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Professional Paper 1761

Prepared in cooperation with the New Mexico Office of the State Engineer

Geophysical Interpretations of the Southern Española Basin, New Mexico, That Contribute to Understanding Its Hydrogeologic Framework

By V.J.S. Grauch, Jeffrey D. Phillips, Daniel J. Koning, Peggy S. Johnson, and Viki Bankey

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The southern Española basin consists of a westward- and northward-thickening wedge of rift fill, composed primarily of Santa Fe Group sediments, that serves as an important aquifer for the city of Santa Fe and surrounding areas. Detailed aeromagnetic surveys were flown to better understand ground-water resources in this aquifer. This report presents a synthesis of these data with gravity data and other constraints. The interpretations were accomplished using qualitative interpretation, state-of-art data analysis techniques, and two- and three-dimensional modeling. The results depict the presence of and depth to many geologic features that have hydrogeologic significance, including shallow faults, different types of igneous units, and basement rocks. The results are presented as map interpretations, geophysical profile models, and a digital surface that represents the base and thickness of Santa Fe Group sediments, as well as vector files of some volcanic features and faults.

First posted June 9, 2009

For additional information contact:

Team Chief Scientist, USGS Crustal Imaging and Characterization
Box 25046, Mail Stop 964
Denver, CO 80225

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Suggested citation:

Grauch, V.J.S., Phillips, J.D., Koning, D.J., Johnson, P.S., and Bankey, Viki, 2009, Geophysical interpretations of the southern Española Basin, New Mexico, that contribute to understanding its hydrogeologic framework: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1761, 88 p.


Executive Summary


Objectives, Approach, and Hydrogeologic Significance

Geologic Setting

Data Types and Descriptions

Methods of Data Analysis

Model Construction

Interpreted Elements of the Basin Floor

Interpreted Elements of Basin Fill

Interpreted Structure


Description of Digital Products


References Cited

Appendix 1. Well Data Used to Constrain Three-Dimensional Integrated Model and Gravity Inversion

Appendix 2. Well Data Used to Guide Three-Dimensional Integrated Model

Appendix 3. Magnetic Depth Estimation Methods Used in This Study

Appendix 4. Other Point-Located Data

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