Resistivity logging

Resistivity logging is a method of characterizing the rock or sediment in a borehole by measuring its electrical resistivity. Resistivity is a fundamental material property which represents how strongly a material opposes the flow of electric current. In these logs, resistivity is measured using 4 electrical probes to eliminate the resistance of the contact leads. The log must run in holes containing electrically conductive mud or water.

Resistivity logging is sometimes used in mineral exploration and water-well drilling, but most commonly for formation evaluation in oil- and gas-well drilling. Most rock materials are essentially insulators, while their enclosed fluids are conductors. Hydrocarbon fluids are an exception, because they are almost infinitely resistive. When a formation is porous and contains salty water, the overall resistivity will be low. When the formation contains hydrocarbon, or contains very low porosity, its resistivity will be high. High resistivity values may indicate a hydrocarbon bearing formation.

Use in mineral exploration

Resistivity logs are also used in mineral exploration, especially exploration for iron and potassium.

ee also

* Archie's law


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