Tomography is one of the many popular geo-physical scientific methods of study. Specifically, tomography is used to study the sub-structures of the earth. Outside of geo-physical sience, tomography is used for taking x-ray images of the human or animal body. In hospitals, tomography is used in conjunction with CAT (computerized axial tomography) and CT (computerized tomography) scans. But whether tomography is used to find and examine structures beneath the earth’s surface, or to take a non-surgical peek inside the human body to look for problems (such as a perforated organ or abnormal cell growth), the result is two-dimensional or three-dimensional images that show the details as a map, or as layers. Scientists can then study these images for use in drawing maps and planning drilling and excavations.

Two-dimensional tomography, or simply 2D tomography, is a form of earth study that has been around for a long time, and while the devices and applications used to record and decipher the resulting data and images may continually be upgraded as more technological advances are made, the basics of tomography remain the same: with the use of electrodes that are positioned or dropped into special narrow drilled holes known as boreholes, scientists can take advantage of the measurement of electrical resistance to detect underground structures. Scientists use tomography to find underground wells that contain water or even oil, to detect shifts in the earth’s tectonic plates, or to simply find and confirm earthquakes, underground volcanic activity, or other naturally occurring elements and situations.

If you’re wondering about the effectiveness and efficiency of down whole tomography, then you’ll be assured by the many case studies that have determined that when deployed correctly, 2D tomography and other types of 2D resistivity imaging have resulted in detailed pictures and graphs that are both accurate and easy to read. Oklahoma State University, for instance, was able to successfully define and located hydro-carbon with the use of 2D tomography – and subsequent drilling of the area confirmed the accuracy of the maps. Other studies have found that by using multiple bores and careful 2D tomography studies, the use of brine solution in conjunction with the boreholes resulted in even clearer images.