Skip to main content

Why use geophysics?

How to measure physical properties?

The study of the physics of the Earth and it’s environment in space

Geophysics is a scientific discipline that focuses on studying the physical properties and processes of the Earth and other celestial bodies. It involves using principles and techniques from physics to investigate the Earth’s interior, its surface, and its interactions with various forces and energies. Geophysics plays a crucial role in understanding the structure, composition, and behavior of the Earth, as well as in addressing geological, environmental, and natural resource-related questions.

Geophysicists employ a variety of methods and instruments to gather data about the Earth’s properties. Some common techniques used in geophysics include seismology where seismic waves generated by earthquakes or man-made sources is used to map the Earth’s interior structure, including the different layers such as the crust, mantle, and core. It also includes TEM (transient electromagnetic) which uses electromagnetic fields to investigate the Earth’s subsurface by measuring how currents diffuse in the geological layers. 

It has wide-ranging applications across industries, contributing to resource exploration, environmental management, infrastructure development, archaeology, and climate research. By employing geophysical instruments, informed decisions can be made, mitigate risks, and ensure sustainable practices in their respective fields

What type of problems are adressed? 

For a list of our case studies, please see the menu above

What geophysical applications are possible?

Please see our products to read more about our instruments at TEMcompany

What is Transient Electromagnetic (TEM)? 

The sTEM & tTEM instruments both transmit electromagnetic fields into the ground. In general, the TEM method works by turn off a strong current running in the transmitter loop placed on the ground surface. This current can be in the order of 1 – 30 Amp and it is turned off in amazing 2 – 5 millionth of a second. Turning the current of induces currents in the subsurface and these currents diffuse downwards and outwards very similar to smoke rings. In this diffusion process the currents are turned into heat so they change magnitude and hence, their associated magnetic fields will also change magnitude. It is the rate of change of the magnetic fields which gives a changing flux in the receiver coil, and this gives a voltage change measured by the receiver. An entire measurement takes typically from 1 – 10 thousand of a second and to get a signal this process are repeated hundreds of times per second.  The rate of change of the measured voltage is dependent on the conductivity of the subsurface layers

Other geophysical methods:

  1. Gravity and Gravimetry: Measuring variations in the Earth’s gravitational field to infer information about subsurface density variations, such as the presence of underground structures like mountains or oil reservoirs. 
  2. Magnetometry: Measuring variations in the Earth’s magnetic field to identify and map subsurface geological features, including faults and mineral deposits. 
  3. Geodesy: Precisely measuring the Earth’s shape, rotation, and gravitational field to understand processes like plate tectonics and sea-level changes. 
  4. Remote Sensing: Collecting data from satellites and aircraft to study changes in the Earth’s surface, such as land deformation, vegetation health, and ocean currents. 
  5. Geothermal Methods: Studying the Earth’s heat flow and thermal properties to understand processes like mantle convection and energy extraction from the Earth’s interior. 
  6. Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR): Using radar pulses to image the subsurface and detect buried objects or structures. 

TEMcompany Products