Magnetotelluric data analysis using 2D inversion: A case study from Al-Mubazzarah Geothermal Area (AMGA), Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates

Hakim Saibi, Sadieh Khosravi, Biruk Abera Cherkose, Maxim Smirnov, Yosef Kebede, Abdel Rahman Fowler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Geothermal manifestations (hot springs) emerge in the Al-Mubazzarah Geothermal Area (AMGA), Al-Ain city, Abu Dhabi Emirate, United Arab Emirates. This paper presents the application and results of a Magnetotelluric (MT) survey, which was carried out in 2017 at the AMGA geothermal field. The MT method was used to investigate the variations in the electrical conductivity beneath the AMGA. This study focuses on characterizing the patterns of subsurface electrical conductivity of the AMGA geothermal reservoir. Dimensionality analysis of the measured MT data indicate that 2D inversion is appropriate for the subsurface resistivity interpretation. The inversion results support a model consisting of three resistivity-defined layers; from top to bottom they are: (1) a shallow layer with resistivity ranging from 10 to 20 Ωm, representing recent alluvial and windblown deposits, (2) a second conductive layer with resistivities less than 10 Ωm, beneath the first layer. This layer is recognized as the Tertiary carbonate sequence in the region, (3) a deep, moderate to relatively high resistive zone, 10–30 Ωm beginning at 800 m depth and reaching 4 km depth in the northern part of the profile, representing Mesozoic basement rocks. The observed moderate to high resistivity zone (10–30 Ωm) in the 2D model may represent a region where the hot groundwaters originated (geothermal reservoir), with the hottest geothermal located at a depth greater than 4 km. The geothermal reservoir zone is also represented by a low to high density contrast and a low to moderate magnetic susceptibility, as indicated in the inverted potential field data models, and confirmed the existence of a north dipping major fault.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere07440
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021


  • 2D inversion
  • AMGA
  • Al-Ain
  • Geothermal
  • Low-enthalpy
  • Magnetotelluric
  • Potential field
  • United Arab Emirates

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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