Environmental geophysics is the application
of geophysical prospecting techniques to
ESRI-SC uses seismic reflection,
seismic refraction, resistivity, and
borehole logging techniques to characterize
the shallow subsurface.
Depths of investigation are commonly
less than 150 feet.
Past projects have involved mapping
shallow aquifers, buried channels, and
faults to determine contaminant preferential
Other projects have used shallow
seismic data to assist in seismic hazard
Electrical resistivity soundings have
been used to map saltwater intrusion and
contaminant plumes at landfills and
ESRI-SC is conducting research on the use of
seismic amplitude variation with offset (AVO)
attributes to directly detect dense
nonaqueous phase liquid contaminants (DNAPLs).
Other research involves the use of
high-resolution shear-wave seismic
reflection profiling and vertical seismic
profiling (VSP) for site characterization.
An extensive array of geophysical field
apparatus is used that includes a
120-channel seismograph, cables, geophones,
borehole geophone, and various seismic
State-of-the-art data processing facilities
are maintained in a 1000 sq. ft. laboratory
dedicated to environmental geophysics
research. ESRI-SC field crews and
geophysicists have completed geophysical
research projects in: Alabama, Colorado,
Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky,
Nebraska, South Carolina, and Washington.
Project sponsors include various
state and federal government agencies and
ESRI-SC has extensive capabilities for the
acquisition, processing, interpretation and
modeling of seismic reflection and
refraction data. In recent years ESRI-SC has
collected and processed numerous
high-resolution seismic reflection surveys
using vibroseis, sledge hammer, buffalo gun
and EWG-1 (weight drop) sources. In
addition, ESRI-SC has collected 3-D high
resolution seismic reflection data, numerous
VSPs and S-wave reflection data.