Physical PropertiesΒΆ

In geophysics, materials are differentiated based on their physical properties. Physical properties characterize how materials respond to various physical inputs. For example, if I send sound waves through this material, how quickly does the signal propagate? How effective is this material at conducting electricity? Can I magnetize this material by applying a magnetic field? Sufficient understanding of material physical properties is ultimately paramount, as this information can be used to choose the optimum survey method for a given geophysical/geotechnical/geological problem.

As part of the GPG, we will focus on the following physical properties: density, magnetic susceptibility and permeability, seismic velocity, dielectric permittivity, electrical conductivity/resistivity and chargeability. For each physical property:

  • Relevant quantities are defined.
  • We explain how the physical property can be measured.
  • Physics associated with the physical property are explained.
  • A common range of values for rocks and materials is provided.
  • Factors impacting the physical property are explained.