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What IS Seismoelectric Groundwater Testing?

When you think about historical methods of searching for groundwater, you may imagine a farmer pacing a field with a divining rod. Thankfully, we have come a long way since then, and now there is a wealth of technology that can be used to accurately map the location of groundwater. This allows landowners to make informed decisions about where to drill their wells.

One of the methods that is often employed for hydrogeological mapping is seismoelectric groundwater testing in California. Find out more about how this method of groundwater location works and whether it’s worth it to invest in professional seismoelectric groundwater testing the next time you need a well drilled.

Basics of the seismoelectric method

As you might know, seismic waves have been used for imaging for a variety of different applications. Through electromagnetic detection, accurate mapping can be done of everything from subterranean features to the topography of the ocean floor. Groundwater surveyors have utilized the seismoelectric method to detect the presence and depth of groundwater deposits and other underground features.

Although seismoelectric technology varies in sophistication and scope, the basic method is consistent. First, a seismic wave will be generated and directed into the ground. When this wave encounters water, it creates a sort of ripple effect, which reverberates back to the surface in the form of an electrical charge. Then the charge is picked up by an antenna or receiver on the surface. The information that is gathered from the seismoelectric process is compiled and processed by a computer, at which point it can be evaluated and analyzed by a surveyor to determine the best site for drilling.

In most cases, a surveyor will be able to assess several different potential drilling sites with the seismoelectric method in a single day. This allows them to compare the potential of several different locations for high water yield in a relatively short amount of time. Although this method can be applied reliably, there are certain factors that can affect its accuracy. Any electrical interference may result in an inaccurate set of data. If, for example, there are power lines nearby, these may create enough electrical noise to interfere with the seismoelectric testing. The method can be implemented at depths of up to several hundred meters, although the testing is usually only done up to 150 meters. This depth is more than sufficient to map groundwater in most areas—wells are typically less than 50 meters deep.

Learn more about seismoelectric groundwater testing in California

If you want to learn more about seismoelectric groundwater testing in California or find out whether this method of groundwater testing could be beneficial on your property, contact the knowledgeable team at National Groundwater Surveyor Inc. We have been a premier provider of groundwater surveying to residents, developers, business owners and agricultural landowners in California since 2003, and we have built a reputation for delivering a superior quality of work and a positive service experience for our customers. For a free quote, give our team a call today.

From single family home sites to large agricultural wells, call National Groundwater Surveyor at 800-980-7429.

We also provide Groundwater Surveys in Nevada and Oregon!

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