-electrode and multi-channel systems have made it possible to conduct large 2-D, 3-D and even 4-D surveys efficiently to resolve complex geological structures that were not possible with traditional 1-D surveys. Continued developments in computer technology, as well as fast data inversion techniques and software, have made it possible to carry out the interpretation on commonly available microcomputers. Multi-dimensional geoelectrical surveys are now widely used in environmental, engineering, hydrological and mining applications. 3-D surveys play an increasingly important role in very complex areas where 2-D models suffer from artifacts due to off-line structures. Large areas on land and water can be surveyed rapidly with computerized dynamic towed resistivity acquisition systems. The use of existing metallic wells as long electrodes has improved the detection of targets in areas where they are masked by subsurface infrastructure. A number of PC controlled monitoring systems are also available to measure and detect temporal changes in the subsurface. There have been significant advancements in techniques to automatically generate optimized electrodes array configurations that have better resolution and depth of investigation than traditional arrays. Other areas of active development include the translation of electrical values into geological parameters such as clay and moisture content, new types of sensors, estimation of fluid or ground movement from time-lapse images and joint inversion techniques. In this paper, we investigate the recent developments in geoelectrical imaging and provide a brief look into the future of where the science may be heading. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. Source

Loke M.H.,Geotomo Software | Dahlin T.,Lund University | Rucker D.F.,HydroGEOPHYSICS Inc.
Near Surface Geophysics

Three-dimensional resistivity surveys and their associated inversion models are required to accurately resolve structures exhibiting very complex geology. In the same light, 3D resistivity surveys collected at multiple times are required to resolve temporally varying conditions. In this work we present 3D data sets, both synthetic and real, collected at different times. The large spatiooral data sets are then inverted simultaneously using a least-squares methodology that incorporates roughness filters in both the space and time domains. The spatial roughness filter constrains the model resistivity to vary smoothly in the x-, y- and z-directions. A temporal roughness filter is also applied that minimizes changes in the resistivity between successive temporal inversion models and the L-curve method is used to determine the optimum weights for both spatial and temporal roughness filters. We show that the use of the temporal roughness filter can accurately resolve changes in the resistivity even in the presence of noise. The L1- and L2-norm constraints for the temporal roughness filter are first examined using a synthetic model. The synthetic data test shows that the L1-norm temporal constraint produces significantly more accurate results when the resistivity changes abruptly with time. The model obtained with the L1-norm temporal constraint is also less sensitive to random noise compared with independent inversions (i.e., without any temporal constraint) and the L2-norm temporal constraint. Anomalies that are common in models using independent inversions and the L2-norm and L1-norm temporal constraints are likely to be real. In contrast, anomalies present in a model using independent inversions but that are significantly reduced with the L2-norm and L1-norm constraints are likely artefacts. For field data sets, the method successfully recovered temporal changes in the subsurface resistivity from a landfill monitoring survey due to rainwater infiltration, as well as from an experiment to map the migration of sodium cyanide solution from an injection well using surface and borehole electrodes in an area with significant topography. © 2014 European Association of Geoscientists & Engineers. Source

Rucker D.F.,HydroGEOPHYSICS Inc. | Fink J.B.,HydroGEOPHYSICS Inc. | Loke M.H.,Geotomo Software
Journal of Applied Geophysics

Highly industrialized areas pose challenges for surface electrical resistivity characterization due to metallic infrastructure. The infrastructure is typically more conductive than the desired targets and will mask the deeper subsurface information. The risk of this occurring may be minimized if steel-cased wells are used as long electrodes in the area near the target. We demonstrate a method of using long electrodes to electrically monitor a simulated leak from an underground storage tank with both synthetic examples and a field demonstration. Although the method of using long electrodes has been proposed by others, no time-lapse resistivity data have been collected, modeled, and analyzed within a nuclear waste tank farm environment. Therefore, the main objective of this work was to test whether the long electrode method using steel-cased wells can be employed to spatially and temporally track simulated leaks in a highly industrialized setting. A secondary objective was to apply a time-lapse regularization procedure in the inverse modeling code, similar to the 4D tomography approach by Kim et al. (2009), and to test the procedure's effect on the quality of the outcome regarding plume intensity and position.For the synthetic examples, a simple target of varying electrical properties was placed beneath different types of layers of low resistivity to simulate the effects of the infrastructure. Both surface and long electrodes were tested on the synthetic domain, and the test cases covered a variety of survey parameters including low and high electrode density, noise, array type, and the explicit location of the wells relative to the target. All data were processed in four dimensions, where the regularization procedure was applied in both the time and space domains. The synthetic test case showed that the long electrode resistivity method could detect relative changes in resistivity that was commensurate with the differing target properties. The surface electrodes, on the other hand, had a more difficult time matching the original target's footprint unless the electrodes were distributed at a greater density on the surface. The simulated tank leak in the field experiment was conducted by injecting a high conductivity fluid in a perforated well within the S tank farm at the Hanford Site, and the resistivity measurements were made before and after the leak test. The field results showed a lowered resistivity feature develops south of the injection site after cessation of the injections. The parameter used in the time-lapsed inversion had a strong influence on the differences in inverted resistivity between the pre- and post-injection datasets, but the interpretation of the target was consistent across all values of the parameter. The long electrode electrical resistivity monitoring (ERM) method may provide a tool for near real-time monitoring of leaking underground storage tanks given a sufficient density of wells. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. Source

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