In contrast to other prospective methods, the method of spontaneous Potential uses the field's natural electric field, so it does not require any emission circuit. This geophysical technique is based on the occurrence of certain heterogeneities conductive subsoil, which are polarized. Becoming electric batteries, producing electric currents.

In this way our geophysical services take advantage of certain qualities of this method:

  • The spontaneous polarization producing bodies are good conductors, generally with electrical continuity inside them
  • Anomalies of spontaneous polarization are almost always negative in the vicinity of the upper extremity of the body
  • The value of the total potential difference observed varies between hundreds of mV to 0.5V
  • The body must lie, at least in part in the active oxidation zone
  • The spontaneous potential is relatively stable over time
Dam auscultation
Geothermal Field Study
Resistivity equipment

In addition to the spontaneous polarization, the presence of other natural potentials can be observed on the ground:

  • Dissemination Potentials
  • Potentials of filtration
  • Variable polarization over time

This method consists of directly determining the potential difference of a series of stations with respect to a fixed reference point. The stations are arranged at equal intervals trying to cover the entire study area.

When the extension to be measured is large, several base stations are located, which are related to each other by means of careful and repeated observations. Locating these bases away from areas of industrial parasites of small amplitude and sudden topographic accidents. The earth sockets used consist of impassable electrodes of copper sulphate solution

The results of the Spontaneous Potential measurements are represented as equipotential maps. And the analysis of the map leads to the location of the bodies producing spontaneous polarization.

Isopotential map

Applications of the spontaneous potential method

Within the geophysical techniques, the spontaneous potential is used in mining for the detection of conducting mineral bodies, such as sulfur deposits.
The property of determining the direction of movement of water under the subsoil, is really useful for hydrogeology. And as a system of detection of leakage in reservoirs, in geotechnical projects.
In geothermal, this quality of detection of movements of waters and vapors, is used in geothermal zones for the location of faults and fractures.


Geoelectric recognition with PE for a dam

Spontaneous potential for dam

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