Geophysical constraints on Rio Grande rift structure and stratigraphy from magnetotelluric models and borehole resistivity logs, northern New Mexico

By:  and 
Edited by: Mark R. Hudson and V.J.S. Grauch

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Abstract

Two- and three-dimensional electrical resistivity models derived from the magnetotelluric method were interpreted to provide more accurate hydrogeologic parameters for the Albuquerque and Española Basins. Analysis and interpretation of the resistivity models are aided by regional borehole resistivity data. Examination of the magnetotelluric response of hypothetical stratigraphic cases using resistivity characterizations from the borehole data elucidates two scenarios where the magnetotelluric method provides the strongest constraints. In the first scenario, the magnetotelluric method constrains the thickness of extensive volcanic cover, the underlying thickness of coarser-grained facies of buried Santa Fe Group sediments, and the depth to Precambrian basement or overlying Pennsylvanian limestones. In the second scenario, in the absence of volcanic cover, the magnetotelluric method constrains the thickness of coarser-grained facies of buried Santa Fe Group sediments and the depth to Precambrian basement or overlying Pennsylvanian limestones. Magnetotelluric surveys provide additional constraints on the relative positions of basement rocks and the thicknesses of Paleozoic, Mesozoic, and Tertiary sedimentary rocks in the region of the Albuquerque and Española Basins. The northern extent of a basement high beneath the Cerros del Rio volcanic field is delineated. Our results also reveal that the largest offset of the Hubbell Spring fault zone is located 5 km west of the exposed scarp. By correlating our resistivity models with surface geology and the deeper stratigraphic horizons using deep well log data, we are able to identify which of the resistivity variations in the upper 2 km belong to the upper Santa Fe Group sediment

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Additional publication details

Publication type Book chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Title Geophysical constraints on Rio Grande rift structure and stratigraphy from magnetotelluric models and borehole resistivity logs, northern New Mexico
DOI 10.1130/2013.2494(13)
Volume 494
Year Published 2013
Language English
Publisher Geological Society of America
Contributing office(s) Crustal Geophysics and Geochemistry Science Center
Description 22 p.
Larger Work Type Book
Larger Work Subtype Monograph
Larger Work Title New perspectives on Rio Grande Rift Basins: From tectonics to groundwater
First page 323
Last page 344
Country United States
State New Mexico