SIMULATION OF GEOELECTRICAL RESPONSES OF STRUCTURES BURIED IN FRESHWATER AND BRACKISH WATER ENVIRONMENTS
Marine geoelectrical simulation offers the opportunity to predict matrix type, interstitial fluid and geometry of buried structures.In this research, simulation of geoelectrical responses over buried structures in freshwater and brackish water environments were tested. A model tank made of acrylic and housed within an iron frame was built for the experiment. The tank was filled with water and sieved sediment having grain sizes ≤1.18 mm, corresponding to very coarse sand to colloid. Four models were designed namely freshwater static model (FSM), brackish water static model (BSM), freshwater model with buried structures (FMBS), and brackish water model with buried structures (BMBS). A bamboo pipe, metal pipe and granite block were buried in the FMBS and BMBS. Physico-chemical parameters of the water which includes temperature (22.74 – 26.06 °C), salinity (0.07 – 15.72 psu), conductivity (153 – 25,420 µS/cm) and resistivity (5.6 x 103 – 6.6 x 103 Ω-cm) were measured. Dipole-dipole array using inter-electrode separation (a) of 5 cm and 1≤n≤5 was adopted. Resistivity measurements obtained were processed and inverted using non-linear least-square optimization technique. We present obtained results as contoured 2D resistivity structures. FSM and FMBS were characterized by relatively high resistivity values compared with the BSM and BMBS. The buried materials were effectively resolved in the freshwater models, compared to the brackish water model due to higher contrast in resistivity between the material and saturating fluid. The bamboo pipe was not effectively delineated in the brackish water medium, as a result ofthe low resistivity contrast which exists between the medium and the material. Zones with high compaction are characterized by high resistivity values, while concealed channel structures were characterized bylow compaction. Estimated depth were exact for the freshwater models but was over estimated by ~12.5% in the brackish water models. Marine electrical resistivity method shows great potential in mapping structures buried in medium with high contrasting resistivity values, and sedimentary structures with varying degree of compaction.
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