John W Lane, Jr., Ph.D.
As Chief of the USGS Hydrogeophysics Branch since 2001, Dr. John W. Lane, Jr. provides leadership and support to USGS offices across the Water Resources Mission Area in the application of geophysical methods for groundwater investigations.
Dr. Lane supervises Branch applied research, technical support, and technology transfer programs utilizing borehole, surface, and airborne geophysical methods including emerging applications of small unmanned aircraft systems.
Dr. Lane's applied research focuses on the development of quantitative geophysical methods in fractured rock and porous media, geophysical assessment of hydrologic processes, and on the application of hydrogeophysical methods for water resource and contamination assessment studies. Development and implementation of geophysical training and support for diverse audiences is a key component of Dr. Lane’s work. Dr. Lane has developed and supervised national, international, regional, and local instruction for USGS scientists and other cooperating agency personnel on the use of geophysics for groundwater exploration, water-resource assessment, and to address groundwater contamination and environmental engineering problems.
Science and Products
Borehole geophysics is the science of recording and analyzing measurements of physical properties made in wells or test holes. Probes that measure different properties are lowered into the borehole to collect continuous or point data that is graphically displayed as a geophysical log. Multiple logs typically are collected to take advantage of their synergistic nature--much more can be learned...
About the Laboratory
The geophysicists and hydrologists at the Hydrogeophysics Laboratory develop, demonstrate, and support the application of geophysical methods to environmental-health investigations. They have expertise in a diverse suite of geophysical field methods including electrical, electromagnetic, seismic, radar, gravity, and thermal; these methods are run...
Example data from MoisturEC: a new R program for moisture content estimation from electrical conductivity data
This dataset includes example data used for demonstration of the moisturEC program. This includes inverted electrical resistivity data, model resolution from the inversion, point moisture information, and conductivity-saturation calibration information. The data are from a field site in Coventry, CT outfitted with five, Decagon 5TE moisture probes, arranged along a 28 m transect at different...
Modeled temperature data developed for study of shallow mountain bedrock limits seepage-based headwater climate refugia, Shenandoah National Park, Virginia: U.S. Geological Survey data release
1D transient numerical simulations with a modified version of the SUTRA model
(preliminary code) that accounts for variably-saturated freeze-thaw dynamics
(e.g. McKenzie and Voss, 2013) to predict annual alluvial aquifer temperature
dynamics using coupled fluid and heat transport physics. The model simulations
were run with a modified version of SUTRA_ICE (unreleased)...
The dual‐domain porosity apparatus: Characterizing dual porosity at the sediment/water interface
The characterization of pore-space connectivity in porous media at the sediment/water interface is critical to understanding contaminant transport and reactive biogeochemical processes in zones of groundwater and surface-water exchange. Previous in situ studies of dual-domain (i.e., mobile/less-mobile porosity) studies have been limited to...Scruggs, Courtney R.; Briggs, Martin A.; Day-Lewis, Frederick D.; Werkema, Dale D.; Lane, John W.
Efficient hydrogeological characterization of remote stream corridors using drones
This project demonstrates the successful use of small unoccupied aircraft system (sUASs) for hydrogeological characterization of a remote stream reach in a rugged mountain terrain. Thermal infrared, visual imagery, and derived digital surface models are used to inform conceptual models of groundwater/surface‐water exchange and efficiently...Briggs, Martin A.; Dawson, Cian B.; Holmquist-Johnson, Christopher; Williams, Kenneth H.; Lane, John W.
Hydrogeochemical controls on brook trout spawning habitats in a coastal stream
Brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) spawn in fall and overwintering egg development can benefit from stable, relatively warm temperatures in groundwater-seepage zones. However, eggs are also sensitive to dissolved oxygen concentration, which may be reduced in discharging groundwater (i.e., seepage). We investigated a 2 km reach of the coastal...Briggs, Martin A.; Harvey, Judson W.; Hurley, Stephen T.; Rosenberry, Donald O.; McCobb, Timothy D.; Werkema, Dale D.; Lane, John W.
Inferring watershed hydraulics and cold-water habitat persistence using multi-year air and stream temperature signals
Streams strongly influenced by groundwater discharge may serve as “climate refugia” for sensitive species in regions of increasingly marginal thermal conditions. The main goal of this study is to develop paired air and stream water annual temperature signal analysis techniques to elucidate the relative groundwater contribution to stream water and...Briggs, Martin A.; Johnson, Zachary C.; Snyder, Craig D.; Hitt, Nathaniel P.; Kurylyk, Barret L.; Lautz, Laura K.; Irvine, Dylan J.; Hurley, Stephen T.; Lane, John W.
