Airborne geophysical methods have a great potential to explore the surface and subsurface of the earth down to some hundred meters depth. This information is essential for planning purposes for manifold geoscientific, economic or environmental questions, like, e.g., utilization and protection of freshwater resources, land utilization or industrial planning. These data integrated into a three-dimensional geographic information system provide a perfect tool for spatial planning. Beside the geologic or geophysical basic information also changes of surface and subsurface data in time and space may be documented by repeated surveys. The Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR) operates a helicopter which can be equipped with the following BGR-own and external geophysical systems ( Figure 1 ): frequency-domain electromagnetics, magnetics, gamma-ray spectroscopy, gravimetry, stepped-frequency and pulse radar. In addition, the helicopter can be used for airborne remote sensing (Laser scanning (LIDAR), aerial photography and infrared thermal imaging). Overall, the BGR helicopter with its performance and features is at least in Western Europe a unique measurement and research platform that can be used to investigate a variety of geo-scientific issues.


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