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3-D Inversion of Previous HitMagnetotelluricNext Hit Data Collected for Hydrothermal Exploration


Previous HitMagnetotelluricNext Hit (Previous HitMTNext Hit) sounding is a popular choice of a geophysical Previous HitmethodNext Hit for geothermal exploration (e.g. Newman et al., 2008). Geoelectrical model of the subsurface can be recovered by 3D inversion of Previous HitMTNext Hit data. Distribution of electrical conductivity obtained from Previous HitMTNext Hit inversion can help identify altered areas saturated with hydrothermal fluids, indicate possible fluid paths, as well as locate deep reservoir itself.

In our paper we derive an efficient Previous HitmethodNext Hit for inversion of Previous HitMTNext Hit data using Gauss-Newton Previous HitmethodNext Hit in data space. Gauss-Newton Previous HitmethodNext Hit is one of the most popular approaches to solving inverse problems in geophysics. The major obstacle to applying the Gauss-Newton Previous HitmethodNext Hit in model space is the need to invert a large square matrix with both dimensions equal to the number of model parameters. In modern applications, the number of model parameters can be on the order of millions. Storage and operations with a matrix of this size can be unmanageable on a typical workstation, or even on a moderately sized cluster. Several researchers (e.g. Kordy et al., 2016) described and applied Gauss-Newton inversion in the data space. The size of the corresponding square Hessian matrix in the data space is reduced to both dimensions equal to the number of data points. The data space RGN formulation is equivalent to the model space formulation.

An example of inversion of Previous HitMTNext Hit data collected in the area with known geothermal resources is presented. We applied our Previous HitmethodNext Hit to the data from Sevier Thermal Belt located in southwestern Utah. Resulting conductivity model indicated possible location of the magma reservoir, possible paths of geothermal fluids, and the location of saturated altered rocks in the subsurface.

Newman, G.A., E. Gasperikova, G.M. Hoversten, and P.E. Wannamaker, 2008, Three-dimensional Previous HitmagnetotelluricNext Hit characterization of the Coso geothermal field: Geothermics, 37, 369 – 399.

Kordy, M., P.Wannamaker, V. Maris, E. Cherkaev, and G. Hill, 2016, 3-dimensional Previous HitmagnetotelluricTop inversion including topography using deformed hexahedral edge finite elements and direct solvers parallelized on symmetric multiprocessor computers – Part II: direct data-space inverse solution, Geophysical Journal International, 204, 94-110.