Geologists and hydrogeologists are able to reference WATEX™ results in the field thanks to RTI's Groundwater Exploration Navigation System (GENS). Developed based on field experience, the iGens app for iPad gives scientists and explorers an opportunity to view their location on maps produced by The WATEX™ Process. From the Earth's surface, iGens can be used to pinpoint the location of groundwater and begin borehole drilling.Today, RTI's GENS technology is helping NGOs and local governments locate and tap new water resources in several African countries.
RTI's proprietary WATEX™ System prospects and explores sub-surface water, soils and geology. The system enables and supports effective hydrogeological investigations with optimal certainty and is the result of years of research and development.
BAMEX™ (Base Mineral Exploration) is a unique technology developed by RTI to addresses standard limitations of traditional mining exploration.
The HEXUB™ System (Hydrocarbon Exploration of Uplifted Basins) is the result of over 30 years of oil exploration experience. The technology combines radar and optical satellite imagery, traditional oil exploration data and an in-depth understanding of various disciplines including geology, structural geology, and geophysics.
The contribution of Radar Imaging Satellites (SAR). From 800 km, a new generation of radar satellites or SAR can map the surface of the sea over swaths of 150 km wide in few seconds, and track all the ships, platforms and drifted oil. Experiments have been carried out for the last 10 years all over the world, to assess qualitatively and quantitatively the potential of SAR for oil spill detection.
Alain Gachet is a mining engineer, Senior Oil Exploration Expert and geologist-geophysicist. He is an International Expert to the United Nations and served as a radar instructor with the DRM in Creil (2002), GDTA in Toulouse and SAC (Satellite Application Center), in Pretoria, South Africa. He was born in Madagascar in 1951 and currently lives and works in Tarascon, France.
After working in oil exploration for 20 years from 1977 to 1997, (ELF Aquitaine, AGIP, Shell, Exxon), Alain Gachet radically changed course and began using his scientific knowledge to address future water challenges facing humankind. Understanding that soil and water are the foundations of civilization, he began a journey to uncover drinking water sources lying deep underground.
Seeking to build a pragmatic field exploration technology to locate natural resources, Gachet began combining proven techniques including geology, geophysics, geo-morphology processing and interpretation of optical and radar satellite imagery, climatology, and archeology. For example, Gachet combined radar scans with traditional knowledge from Pygmies to discover mineralized geological structures leading to the discovery of Central Africa’s first gold and iron mines. Reading the antique legends of the Meroe Kingdom in Sudan led him to rediscover the gold mines of the black pharaos near the Nile.
While searching for Shell oil in 2002, Gachet used radar to detect gigantic water leaks in Muammar Gaddafi‘s “Great Man Made river” in the desert of Sirte, Libya. This leakage of several billion cubic meters of water (along a broken pipe 900 meters long) remained undetected until Gachet’s discovery. His identification of the leak would lead to the invention of the WATEX (Water Exploration) system, which he would continue developing for 2 years.
WATEX imagery processing eliminates all surface effects, similar in practice to how the Hubble telescope eliminates atmospheric effects, which allows Gachet to infer deep aquifers quickly.
February 2004: UNHCR Geneva was confronted with a wave of 250,000 refugees from Darfur in Chad. Trucking of drinking water costing millions of dollars a day and a risky and uncertain strategy in conflict zones. Called with urgency to find drinking water for refugees. Tested WATEX for first time and boreholes produced in Touloum and Iridimi camps.
March 2005: Used to supply drinking water for 20,000 people in eastern Chad following its discovery of new indications Camp Gaga. Drilling success rate improved from 33% to 89%.
June 2005: Alain Gachet invited to Washington by cartographer and White House advisor to Condoleezza Rice, the late Bill Woods. Met in eastern Chad in July 2004 to perform aquifers research. U.S. Department of State entrusted with a study of Darfur region’s aquifer potential in Sudan. 200, 000 km² upon validation of WATEX technology by USGS hydro geologists.
May 2006: Alain Gachet invited by USAID and USGS to present WATEX mapping results to UNICEF (in charge of drilling and 40 NGOs in Khartoum). Training before Darfur operations and drilling. Thousands of objectives defined by new maps. Camps near El Fasher , Nyala, and El Geneina with 2.5 million displaced people displaced befitting.
May 10, 2007: Alain Gachet invited to UNICEF seminar in El Fasher, capital of North Darfur province in Sudan with 50,000 displaced persons in area. UNICEF cancels seminar upon attack by 300 rebels. In turmoil, Gachet attends emergency meeting in Khartoum and debriefs drillers who used WATEX maps to drill 300 wells. Over 95% success rate since 2006 seminar (test benchmark expected to confirm effectiveness of Gachet’s process).
