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Book Chapter

Tube Waves and Borehole Coupling

January 01, 2000


More than a century ago Horace Lamb showed that pressure waves in a fluid-filled pipe or borehole travel at a speed which depends on the yielding of the hole wall. These tube waves have been discussed quite fully in the literature including permeability of the rock, reflection at a change in hole size, lithologic boundary and other structural details.

Oil wells have been “shot for velocity,” that is, the time (T) from a surface source and a geophone at depth (D) yields an average velocity V = D/T. Without a theory for guidance, one had to accept as fact that the signal was sometimes too weak to measure or was of reverse polarity. The theory published in 1953 explained these and other oddities.

If fluid volume changes in a short length of a hole, a pressure pulse travels outward. If changes in the diameter are caused by seismic waves in the solid, a summation of these pressure pulses produces the response in the borehole, resulting from external plane waves. This is an example of borehole coupling.

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Society of Exploration Geophysicists Geophysics Reprint Series

Seismic Wave Propagation: Collected Works of J. E. White

J. E. White
J. E. White
Professor Emeritus, Colorado School of Mines
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Society of Exploration Geophysicists
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Publication date:
January 01, 2000




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