Geophysical Prospecting

Academic year
Subject Area
Área Científica do Menor
Language of Instruction
Mode of Delivery
ECTS Credits
1st Cycle Studies

Recommended Prerequisites

Knowledge in the field of Earth Sciences and general Physics.

Teaching Methods

Theoretical lectures with detailed exposition of the concepts and principles pertaining to geophysical methods and of their applications. Theoretical-practical and laboratorial courses in which students are introduced to the resolution of exercises concerning practical applications (with guidance). Field work in which students undertake data acquisition with some geophysical methods. Personal work involving the resolution of exercises on an autonomous base. Transversal to the different types of courses/work is the introduction of the student to the questions concerning the methodologies underlying geophysical methods, their potentialities and limitations, their use with a critical approach, and the need to adapt to each specific situation.

Learning Outcomes

To provide the fundamental concepts and principles on the main methods in exploration geophysics, as well as insight on their applications, their potentialities and limitations. To gain knowledge on essential processing and interpretation of data, as well as the acquisition concerning some fundamental methods.

Work Placement(s)



Geophysical methods in prospecting. Parameters measured. Electrical methods. Resistivity methods with continuous or low frequency current. Electrical conduction in a continuous medium. Electrical soundings. Resistivity profiling. Other electrical methods. Spontaneous polarization. Induced polarization; time domain and frequency domain. Electromagnetic methods. Electromagnetic induction. Vlf. Transmiter-receiver methods. Seismic methods. Elasticity theory essential concepts. Seismic waves propagation. Refraction seismics. Gravity and Magnetic methods – applications and particular points of these methods within the framework of geophysical prospecting. For the different methods: physical principles, equipments, acquisition, data processing and interpretation; applications.


Kearey, P., Brooks, M., Hill, I. (2009) – Geofísica de Exploração. Oficina de Textos.

Parasnis, D.S. (1997) – Principles of Applied Geophysics. Chapman and Hall, London.

Telford, W.M., Geldart, L.P. e Sheriff, R.E. (1990) – Applied Geophysics, 2nd ed. Cambridge University Press.

Dobrin, M.B. (1994) – Introduction to Geophysical Prospecting. McGraw-Hill, London.

Orellana, E. (1982) – Prospeccion Geoelectrica en corriente continua. Paraninfo, Madrid.