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Title: Optimal joule heating of the subsurface

A method for simultaneously heating the subsurface and imaging the effects of the heating is disclosed. This method combines the use of tomographic imaging (electrical resistance tomography or ERT) to image electrical resistivity distribution underground, with joule heating by electrical currents injected in the ground. A potential distribution is established on a series of buried electrodes resulting in energy deposition underground which is a function of the resistivity and injection current density. Measurement of the voltages and currents also permits a tomographic reconstruction of the resistivity distribution. Using this tomographic information, the current injection pattern on the driving electrodes can be adjusted to change the current density distribution and thus optimize the heating. As the heating changes conditions, the applied current pattern can be repeatedly adjusted (based on updated resistivity tomographs) to affect real time control of the heating.
Inventors:
;
Issue Date:
OSTI Identifier:
7275293
Assignee:
Dept. of Energy, Washington, DC (United States) PTO; EDB-94-111316
Patent Number(s):
US 5325918; A
Application Number:
PPN: US 8-100800
Contract Number:
W-7405-ENG-48
Resource Relation:
Patent File Date: 2 Aug 1993
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
42 ENGINEERING; UNDERGROUND SPACE; JOULE HEATING; CONTROL SYSTEMS; ELECTRIC CONDUCTIVITY; IMAGES; TOMOGRAPHY; UNDERGROUND; DIAGNOSTIC TECHNIQUES; ELECTRIC HEATING; ELECTRICAL PROPERTIES; HEATING; LEVELS; PHYSICAL PROPERTIES; PLASMA HEATING; RESISTANCE HEATING; SPACE; 422000* - Engineering- Mining & Underground Engineering- (1980-)