A Generalized Approach for the Interpretation of Geophysical Well Logs in Ground-Water Studies - Theory and Application

Ground Water



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Quantitative analysis of geophysical logs in ground-water studies often involves at least as broad a range of applications and variation in lithology as is typically encountered in petroleum exploration, making such logs difficult to calibrate and complicating inversion problem formulation. At the same time, data inversion and analysis depend on inversion model formulation and refinement, so that log interpretation cannot be deferred to a geophysical log specialist unless active involvement with interpretation can be maintained by such an expert over the lifetime of the project. We propose a generalized log-interpretation procedure designed to guide hydrogeologists in the interpretation of geophysical logs, and in the integration of log data into ground-water models that may be systematically refined and improved in an iterative way. The procedure is designed to maximize the effective use of three primary contributions from geophysical logs: (1) The continuous depth scale of the measurements along the well bore; (2) The in situ measurement of lithologic properties and the correlation with hydraulic properties of the formations over a finite sample volume; and (3) Multiple independent measurements that can potentially be inverted for multiple physical or hydraulic properties of interest. The approach is formulated in the context of geophysical inversion theory, and is designed to be interfaced with surface geophysical soundings and conventional hydraulic testing. The step-by-step procedures given in our generalized interpretation and inversion technique are based on both qualitative analysis designed to assist formulation of the interpretation model, and quantitative analysis used to assign numerical values to model parameters. The approach bases a decision as to whether quantitative inversion is statistically warranted by formulating an over-determined inversion. If no such inversion is consistent with the inversion model, quantitative inversion is judged not possible with the given data set. Additional statistical criteria such as the statistical significance of regressions are used to guide the subsequent calibration of geophysical data in terms of hydraulic variables in those situations where quantitative data inversion is considered appropriate.

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A Generalized Approach for the Interpretation of Geophysical Well Logs in Ground-Water Studies - Theory and Application
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Ground Water
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