Geophysical mapping of produced water in near-surface environments

Science Center Objects

This task within the Oil and Gas Waters Project focuses on the development of oil and gas resources results in substantial volumes of produced water.  Particularly when produced from deep geologic formations, these waters can exhibit elevated salinity in comparison to shallow groundwater at the same location.  Knowing the spatial and temporal occurrence of high salinity produced water in groundwater aquifers can enhance environmental management, identify potential contamination pathways, and provide insight into the hydrogeologic conditions that may be explanatory factors for other studies related to geochemistry, ecosystem health, or groundwater quality and supply.  The objectives of this task are (1) to locate produced water in soil and groundwater aquifers through the use of borehole, surface, and airborne geophysical methods and (2) to advance the application of geophysical techniques in infrastructure-rich environments typical of oil field and near-field settings.