Abstract

The AfricaArray International Geophysics Field School is a three-week program designed to introduce the complete workflow of a geophysical project. In the first week, participants design a geophysical survey of relevance to a mine, water-resource investigation, or an archaeology study. The design of the course includes considerations of cost and safety and is presented in a competitive manner. The weeklong data-collection phase ensures that participants are familiar with operation of all equipment, including gravity, magnetics, DGPS, resistivity, EM31, EM34, and reflection and refraction seismology. Data are processed in the evening, and safety issues are reviewed the following morning. The final week is spent on campus, interpreting and integrating data to form a coherent model of the subsurface. The participants are selected from three cohorts: University of Witwatersrand geophysics students, SEG Foundation and UNESCO-sponsored African participants, and U. S.-sponsored undergraduates attending as part of a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU). Instructors include graduate students, resulting in a two-tier training system, as they learn about lecturing, logistics, and field preparation for weeks in advance. The field school has developed a wide-ranging network of geophysical talent throughout Africa, which is starting to seed new field schools.

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