Flawed Processing of Airborne EM Data Affecting Hydrogeological Interpretation
Article first published online: 9 JUL 2012
© 2012, The Author(s). Groundwater © 2012, National Ground Water Association
Volume 51, Issue 2, pages 191–202, March/April 2013
How to Cite
Viezzoli, A., Jørgensen, F. and Sørensen, C. (2013), Flawed Processing of Airborne EM Data Affecting Hydrogeological Interpretation. Groundwater, 51: 191–202. doi: 10.1111/j.1745-6584.2012.00958.x
- Issue published online: 6 MAR 2013
- Article first published online: 9 JUL 2012
- Received July 2011, accepted May 2012.
Airborne electromagnetics (AEMs) is increasingly being used across the globe as a tool for groundwater and environmental management. Focus is on ensuring the quality of the source data, their processing and modeling, and the integration of results with ancillary information to generate accurate and relevant products. Accurate processing and editing of raw AEM data, the topic of this article, is one of the crucial steps in obtaining quantitative information for groundwater modeling and management. In this article, we examine the consequences that different levels of processing of helicopter transient electromagnetic method data have on the resulting electrical models and subsequently on hydrogeological models. We focus on different approaches used in the industry for processing of the raw data and show how the electrical resistivity–depth models, which is the end “geophysical” product (after data inversion) of an AEM survey, change with different levels of processing of the raw data. We then extend the study to show the impact on some of the hydrogeological parameters or models, which can be derived from the geophysical results. The consequences of improper handling of raw data to groundwater and environmental management can be significant and expensive.