International Geologiical Congress - Oslo 2008


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EIE-07 High-resolution geophysical imaging of geological structures and processes in environmental studies


Advances in 3D and 4D self-potential tomography and applications to ground water flow and contaminant plumes


André Revil, Colorado School of Mines / LGIT-CNRS (United States)


Self-potential corresponds to the passive measurements, at the surface of the Earth or in boleholes, of polarization processes occurring in the subsoil using networks of non-polarizing electrodes. Once filtered for spurious sources, two main mechanisms are responsible for the observed self-potential signals: (1) ground water flow (through the so-called electrokinetic effect) and (2) redox potential (the so-called geobattery process). We propose a general theoretical mechanistic framework to simulate these two sources including the effect of the resistivity and texture / bacterial processes affecting the measured response.

We also propose an inverse theory based on solving the Poisson equation that can incorporate a prior information, uncertainty on the measured data and model parameters using a Bayesian framework. I will also discussed joint inversion strategies of self-potential data with other geophysical methods. Applications will be shown in thelds of hydrogeophysics and volcanology.


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