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Mapping of Leachate Plume Through Resistivity and EM Measurements of Local Trees

As part of 2000-2001 OGW BG site characterization research through the USGS Toxic Substances Hydrology Program, resistivity and electromagnetic measurements of tree conductivity were made near the University of Connecticut landfill, Storrs, Connecticut.

The goal of initial research has been to determine if measurements of tree conductivity could be used to indirectly locate landfill leachate discharge points. Direct-current (DC) resistivity and electromagnetic (EM) methods are being used to measure the electrical conductivity of trees surrounding the University of Connecticut landfill. Based on prior research on the extent and location of a leachate plume with an electrical signature, trees with root systems in the plume and outside of the plume were identified. Resistivity soundings were conducted on sample trees, and the measurements taken at different locations were compared.

Field results suggested that alternative approaches might be needed to test the hypothesis. Continued research in FY02 will focus on the use of portable EM conductivity instruments to test trees surrounding the landfill.

View the online photo gallery from this project.

Support & Collaboration

This research was conducted through the USGS Toxic Substances Hydrology Program by John W. Lane, Jr. (USGS OGW Branch of Geophysics), Carole Johnson (USGS OGW Branch of Geophysics) and Don Vroblesky (USGS WRD Microbial Studies Section) with assistance from OGW BG staff.

For more information:

For more information on this project, please contact John W. Lane, Jr. (Chief, USGS OGW Branch of Geophysics) or Carole Johnson (Hydrologist, USGS OGW Branch of Geophysics), or call the Branch of Geophysics at (860)487-7402.

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