Ph.D. Student Sara McPeak Completes First Round of Field Work in Northwest Territories

Friday, July 28, 2017

Sara McPeak placing the Tromino in the ground

Sara McPeak placing the Tromino in the ground 

 

From July 11-23, 2017 Ph.D. student Sara McPeak and M.Sc. student Skyler Mallozzi (field assistant) conducted field work at the Kennady Diamonds Kelvin Camp (approximately 280 km northeast of Yellowknife). Both Sara and Skyler are working under the supervision of Professor Claire Samson.

Sara’s project is a component of the “Slave Province Diamond Exploration Development Program” led by the Northwest Territories Geological Survey. The goal is to determine if passive seismics can be used to map the overburden thickness in a permafrost-rich environment in support of diamond exploration in the Great Slave Province. The instrument used for the survey is a Tromino, a broad-band 3-component seismograph. To collect data, the Tromino is firmly planted in the ground for a 30-minute period. If there is a large impedance contrast between the overburden and the bedrock, the fundamental frequency can be estimated using the maximum horizontal-to-vertical spectral ratio of the ambient noise. The fundamental frequency is used to calculate the fundamental period, which is then used to estimate the thickness of the overburden.

Future plans for this project are to collect data using various geophysical methods to compare the results with passive seismics and to determine the relative merits and weaknesses of each technique.

 

Sara McPeak scouting recording sites in the tundra 

Sara McPeak scouting recording sites in the tundra