Remote Sensing For Geothermal Exploration Over Buffalo Valley, Nv

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Journal Article: Remote Sensing For Geothermal Exploration Over Buffalo Valley, Nv

Remote sensing is a useful tool for identifying the surface expression of geothermal systems based on characteristic mineral assemblages that result from hydrothermal alteration (Kratt et al., 2004; Vaughan et al., 2005). Buffalo Valley in Pershing and Lander Counties, Nevada, is an area of high potential for geothermal energy production (Shevenell et al., 2004). Geothermal heat is expressed by several hot springs with surface temperatures of up to 79°C (Olmsted et al., 1975). The hot springs and a chain of Quaternary cinder cones appear to be structurally controlled by a fault zone related to the Fish Creek Mountains range front fault (Olmsted et al., 1975; Wollenberg et al., 1975). The full extent of the geothermal system in Buffalo Valley is poorly understood. Remote sensing is used as an attempt to better constrain the system and explore for hidden geothermal systems in other parts of the valley. The MASTER airborne simulator acquired data over BuffaloValley and Jersey Valley in May 2006. MASTER simulates a combination of the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) instruments. MASTER data have 11 m spatial resolution and 50 channels ranging from the visible to thermal infrared (0.4 to 12.9 _m). The relatively high spatial and spectral resolution of the data allows for the identification of carbonate, sulfate, silica and clay minerals. Quartz- and clay-rich regions of Buffalo Valley were determined using methods that exploit differences in thermal infrared emissivity. MASTER visible and short-wave infrared data further define the mineralogy of areas with geothermal potential. The MASTER data show the active Buffalo Valley Hot Springs region consists mostly of carbonate deposits. Further from the hot springs, silica-rich deposits surround the carbonates. This paper presents initial mapping results of geothermal materials.

E. Littlefield and W. Calvin

Published Journal 
GRC, 2009

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E. Littlefield,W. Calvin. 2009. Remote Sensing For Geothermal Exploration Over Buffalo Valley, Nv. GRC. (!) .

Related Geothermal Exploration Activities
Activities (1)

Areas (1)
  1. Buffalo Valley Hot Springs Area
Regions (0)