Use of Vertical Electric Resistivity Sounding for Monitoring of “Soil Space” as Ecosystem Service

Lead Author Evgeny, Abakumov
Institution Contact Department of Applied Ecology, Faculty of Biology, Saint-Petersburg State University, 199034, 16-line Vasilyevskiy Island, 29, Saint-Petersburg
Co-Authors Ivan Alexeev, Pomor Master Programm, Saint-Petersburg State University
Theme Theme 1: Vulnerability of Arctic Environments
Session Name 1.6 Strategies for ecosystem services and sustainable environmental management of soils and contaminated areas in the Arctic
Presentation Type Poster
Abstract text Soils underlain by permafrost are widely distributed in cold environments (Arctic and Antarctic). Permafrost affects the soil genesis and morphology, it also regulates the main chemical and physical processes and determines the structure of the soil cover. Moreover, permafrost regulates the mechanical stability of the soil cover, while the soil is the spatial basis for human activity. Active layer thickness and the depth of the permafrost table are the basic features of soil cover of polar regions and can be assessed by different direct or indirect methods. The classic method is to dig the soil profile or to drill the soil mass with the aim of fixing the permafrost table morphologically. It is also possible to push a sharpened steel bar into the ground until the frozen ground is encountered. Nowadays, direct-current resistivity methods have been used for the identification of permafrost depth and soil profile heterogeneity. Geophysical methods have many advantages and have been widely used for permafrost identification. Vertical electric resistivity is a quantitative method, which allows to make quick measurements of ER along the different soil profiles and the permafrost layer. The one-dimensional model was used for mapping of the permafrost depth in relatively homogenous conditions, whereas the two-dimensional approach was proposed for plots with a high degree of heterogeneity. Examples of VERS application for monitoring of permafrost table depth will be discussed in presentation in details.