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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Bulletin


Volume: 57 (1973)

Issue: 4. (April)

First Page: 779

Last Page: 779

Title: Practical Application of Remote Sensing to Petroleum and Mineral Exploration: ABSTRACT

Author(s): Norman H. Foster

Article Type: Meeting abstract


The symposium papers concern many aspects of the application of remote sensing to natural resource exploration. Remote sensing is best discussed in the context of the electromagnetic spectrum. Any device which senses a part of the spectrum from a remote position may be classified as a remote sensor. Visible light is the most familiar part of the spectrum, and our eyes and a camera with its film are remote sensors. In the shorter wavelengths, ultraviolet light has been useful in limestone-dolomite studies. X-ray diffraction patterns long have been used in mineral identification. In exploration for radioactive minerals, sensing parts of the gamma-ray spectrum with airborne or ground scintillometers is a common technique. On the longer wavelength side of the spectrum, near a d far infrared are adjacent to visible light. Near or photographic infrared, when taken with a low sun angle, has been very useful in mapping faults and other features which are topographically expressed. Far, or thermal, infrared is also useful in mapping faults. Because water has a tendency to be more abundant in fault zones, they commonly are expressed as slight temperature lows due to the cooling effect of evaporation.

Side-looking-radar imagery also is very useful in fault delineation and for general mapping purposes, particularly in areas where cloudiness is a problem in conventional aerial photography. Side-scan sonar is a technique used to obtain underwater imagery, and should prove useful in bathymetric studies of shelf areas.

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Copyright 1997 American Association of Petroleum Geologists