Abstract

This paper reports the results of some recent geophysical experiments carried out in the Arctic with a variety of methods. In the Beaufort Sea, seismic refraction profiles obtained with both source and receivers on the seabottom indicate the presence of discontinuous near-bottom high-velocity (4200 m/s) material interpreted to be presently aggrading permafrost. Spring-time resistivity soundings taken through the ice in Kugmallit Bay, Beaufort Sea, show the top of permafrost at about 50 m below the bottom. Even for 5-km spreads, the base of permafrost was not observed.Off the southeast coast of Melville Island, refraction seismic profiles shot on the seabottom and resistivity soundings made through summer ice yielded data which correlate with known sub-bottom geology, but which gave no clear indication of either presence or absence of permafrost.Seismic and resistivity measurements made at a number of control sites in the Arctic Islands yielded typical velocities of 3500 m/s and resistivities of 1 × 106 ohm-m for ice-saturated sands. Some correlation was observed between seismic velocity and moisture contents in the range from 10% to 40%.Seismic and resistivity results in IOL Lake at the Involuted Hill test site, Tuktoyaktuk Peninsula, suggest the absence of permafrost under some parts of the lake bottom. On the hill itself, seismic up-hole shooting and VLF resistivity profiling give interpretations of ice distribution which correlate well with drill control. Gamma-gamma logs taken in some of the drill holes correlate well with ice content logged during drilling.

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