Self-potential response to periodic pumping test: a numerical study

Abstract : We numerically model self-potential responses associated with periodic pumping test experiments by sequential calculation of the hydraulic response and the coupled electrical potential. We assume the pumping test experiments with a fully saturated confined aquifer. Application of different excitation functions leads to quasi-linear trends in electrical records whose direction and intensity depend on the form of the excitation function. The hydraulic response is phase shifted compared to the excitation function; the phase shift increases quasi-linearly with the distance from the pumping well. For the electrical signals, we investigated separately the cases of conducting and insulating casings of the pumping well. For the conducting casing the electrical signals are larger in magnitude than that for the insulating casing; they reproduce the drawdown signals in the pumping well at any distance from the well and exhibit any phase shift with the increased distance. For the insulating casing, the electrical signals are phase shifted and their shape depends on the distance from the pumping well. Three characteristic regimes were found for the phase shift, φ, with the increased distance and for various hydraulic diffusivity values. At small distances φ increases quasi-linearly; at intermediate distances φ attends the value of π/2 and stay about this value (for relatively small diffusivity values); and at large distances φ attends the value of π and, stay about this value at larger distances. This behaviour of the electrical signals can be explained by two electrical sources of reverse polarity. They are (i) linear, time independent, and located at the pumping interval of the well; and (ii) volumetric, time dependent, with maximum value located in the aquifer at the distance corresponding to maximum variation of the hydraulic head magnitude with time. We also model the variation of the amplitude and phase of the hydraulic and electrical signals with increased excitation function period, and we show the characteristic periods corresponding to transition of the periodic pumping test regime to the classical pumping test regime, when the excitation function is considered as the step-function. This transition depends on the distance from the pumping well and the hydraulic diffusivity value of aquifer. Finally, with this modelling of saturated flow we reproduced in sufficient details the field data previously obtained by Maineult et al.
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Geophysical Journal International, Oxford University Press (OUP), 2017, 210 (3), pp.1901-1908. 〈10.1093/gji/ggx278〉
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Pavel Konosavsky, Alexis Maineult, Mikhail Narbut, Konstantin Titov. Self-potential response to periodic pumping test: a numerical study. Geophysical Journal International, Oxford University Press (OUP), 2017, 210 (3), pp.1901-1908. 〈10.1093/gji/ggx278〉. 〈hal-01579182〉

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