Active Electrode Cables

AGI’s active dual-mode electrode cables (U.S. Patent 6,404,203) are used for ultra-sensitive automatic induced polarization (IP) measurements using nonpolarizable electrodes. The dual-mode electrodes have a receiver channel that is isolated from the transmitting stainless steel electrode.

Active Electrode Use Case

There are two main applications for dual-mode electrode cables: mapping of dense nonaqueous phase liquid (DNAPL) spill in the ground, and mineral exploration.

The active electrode cables are ideal for locating and scanning in environmental engineering, like exploration for dense nonaqueous phase liquid (DNAPL) chlorinated solvents. DNAPLs are slightly more dense than water and are extremely carcinogenic. Examples include:

  • Methylene chloride, used in processing chemicals and pharmaceuticals.

  • Perchloroethylene, used in dry cleaning and metal surface cleaning.

  • Trichlorethylene, used in refrigeration and HVAC systems.

If these DNAPLs contaminate the groundwater or drinking water, they can result in major health issues and environmental hazards that can eventually turn into Superfund sites. Locating areas where these chlorinated solvents are dense can help prevent these issues. Our imaging systems are used once these Superfund sites have already been established as a solution for reducing the costs associated with the cleanup. It is one of many supportive services needed in the environmental protection industry.

Disseminated copper ores, or porphyry copper, is best detected and mapped by the use of induced polarization (IP) imaging. By using dual-mode cables, automatic IP imaging surveys can easily be performed even when using non-polarizable electrodes. Each electrode station is then occupied by a stainless steel electrode stake and a non-polarizable electrode. The two electrodes are separated by a short distance (0.5-1 meter) and perpendicular to the survey line direction.

When the electrode station is acting as a transmitting electrode the current is guided through the stainless steel electrode—and when the electrode station is acting as a potential electrode the voltage is measured through the non-polarizable electrode. The switching between stainless steel electrode and non-polarizable electrode is seamless and completely automatic.

Product Features

  • Thick transmitter wires.

  • Receiver wires are electrically shielded from the transmitter for a noise-free measurement.

  • Internal kevlar-strength member.

  • Distributed switching instead of a centralized switching box allows for thicker wires which will output more current.

  • Transmits through the stainless steel stakes and receives through the non-polarizable electrodes for more sensitive measurements, especially during induced polarization (IP) surveys.

  • Dual-mode electrodes with a patented separate receiving channel.

  • Water-resistant.

Benefits Of Distributed Electrode Switching

  • Connect the instrument anywhere along the electrode cable

  • No Switch Box needed

  • Easier to perform roll-along survey without a switch box

  • More depth penetration due to much less saw-tooth overlap pattern

  • Thick transmitter conductors

  • Shielded receiver conductors

  • Two modes of operation:

    • Normal mode: collect data using only stainless steel electrodes

    • Dual mode: transmit on stainless steel electrodes and measure on separate non-polarizable electrodes