As part of the project "WeatherSeis" a seismic survey has been carried out to explore shallow subsurface structures at the location "Waldschadensstandort Konventwald" in the Black Forest near Freiburg, Germany in July 2014.
The site is being used for studies of the weathering zone by the GFZ Section 3.4 (Surface Geochemistry) and the Albert-Ludwigs-University of Freiburg (Hydrology). On the basis of geochemical parameters the zone of interest is analyzed for mineralogical aspects and mass transport mechanisms. Additionally core drilling has been carried out at two locations. The core sample extends from soil continuing through autochthonous weathered rock ("saprolite") into the unweathered bedrock. In order to develop alternative high-resolution methods to study the weathering zone (here the top 20 - 30 m) an active seismic survey consisting of three 2D profiles at different altitude levels was carried out. The generation of seismic waves was performed with an accelerated weight-drop. The chosen recording configuration allows different evaluation methods. Special focus is put on the structure, zoning and the physico-chemical properties of the weathering zone. Knowledge of position and composition of the weathering zone makes it possible to draw representative conclusions on hydrological, rheological, petrophysical and mineralogical control factors of weathering and water balance.
The multidisciplinary investigations at this location open up the possibility of integrated evaluation and the combination of results of geochemical and geophysical measurements. Moreover, there are already further geophysical campaigns planned. In the summer of 2015 new seismic as well as geoelectric measurements are already scheduled.

Principal Investigators

  • Manfred Stiller (GFZ Potsdam, Sec. 2.2)
  • Prof. Dr. Michael Weber (GFZ Potsdam, Sec. 2.2)
  • Prof. Dr. Friedhelm von Blanckenburg (GFZ Potsdam, Sec. 3.4)
  • David Uhlig (GFZ Potsdam, Sec. 3.4)

Experiment time frame

  • July 2014

Methods & equipment

  • Accelerated weight-drop
  • Multichannel System "Geode" by Geometrics
  • Reflection/Refraction Seismics, Tomography, Surface Wave Inversion




GFZ - Helmholtz Centre Potsdam - GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences