Mustafa Saribudak, founder of Environmental Geophysics Associates (EGA), is a prominent figure in the geophysical realm. In 1989, Dr. Saribudak joined the University of Houston Geoscience Department as a visiting geoscientist from Istanbul Technical University, Turkey. Following his time at the university, Dr. Saribudak dove into the industry and in 1994, ventured out on his own with EGA, a global geophysical and geological consulting firm. Dr. Saribudak is an active member of the Austin Geological Society, and is a well-known individual in the Austin geophysical community.
Dr. Saribudak’s company, EGA, offers a broad range of geophysical surveys that aid in geotechnical and environmental problems. Geophysical surveys are a cost effective, nonintrusive technique that images subsurface areas. EGA performs surveys to locate buried utilities, underground storage tanks, and other infrastructure, but their specialty is locating and delineating caves, voids, fractures, and sinkholes over the Edwards Aquifer.
The Edwards Aquifer is located in the central region of Texas, USA. This underground layer of water-bearing rock is between 300 and 700 feet thick and covers a total overlying surface area of approximately 3,600 square miles. The structural framework of the Edwards Aquifer is controlled by the Balcones Fault Zone. This aquifer serves a wide range of agricultural, industrial, domestic, and recreational needs for the surrounding areas.
The Barton Springs Pool is one such recreational entity benefitting from the Edwards Aquifer. Measuring three acres in size, the pool is fed from underground springs and is a popular destination for many Austin residents and visitors. The pool’s water source was originally believed to stem from one of the normal faults within the Balcones Fault Zone, the Barton Springs fault. This story outlines how EGA used Surfer during a geophysical survey to prove this was not correct and actually located a new fault.