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Multi-offset Ground-penetrating Radar Imaging of a Lab-scale Infiltration Test : Volume 8, Issue 6 (15/11/2011)

By Mangel, A. R.

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Book Id: WPLBN0004012761
Format Type: PDF Article :
File Size: Pages 29
Reproduction Date: 2015

Title: Multi-offset Ground-penetrating Radar Imaging of a Lab-scale Infiltration Test : Volume 8, Issue 6 (15/11/2011)  
Author: Mangel, A. R.
Volume: Vol. 8, Issue 6
Language: English
Subject: Science, Hydrology, Earth
Collections: Periodicals: Journal and Magazine Collection (Contemporary), Copernicus GmbH
Publication Date:
Publisher: Copernicus Gmbh, Göttingen, Germany
Member Page: Copernicus Publications


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Ryan, J. C., Tarbutton, J. A., Mangel, A. R., & J. Moyse, S. M. (2011). Multi-offset Ground-penetrating Radar Imaging of a Lab-scale Infiltration Test : Volume 8, Issue 6 (15/11/2011). Retrieved from

Description: Environmental Engineering and Earth Sciences, Clemson University, 340 Brackett Hall, Clemson, SC 29634, USA. A lab scale infiltration experiment was conducted to evaluate the use of transient multi-offset ground-penetrating radar (GPR) data for characterizing dynamic hydrologic events in the vadose zone. A unique GPR data acquisition setup allowed sets of 21 traces at different offsets to be recorded every 30 s during a 3 h infiltration experiment. The result is a rich GPR data cube that can be viewed as multi-offset gathers at discrete moments in time or as common offset images that track changes in the GPR arrivals over the course of the experiment. These data allows us to continuously resolve the depth to soil boundaries while simultaneously tracking changes in wave velocity, which are strongly associated with soil water content variations. During the experiment the average volumetric water content estimated in the tank ranged between 10–30% with discrepancies between the GPR results, moisture probe data, and 1-D numerical modeling on the order of 3–5% (vol vol−1), though the patterns of the estimated water content over time were consistent for both wetting and drying cycles. Relative errors in the estimated depth to a soil boundary located 60 cm from the surface of the tank were typically on the order of 2% over the course of the experiment. During the period when a wetting front migrated downward through the tank, however, errors in the estimated depth of this boundary were as high as 25%, primarily as a result of wave interference between arrivals associated with the wetting front and soil boundary. Given that our analysis assumed one-dimensional, vertical infiltration, this high error could also suggest that more exhaustive GPR data and comprehensive analysis methods are needed to accurately image non-uniform flow produced during periods of intense infiltration. Regardless, we were able to track the movement of the wetting front through the tank and found a reasonably good correlation with in-situ water content measurements. We conclude that transient multi-offset GPR data are capable of quantitatively monitoring dynamic soil hydrologic processes.

Multi-offset ground-penetrating radar imaging of a lab-scale infiltration test

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