ISGS Active in Near-Surface Geophysics Focus Group

Geophysics group with ISGS staff member Yev Kontar second from left and staff member Ahmed Ismail far right.The American Geophysical Union (AGU) Near-Surface Geophysics Focus Group (NSGFG) supports the development and application of geophysical methods to study the near-surface region (approximately the top 100 m). First organized in 2006, the focus group's primary objective is to build an AGU community where researchers involved with near-surface geophysical methods, regardless of the specific application, can discuss and advance the fundamental science of geophysical imaging (data acquisition, inversion, and interpretation). During AGU's December 15-19, 2008, fall meeting in San Francisco, Illinois State Geological Survey geophysicists Yevgeniy Kontar and Ahmed Ismail met with several key NSGFG representatives to discuss joint research projects targeting Illinois subsurface environments and other scientific studies of the "critical zone," which supports human infrastructure, provides water and mineral resources, is the disposal zone for much of the population's waste, represents a key component of many hazards assessments, and is the interface between land and atmosphere for many of the biogeochemical cycles that sustain life. Using near-surface geophysics to study the complex interactions between processes in hydrogeology, geochemistry, and geobiology and possible sharing equipment and experience was discussed. During the AGU fall meeting, the focus group interacted closely with AGU scientific sessions IN51C, OS51D, and OS54B, which were organized and conducted by ISGS.