Squid: An innovative new ground-coupled electric seismic source for seismic monitoring

Donald C. Lawton, Malcolm B. Bertram, Trent Hunter, Greg Maidment, Brendan Kolkman-Quinn

A new seismic source has been tested at the Containment and Monitoring Institute Field Research Station (CaMI.FRS) in Newell County, Alberta. The ‘Squid’ source is a patent pending surface source leveraging the dynamics of an atmospheric plasma discharge in a water filled reactor. It has been developed by 3P Technologies Inc in Calgary, Alberta. At CaMI.FRS the source was coupled to the ground by bolting it to a thick steel plate at the top of a helical pile that had been screwed into the ground to a depth of 24.7 m.The Squid source triggered a Geode seismic system that recorded vertical seismic profile data from 24 3-component geophones in an observation well over a depth range from 191 m to 306 m below surface, with a geophone interval of 5 m. Source offset from the VSP well was 62 m. Good quality data were acquired with a single shot (3.6 kJ energy). The SNR improved significantly after a 50-shot stack. Processed data exhibit a frequency band from 10 to 180 Hz and compared favourably with VSP data collected in the same well with an Envirovibe source located beside the Squid pedestal. Comparison of the travel times of the downward propagating wavefield for both sources indicate that the Squid source is coupling to the subsurface bedrock through the base of the pedestal.