Direct push driven in situ color logging tool for high resolution characterization of soils and unconsolidated sediments

Monday, October 5, 2015
Joerg Hausmann, Thomas Vienken, Ulrike Werban and Peter Dietrich, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research UFZ Leipzig, Department Monitoring and Exploration Technologies, Leipzig, Germany
Direct push technologies have recently seen a broad development providing several tools for in situ parameterization of unconsolidated sediments. One of these techniques is the measurement of soil colors – a proxy information that reveals to soil/sediment properties. We introduce the direct push driven color logging tool (CLT) for real-time and depth-resolved investigation of soil colors within the visible spectrum. Until now, no routines exist on how to handle high-resolved (mm-scale) soil color data. To develop such a routine, we transform raw data (CIEXYZ) into soil color surrogates of selected color spaces (CIExyZ, CIEL*a*b*, CIEL*c*h*, sRGB) and denoise small-scale natural variability by Haar and Daublet wavelet transformation, gathering interpretable color logs over depth. However, interpreting color log data as a single application remains challenging. Additional information, such as site-specific knowledge of the geological setting, is required to correlate soil color data to specific layers properties. Hence, we exemplary provide results from a joint interpretation of in situ-obtained soil color data and ‘state-of-the-art’ direct push based profiling tool data and discuss the benefit of additional data. The developed routine is capable of transferring the provided information obtained as colorimetric data into interpretable color surrogates. Soil color data proved to correlate with small-scale lithological/chemical changes (e.g., grain size, oxidative and reductive conditions), especially when combined with additional direct push vertical high resolution data (e.g., cone penetration testing and soil sampling). Thus, the technique allows enhanced profiling by means of providing another reproducible high-resolution parameter for analysis subsurface conditions. This opens potential new areas of application and new outputs for such data in site investigation.