To interpret the geophysical field data, it is necessary to know the signature of different kinds of bacteria and to assess the sensitivity of the geophysical methods for these specific applications. This application is quite new for the geophysical Induced Polarization (IP) measurement technique, so extensive laboratory work to establish fundamental links between the presence of microbes and IP signals is required.

We have begun the first experiment with the standard lab organism Escherichia coli (E. coli) strain DSM1116, which has been isolated from soil in the environment. The first results showed that signals from IP are changing as the bacteria grew in sand. This experiment is still ongoing with a control measurement. Afterwards, the experiments were repeated with natural sand communities (lab growing).

The first results are presented at the 5th IP Workshop Newark/USA (Oct. 2018).