June 15, 2009: Invited by an American NGO, JAM, in the context of post-conflict reconstruction. Alain Gachet discovers water supplies for millions of people in the area of Lobito, Angola Catumbela. Locates large aquifer along coast buried under sea level in the sand. Guided by WATEX mapping and a backhoe, Gachet’s discovery brought fresh drinking water in middle of salt pans infested with cholera.
August 20, 2010: Selected by UNESCO to map groundwater resources in Iraq.
2013: Government of Kenya commissions mapping of northern Kenya groundwater resources. Using new maps to guide a battery drill financed by the Japanese Cooperation and under the auspices of UNESCO, Alain Gachet discovers several deep drinking water and renewable reserves in Lodwar basin (10 billion m3) and Lotikipi in Turkana (200 billion m3), the driest region of the country on the border with South Sudan, Uganda, and Ethiopia.
2014: Upon request of the Head of State of Togo, President of the Republic Mr. Faure Gnassingbé, Alain Gachet identifies water resources in Togo, north a potential 700 billion cubic meters of deep drinking water in the fragile and vulnerable Sahelian zone and south a renewable fresh water supply for coastal cities.
Since then, Alain Gachet is accessed directly by many governments and financial institutions that use his services.
RTI's proprietary WATEX System prospects and explores sub-surface water, soils and geology. The system enables and supports effective hydrogeological investigations with optimal certainty and is the result of years of research and development.
WATEX produces groundwater target maps designed to assist decision-makers, policy-makers and drillers initiate large scale water development and management projects. The maps provide regional views of water resources, identify shallow and deep-water aquifers and have the ability to increase drilling success rates to within 75% and 95%.
The system's trans-disciplinary and multi-technological design comprises a calculated mix of space-based remote-sensing, oil exploration technologies and conventional hydrogeological techniques. It has an image processing component that can detect groundwater moisture in depths of 40 meters or more. WATEX also enables accurate modeling of aquifers and fractures in shallow depths (0-100 meters) and maps deep aquifers (100 meters to 4,000 meters) with the integration of petroleum industry data.
RTI does not require pre-existing data to implement the WATEX System. In fact, most regions where RTI used the technology had no existing geologic or hydrogeological maps.
Operational, tested and field-proven
WATEX has been recognized by UNESCO, US Geological Survey, the US Congress, and the European Union as a unique method for mapping and identifying groundwater resources in large areas.
Implemented in Afghanistan, Darfur (Sudan), Chad, Angola, Iraq, and Ethiopia, clients recognized the system's ability to build a large-scale vision of resources where only little or unreliable information existed. In all cases, WATEX improved the rate of successful drilling to over 95%.
BAMEX™ (Base Mineral Exploration) is a unique technology developed by RTI to addresses standard limitations of traditional mining exploration. The technology combines radar and optical satellite imagery, localized Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) and an in depth understanding of various disciplines including structural geology, geology and geophysics.
RTI can implement BAMEX™ with no prior knowledge or pre-existing data of the area being explored. In fact, RTI sometimes uses the system to reproduce existing maps that were previously inaccurate.
Private and public mining companies use BAMEX™ to discover commercially viable gold, diamond and iron ore deposits. The system has been successfully implemented in Gabon, the Congo, Chad, Mali, Sudan, Tanzania, the Central African Republic and Madagascar.
The HEXUB™ System (Hydrocarbon Exploration of Uplifted Basins) is the result of over 30 years of oil exploration experience. The technology combines radar and optical satellite imagery, traditional oil exploration data and an in-depth understanding of various disciplines including geology, structural geology, and geophysics. Examples of traditional data incorporated into the system include seismic, 3D isochrone or isobath maps, gravimetry and magnetic data, well logs, natural oil seeps or geophysical cross-sections.
HEXUB™ is designed to be used by decision-makers and geoscientists in the early stages of oil exploration. It can be implemented in poor or densely explored areas and has been used to provide new perspectives on old onshore basins when necessary.
The HEXUB™ System has been successfully used for new exploration basins where uplifts and rifting still play a significant role in hydrocarbon target delineations. Examples of these areas include the foothills of the Andes in Peru and Ecuador, the rain forest of West and Central Africa, Tanzania, the remote desert areas of Sudan and Somalia, the Zagros folded belt of Iran, embayments of Kurdistan in Iraq and Central Asia.
From 800 km, a new generation of radar satellites or SAR can map the surface of the sea over swaths of 150 km wide in few seconds, and track all the ships, platforms and drifted oil. Experiments have been carried out for the last 10 years all over the world, to assess qualitatively and quantitatively the potential of SAR for oil spill detection. The presence of an oil film on the sea surface damps out the small waves due to the increased viscosity of the top layer and drastically reduces the backscattered energy, resulting in darker areas in radar imagery. SAR have demonstrated their ability to detect even very thin pollution layers for low wind speeds of 3-4 m/s and thick oil emulsions for wind speeds up to 12m/s.
