Special Issue "Subsurface Thermography and the Use of Temperature in Geosciences"

A special issue of Geosciences (ISSN 2076-3263). This special issue belongs to the section "Geophysics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (10 May 2019)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Thomas Hermans

Department of Geology, Universiteit Gent, Ghent, Belgium
Website | E-Mail
Interests: uncertainty quantification; sensitivity analysis; geophysical surveys; subsurface modeling; shallow geothermal systems; data integration; inversion
Guest Editor
Prof. Frédéric Nguyen

Urban and Environmental Engineering, Universite de Liege, Liege, Belgium
Website | E-Mail
Interests: inverse problems; data assimilation; applied geophysics; geothermy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue of Geosciences aims to gather high-quality and original research articles, reviews and technical notes on the estimation of temperature in the subsurface (thermography) and the use of temperature to study or model subsurface processes at different scales ranging from shallow to deep systems.

Temperature distribution in the subsurface generally reveal important information on underlying processes at various scales such as geothermal systems, hydrothermal occurrences, river-groundwater exchanges, or geophysical fluid flow for instance. In addition, temperature can influence processes such as groundwater flow, storage of nuclear wastes or degradation of contaminants. Heat can also be used as a natural or induced tracer to understand the complexity and heterogeneity of the subsurface as well as exchange processes. The estimation of the temperature distribution and its assimilation in modeling is therefore of major importance for many different topics in geosciences. However, it remains challenging due to the inherent difficulty in estimating temperature at various scales and depths.

In the past decade, technologies such as distributed temperature sensing, electrical resistivity tomography or airborne thermographic surveys have been developed to help scientists and engineers to image the spatio-temporal distribution of temperature with a large spatial coverage and high resolution and, in combination with modelling, understand the often coupled processes at the origin of the observed anomalies. Nevertheless, many efforts remain to improve the analysis of the data and their integration in geothermal, geological, hydrological, geomechanical or hydrogeological models, among others.

Therefore, we would like to invite you to submit articles about your recent work (theoretical, experimental, numerical or methodological), with respect to the above topics and related topics:

  • Improvement in existing techniques for temperature estimation
  • Development of new techniques for temperature estimation
  • Integration of spatially/temporally distributed temperature in models
  • Use of temperature as a proxy/tracer for other subsurface processes
  • Modeling heat flow and transport in the subsurface
  • Modeling coupled processes where temperature plays a role

We also encourage you to send us a short abstract outlining the purpose of the research and the principal results obtained, in order to verify at an early stage if the contribution you intend to submit fits with the objectives of the Special Issue. We remain at your disposal for more information.

Prof. Thomas Hermans
Prof. Frédéric Nguyen
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Geosciences is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 850 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Geothermal energy
  • Hydrothermal and volcanic systems
  • Heat tracer
  • Remote sensing
  • Geophysical prospecting
  • Thermal and hydro(geo)logical modelling (TH)
  • Thermo-hydro-mechanical processes (THM)

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Comparison of Hydraulic and Tracer Tomography for Discrete Fracture Network Inversion
Geosciences 2019, 9(6), 274; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9060274
Received: 7 May 2019 / Revised: 14 June 2019 / Accepted: 18 June 2019 / Published: 21 June 2019
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Abstract
Fractures serve as highly conductive preferential flow paths for fluids in rocks, which are difficult to exactly reconstruct in numerical models. Especially, in low-conductive rocks, fractures are often the only pathways for advection of solutes and heat. The presented study compares the results [...] Read more.
Fractures serve as highly conductive preferential flow paths for fluids in rocks, which are difficult to exactly reconstruct in numerical models. Especially, in low-conductive rocks, fractures are often the only pathways for advection of solutes and heat. The presented study compares the results from hydraulic and tracer tomography applied to invert a theoretical discrete fracture network (DFN) that is based on data from synthetic cross-well testing. For hydraulic tomography, pressure pulses in various injection intervals are induced and the pressure responses in the monitoring intervals of a nearby observation well are recorded. For tracer tomography, a conservative tracer is injected in different well levels and the depth-dependent breakthrough of the tracer is monitored. A recently introduced transdimensional Bayesian inversion procedure is applied for both tomographical methods, which adjusts the fracture positions, orientations, and numbers based on given geometrical fracture statistics. The used Metropolis-Hastings-Green algorithm is refined by the simultaneous estimation of the measurement error’s variance, that is, the measurement noise. Based on the presented application to invert the two-dimensional cross-section between source and the receiver well, the hydraulic tomography reveals itself to be more suitable for reconstructing the original DFN. This is based on a probabilistic representation of the inverted results by means of fracture probabilities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Subsurface Thermography and the Use of Temperature in Geosciences)
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Open AccessArticle
Time-Lapse 3D Electric Tomography for Short-time Monitoring of an Experimental Heat Storage System
Geosciences 2019, 9(4), 167; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9040167
Received: 21 March 2019 / Revised: 5 April 2019 / Accepted: 9 April 2019 / Published: 11 April 2019
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Abstract
A borehole thermal energy storage living lab was built nearby Torino (Northern Italy). The aim of this living lab is to test the ability of the alluvial deposits of the north-western Po Plain to store the thermal energy collected by solar panels. Monitoring [...] Read more.
A borehole thermal energy storage living lab was built nearby Torino (Northern Italy). The aim of this living lab is to test the ability of the alluvial deposits of the north-western Po Plain to store the thermal energy collected by solar panels. Monitoring the temperature distribution induced in the underground and the effectiveness of the heat storage in this climatic context is not an easy task. For this purpose, different temperature evolution strategies are compared in this paper: Local temperature measurements, numerical simulations and geophysical surveys. These different approaches were compared during a single day of operation of the living lab. The results of this comparison allowed to underline the effectiveness of time-lapse 3D electric resistivity tomography as a non-invasive and cost-effective qualitative heat monitoring tool. This was obtained even in a test site with unfavorable thermo-hydrogeological conditions and high-level anthropic noise. Moreover, the present study demonstrated that, if properly calibrated with local temperature values, time-lapse 3D electric resistivity tomography also provides a quantitative estimation of the underground temperature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Subsurface Thermography and the Use of Temperature in Geosciences)
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