Seismic profiles have become an important medium for illustrating interpreted structural geometry and style. In areas of steep dip and complex geologic structure, however, these profiles often yield distorted structural views due to vertical or horizontal exaggeration. Geological misinterpretation may result if the effects of this exaggeration are not recognized.

Seismic profiles from the central Rocky Mountain basins illustrate the geometrical distortion produced by significant scale exaggeration. To assist in analysis of these profiles, three nomograms have been constructed. The nomograms show graphically the relationships between exaggeration factors, exaggerated dips, unexaggerated dips, and correction factors which are derived from the ratio of exaggerated orthogonal thicknesses to true orthogonal thicknesses. With knowledge of the horizontal scale, the nomograms also can be used to estimate average velocities on exaggerated profiles in areas of steep dip and uniform stratigraphic thicknesses.

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