Slicks as small as 0.1 km2 in area can be detected, such as drilling fluids from offshore oil rigs, small leaks from offshore pipelines, leaks from offshore tankers loading facilities, etc... On SAR imagery, a polluting ship can be measured with an accuracy of 13 m, spotted with an accuracy of 200 m, but not identified, for which an aircraft overflight or knowledge of the ship positional record is needed. Confirmation of a slick detected by SAR is also needed in a court of law (spilling ship) or for implementing pollution countermeasures (fingerprints of oil).
An oil slick never remains static: it spreads under the influence of wind, currents, tides, loosing coherency and breaking up in dispersed patches.
In most cases, cleanup efforts deal with these broken patches because of the time necessary to mount a response team. Oil movement and fate: for each risk site, we can estimate likely quantity of oil, prepare wind and current (including tides) modeling, oil properties.
Resources at risk : for each oil fate, we can identify the degree of impact with high efficiency if mapping is done in emergency with prioritization.
Par décret du Président de la République du 31 décembre 2014 , Mr Alain Gachet a été nommé au grade de Chevalier dans l'Ordre National de la Légion d'Honneur pour ses travaux réalisés pour la recherche de l'eau dans les pays en crises en Afrique et au Moyen-Orient. Cette décoration m'a été attribuée par le Professeur Yves Coppens, Grand Officier de la Légion d'Honneur et professeur Honoraire au Collège de France.
La cérémonie d'intronisation s'est faite dans la chapelle St Nicolas du Couvent des Ursulines à Tarascon en présence de nombreux invités, dont le Sous-Préfet d'Arles, l'Ambassadeur W. Ramsay et l'Ambassadeur E. Berg et le DR. Saud Amer, de l'USGS (Département de l'Intérieur des Etats Unis).
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Feb. 25, 2016) – The Space Foundation’s 32nd Space Symposium culminated on April 14 with ceremonies celebrating the induction into the Space Technology Hall of Fame® of innovations developed for space that now improve life on Earth.
About Radar Technologies International WATEX: Dr. Alain Gachet founded Radar Technologies International in 1999 to use satellite generated remote-sensing data to identify probable locations of precious metals. Analyzing satellite data in pursuit of precious metals in the Libyan Desert, Dr. Gachet made a surprising discovery.
About Radar Technologies International WATEX : Dr. Alain Gachet founded Radar Technologies International in 1999 to use satellite generated remote-sensing data to identify probable locations of precious metals. Analyzing satellite data in pursuit of precious metals in the Libyan Desert, Dr. Gachet made a surprising discovery. He identified a significant water leak in the Libyan water pipeline and realized that he could use satellite data to locate water.
Dr. Gachet developed the WATEX system to pinpoint drilling locations with the highest probability of success. The system uses a variety of data with the primary sources being: NASA's Shuttle Radar Topography Mission; NASA's Spaceborne Imaging Radar; and the joint NASA and U.S. Geological Survey's Landsat Program. These three sources provide roughly 80 percent of the data inputs to the WATEX analysis. Depending on the region of the earth being analyzed, additional data are used to increase accuracy. These sources have included the Canadian Space Agency and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.
The first significant system success came in 2004 during the Darfur crisis -- a major armed conflict in western Sudan. Some 250,000 people were forced into refugee camps. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees contacted RTI for assistance in locating water sources for the evacuees. Over the next four months, RTI located enough water to sustain the camp.
At this time, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) had been providing assistance to another two million refugees. When they learned of RTI's success, USAID engaged Dr. Gachet and his team who located more than enough water to sustain the refugees.
USAID and the U.S. State Department brought in Dr. Saud Amer to evaluate RTI's approach.
Dr. Amer, a remote-sensing specialist with the US Geological Service (USGS), recognized that RTI's approach was truly unique. Prior to RTI's involvement, the NGO's responsible for locating water sources had a success rate of around 33 percent.
Using RTI, success soared to 98 percent.
The U.S. Government appointed Dr. Amer to coordinate work with RTI during the Darfur crisis. He has continued his role for the past 10 years, helping RTI locate crucial water sources in some of the most challenging parts of the world -- including Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Kenya and Iraq.
NASA, the USGS and other space agencies have made remote sensing data openly available. This free exchange of information and knowledge allowed Dr. Gachet and RTI to develop the unique WATEX system, and to significantly improve the lives of millions of people around the world.
2016 Hall of Fame Individual Inductees
The following individuals are being inducted into the Space Technology Hall of Fame®.
Radar Technologies International WATEX:
Dr. Alain Gachet
Commendation: Dr. Saud Amer from US Geological Survey
About The Judges :
The distinguished panel of judges who selected the 2016 Space Technology Hall of Fame® inductees comprised: