A novel ELF radar for major oil deposits

Jamesina J. Simpson*, Allen Taflove

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


This letter proposes a novel extremely low frequency (ELF) radar for major oil deposits. Using our recently developed whole-Earth electromagnetic wave propagation model based upon the finite-difference time-domain method, we have determined that detection of the radial (vertical) component of the scattered H -field provides a sensitive means to detect oil fields that are located within several kilometers of the Earth's surface. As an example, we provide numerical simulations of ELF radar returns from a hypothetical Alaskan oil field excited by a 20-Hz pulse emitted from the former U.S. Navy site in Wisconsin. The proposed method would potentially provide means to rapidly and inexpensively conduct aerial surveys of thousands of square kilometers for significant oil deposits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36-39
Number of pages4
JournalIEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Aerial electromagnetic surveying
  • Earth
  • Electromagnetic sounding
  • Extremely low frequency (ELF)
  • Finite-difference time-domain (FDTD)
  • Oil field
  • SQUID magnetometer
  • U.S. Navy Wisconsin Transmitter Facility (WTF)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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