Direct observations of hydrologic exchange occurring with less‐mobile porosity and the development of anoxic microzones in sandy lakebed sediments
Quantifying coupled mobile/less‐mobile porosity dynamics is critical to the prediction of biogeochemical storage, release, and transformation processes in the zone where groundwater and surface water exchange. The recent development of fine‐scale geoelectrical monitoring paired with pore‐water sampling in groundwater systems enables direct...Briggs, Martin A.; Day-Lewis, Frederick D.; Dehkordy, Farzaneh Mahmood Poor; Hampton, Tyler; Zarnetske, Jay P.; Scruggs, Courtney R.; Singha, Kamini; Harvey, Judson W.; Lane, John W.
MoisturEC: a new R program for moisture content estimation from electrical conductivity data
Noninvasive geophysical estimation of soil moisture has potential to improve understanding of flow in the unsaturated zone for problems involving agricultural management, aquifer recharge, and optimization of landfill design and operations. In principle, several geophysical techniques (e.g., electrical resistivity, electromagnetic induction, and...Terry, Neil; Day-Lewis, Frederick D.; Werkema, Dale D.; Lane, John W.
Shallow bedrock limits groundwater seepage-based headwater climate refugia
Groundwater/surface-water exchanges in streams are inexorably linked to adjacent aquifer dynamics. As surface-water temperatures continue to increase with climate warming, refugia created by groundwater connectivity is expected to enable cold water fish species to survive. The shallow alluvial aquifers that source groundwater seepage to headwater...Briggs, Martin A.; Lane, John W.; Snyder, Craig D.; White, Eric A.; Johnson, Zachary; Nelms, David L.; Hitt, Nathaniel P.
Scenario Evaluator for Electrical Resistivity survey pre-modeling tool
Geophysical tools have much to offer users in environmental, water resource, and geotechnical fields; however, techniques such as electrical resistivity imaging (ERI) are often oversold and/or overinterpreted due to a lack of understanding of the limitations of the techniques, such as the appropriate depth intervals or resolution of the methods....Terry, Neil; Day-Lewis, Frederick D.; Robinson, Judith L.; Slater, Lee D.; Halford, Keith J.; Binley, Andrew; Lane, John W.; Werkema, Dale D.
Surface geophysical methods for characterising frozen ground in transitional permafrost landscapes
The distribution of shallow frozen ground is paramount to research in cold regions, and is subject to temporal and spatial changes influenced by climate, landscape disturbance and ecosystem succession. Remote sensing from airborne and satellite platforms is increasing our understanding of landscape-scale permafrost distribution, but typically...Briggs, Martin A.; Campbell, Seth; Nolan, Jay; Walvoord, Michelle Ann; Ntarlagiannis, Dimitrios; Day-Lewis, Frederick D.; Lane, John W.
Application of frequency- and time-domain electromagnetic surveys to characterize hydrostratigraphy and landfill construction at the Amargosa Desert Research Site, Beatty, Nevada
In 2014 and 2015, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), conducted frequency-domain electromagnetic (FDEM) surveys at the USGS Amargosa Desert Research Site (ADRS), approximately 17 kilometers (km) south of Beatty, Nevada. The FDEM surveys were conducted within and adjacent to a closed low-level radioactive waste disposal site located at the ADRS....White, Eric A.; Day-Lewis, Frederick D.; Johnson, Carole D.; Lane, John W.
Statistical comparison of methods for estimating sediment thickness from Horizontal-to-Vertical Spectral Ratio (HVSR) seismic methods: An example from Tylerville, Connecticut, USA
Determining sediment thickness and delineating bedrock topography are important for assessing groundwater availability and characterizing contamination sites. In recent years, the horizontal-to-vertical spectral ratio (HVSR) seismic method has emerged as a non-invasive, cost-effective approach for estimating the thickness of unconsolidated...Johnson, Carole D.; Lane, John W.
Influence of groundwater on distribution of dwarf wedgemussels (Alasmidonta heterodon) in the upper reaches of the Delaware River, northeastern USA
The remaining populations of the endangered dwarf wedgemussel (DWM) (Alasmidonta heterodon) in the upper Delaware River, northeastern USA, were hypothesized to be located in areas of greater-than-normal groundwater discharge to the river. We combined physical (seepage meters, monitoring wells and piezometers), thermal (fiber-optic distributed...Rosenberry, Donald O.; Briggs, Martin A.; Voytek, Emily B.; Lane, John W.