Adaptive Fusion of Information for Seeing into Ordos Basin, China: A China-Germany-US Joint Venture.

Monday, 15 December 2014
Tian-Chyi J Yeh1, Lihe Yin2, Martin Sauter3, Rui Hu3, Thomas Ptak3 and Guangcai Hou2, (1)University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, United States, (2)Xi'an Center of Geological Survey, Xian, China, (3)University of Göttingen, Geosciences Center, Göttingen, Germany
Adaptive fusion of information for seeing into geological basins is the theme of this joint venture. The objective of this venture is to initiate possible collaborations between scientists from China, Germany, and US to develop innovative technologies, which can be utilized to characterize geological and hydrological structures and processes as well as other natural resources in regional scale geological basins of hundreds of thousands of kilometers (i.e., the Ordos Basin, China). This adaptive fusion of information aims to assimilate active (manmade) and passive (natural) hydrologic and geophysical tomography surveys to enhance our ability of seeing into hydrogeological basins at the resolutions of our interests. The active hydrogeophysical tomography refers to recently developed hydraulic tomgoraphic surveys by Chinese and German scientists, as well as well-established geophysical tomography surveys (such as electrical resistivity tomography, cross-borehole radars, electrical magnetic surveys). These active hydrogeophysical tomgoraphic surveys have been proven to be useful high-resolution surveys for geological media of tens and hundreds of meters wide and deep. For basin-scale (i.e., tens and hundreds of kilometers) problems, their applicabilities are however rather limited. The passive hydrogeophysical tomography refers to unexplored technologies that exploit natural stimuli as energy sources for tomographic surveys, which include direct lightning strikes, groundwater level fluctuations due to earthquakes, river stage fluctuations, precipitation storms, barometric pressure variations, and long term climate changes. These natural stimuli are spatially varying, recurrent, and powerful, influencing geological media over great distances and depths (e.g., tens and hundreds of kilometers). Monitoring hydrological and geophysical responses of geological media to these stimuli at different locations is tantamount to collecting data of naturally occurring tomographic surveys. Exploiting natural stimuli as tomographic surveys is a novel concept for cost-effective characterization and monitor of subsurface processes in regional-scale basins at great depths.