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Exploration Technique: SqueeSAR

Exploration Technique Information
Exploration Group: Remote Sensing Techniques
Exploration Sub Group: Active Sensors
Parent Exploration Technique: Radar
Information Provided by Technique
Stratigraphic/Structural: Detect fault and ground movement
Hydrological: Can give indications about subsurface geothermal fluid flow
SqueeSAR is a remote sensing technique that uses radar signals from a satellite to accurately measure ground displacement. SqueeSAR is a newer, improved, and more accurate analysis algorithm compared to the PSInSAR method.
Other definitions:Wikipedia Reegle

SqueeSAR is an improved algorithm for analyzing Synthetic-Aperture Radar (SAR) data collected via satellite. SqueeSAR is an improvement of the PSInSAR method. The SqueeSAR method not only identifies Permanent Scatterers (PS), it also identifies Distributed Scatterers (DS). DS’s are features on the surface which extend over larger areas such as fallow fields or bare earth. By identifying both PS and DS points the SqueeSAR method can recognize a significantly larger set of radar targets for a given area compared to the PSInSAR method. Using the SqueeSAR method is a great improvement over PSInSAR especially in rural areas where PS targets are limited.[1]
Use in Geothermal Exploration
SqueeSAR is useful for monitoring and precisely measuring the movement of a geothermal area over time. Changes in the underground water levels, pressures, and temperatures due to geothermal utilization can lead to changes on the surface. Subsidence or uplift of a geothermal area before and after utilization can be monitored and for geothermal areas located in fault zones lateral movement along fault lines in the area can be monitored. Using the SqueeSAR method ground movement and movement rates can be calculated with millimeter accuracy.[1] SqueeSAR methods are advantageous compared to PSInSAR methods because they are more accurate and well suited for rural areas where the majority of geothermal areas exist. Another advantage of SqueeSAR is the potential for deriving useful information about the subsurface. One example is, if clusters of measurement points show sharp changes in displacement rates it could indicate sub-surface structural controls on geothermal fluid movement and distinct boundaries between uplift areas.[1]
Related Techniques

Best Practices
SqueeSAR is a useful technique for monitoring the effects of fluid injection and extraction on surface deformation at geothermal areas. This method can also be used for detection of active faults in a geothermal area. SqueeSAR is an accurate and cost-effective method. It is a useful method in agricultural areas, where conventional methods fail such as in Imperial Valley.[2] SqueeSAR can be applied to geothermal exploration and the management of producing fields.[1]
Potential Pitfalls
Time measurements are limited to the intervals in which the satellites orbit.[3]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Giacomo Falorni,Jessica Morgan,Mariana Eneva. 2011. Advanced InSAR Techniques for Geothermal Exploration and Production. Geothermal Resources Council Transactions. 35(N/A):1661-1666., Giacomo Falorni,Jessica Morgan,Mariana Eneva. 2011. Advanced InSAR Techniques for Geothermal Exploration and Production. Geothermal Resources Council Transactions. (!) .
  2. Mariana Eneva. Surface Deformation from Satellite Data and Geothermal Assessment, Exploration and Mitigation in Imperial Valley [Internet]. 2012. N/A. N/A. [cited 2013/09/17]. Available from: http://www.energy.ca.gov/research/notices/2012-02-29_workshop/presentations/Geothermal/Eneva-Imageair_Inc_Presentation.pdf
  3. Parviz Tarikhi. Synthetic Aperture Radar Persistent Scatterer Interferometry (PSInSAR [Internet]. 2010. [cited 2013/09/20]. Available from: http://parviztarikhi.files.wordpress.com/2010/05/3psinsar-i-parviz_tarikhi.pdf

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