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Radar imaging of winter seismic survey activity in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 July 2008

Benjamin M. Jones
Alaska Science Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Anchorage, Alaska, USA
Russell Rykhus
SAIC, Contractor for Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS), U.S. Geological Survey, Sioux Falls, SD, USA
Zhong Lu
U.S. Geological Survey, Vancouver, Washington, USA
Christopher D. Arp
Alaska Science Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Anchorage, Alaska, USA
David J. Selkowitz
Alaska Science Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Anchorage, Alaska, USA


During the spring of 2006, Radarsat-1 synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery was acquired on a continual basis for the Teshekpuk Lake Special Area (TLSA), in the northeast portion of the National Petroleum Reserve, Alaska (NPR-A) in order to monitor lake ice melting processes. During data processing, it was discovered that the Radarsat-1 imagery detected features associated with winter seismic survey activity. Focused analysis of the image time series revealed various aspects of the exploration process such as the grid profile associated with the seismic line surveys as well as trails and campsites associated with the mobile survey crews. Due to the high temporal resolution of the dataset it was possible to track the progress of activities over a one month period. Spaceborne SAR imagery can provide information on the location of winter seismic activity and could be used as a monitoring tool for land and resource managers as increased petroleum-based activity occurs in the TLSA and NPR-A.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2008

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