Gamma-ray Spectrometry in Geothermal Exploration: State of the Art Techniques
AbstractGamma-ray spectrometry is a surveying technique that allows the calculation of the heat produced during radioactive decay of potassium, uranium, and thorium within rock. Radiogenic heat producing rocks are often targets for geothermal exploration and production. Hence, refinements in gamma-ray spectrometry surveying will allow better constraint of resources estimation and help to target drilling. Gamma-rays have long half-lengths compared to other radiation produced during radiogenic decay. This property allows the gamma-rays to penetrate far enough through media to be detected by airborne or ground based surveying. A recent example of ground-based surveying in Scotland shows the ability of gamma-ray spectrometry to quickly and efficiently categorize granite plutons as low or high heat producing. Some sedimentary rocks (e.g., black shales) also have high radiogenic heat production properties and could be future geothermal targets. Topographical, atmospheric and spatial distribution factors (among others) can complicate the collection of accurate gamma-ray data in the field. Quantifying and dealing with such inaccuracies represents an area for further improvement of these techniques for geothermal applications. View Full-Text
Share & Cite This Article
McCay, A.T.; Harley, T.L.; Younger, P.L.; Sanderson, D.C.W.; Cresswell, A.J. Gamma-ray Spectrometry in Geothermal Exploration: State of the Art Techniques. Energies 2014, 7, 4757-4780.
McCay AT, Harley TL, Younger PL, Sanderson DCW, Cresswell AJ. Gamma-ray Spectrometry in Geothermal Exploration: State of the Art Techniques. Energies. 2014; 7(8):4757-4780.Chicago/Turabian Style
McCay, Alistair T.; Harley, Thomas L.; Younger, Paul L.; Sanderson, David C.W.; Cresswell, Alan J. 2014. "Gamma-ray Spectrometry in Geothermal Exploration: State of the Art Techniques." Energies 7, no. 8: 4757-4780.