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Subsurface Geophysical Characterization of the Crystalline Canadian Shield in Northeastern Alberta: Implications for Geothermal Development Open Access


Other title
Geothermal energy
Geophysical characterization
Well logging
Seismic reflection profile
Canadian Shield
Vertical seismic profile
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Chan, Judith S.
Supervisor and department
Schmitt, Douglas (Physics)
Examining committee member and department
Chacko, Tom (Earth and Atmospheric Sciences)
Grant, Darren (Physics)
Potter, David (Physics)
Schmitt, Douglas (Physics)
Department of Physics
Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Science
Degree level
In northern Alberta, existing heat flow and geothermal gradient studies suggest that using geothermal heat in oil sands processing would require deep drilling of the crystalline Canadian Shield. Using a 2.36 km deep borehole located near Fort McMurray, the goal of this study is to investigate the presence of any geological features that could act as fluid pathways for the development of an engineered geothermal system in the basement rocks. This is done by integrating the results from a comprehensive suite of geophysical borehole logs, seismic reflection surveys, zero-offset and walk-away vertical seismic profiles. The final results provide useful information on the in-situ physical properties of the rocks, depths to fracture zones and seismic reflectors, types of fractures, stress directions, and the acoustic responses of rock properties. Significant P-wave velocity anisotropy is also observed from the walk-away vertical seismic profile.
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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