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Bedrock architecture, soil texture, and hyporheic zone characterization combining electrical resistivity and induced polariza...

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Journal of Applied Geophysics
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The shallow (<15 m depth) subsurface environment of a short reach along a bedrock stream was investigated with electrical resistivity and induced polarization (IP) to map details of bedrock and soil sediments. The bedrock is mostly comprised of limestone, and is generally resistive compared to the overlying soil. The soil-bedrock interface was determined through a trial and error approach using a sharp boundary feature in the inversion model. The inferred bedrock surface determined from the inversions exhibited undulating patterns with troughs and ridges. A near continuous trough ran alongside the stream within the floodplain, and is suggestive of a paleochannel among other interpretations of this feature. The structure of the electrical resistivity above the bedrock showed small-scale elongated features. The chargeability from the IP method showed larger scale features. High values of chargeability were associated with the sediments in the floodplain, and low values were associated with bedrock, stream, and soil on the elevated banks above the stream. If the chargeability is associated with membrane polarization characteristic of clayey soils, then IP seems to highlight the mere existence of clay, while the resistivity may be more discernable of the relative proportion of clay. Vegetation differences may also explain the chargeability distribution, where parts of the survey with high chargeability had dense pine with no understory making the soils more organically rich.