Full-resolution 3D GPR imaging
Noninvasive 3D ground-penetrating radar (GPR) imaging with submeter resolution in all directions delineates the internal architecture and processes of the shallow subsurface. Full-resolution imaging requires un-aliased recording of reflections and diffractions coupled with 3D migration processing. The GPR practitioner can easily determine necessary acquisition trace spacing on a frequency-wavenumber (f-k) plot of a representative 2D GPR test profile. Quarter-wavelength spatial sampling is a minimum requirement for full-resolution GPR recording. An intensely fractured limestone quarry serves as a test site for a 100-MHz 3D GPR survey with 0.1 m x 0.2 m trace spacing. This example clearly defines the geometry of fractures in four different orientations, including vertical dips to a depth of 20 m. Decimation to commonly used half-wavelength spatial sampling or only 2D migration processing makes most fractures invisible. The extra data-acquisition effort results in image volumes with submeter resolution, both in the vertical and horizontal directions. Such 3D data sets accurately image fractured rock, sedimentary structures, and archeological remains in previously unseen detail. This makes full-resolution 3D GPR imaging a valuable tool for integrated studies of the shallow subsurface.
Figures & Tables
The use of diffraction imaging to complement the seismic reflection method is rapidly gaining momentum in the oil and gas industry. As the industry moves toward exploiting smaller and more complex conventional reservoirs and extensive new unconventional resource plays, the application of the seismic diffraction method to image sub-wavelength features such as small-scale faults, fractures and stratigraphic pinchouts is expected to increase dramatically over the next few years. “Seismic Diffraction” covers seismic diffraction theory, modeling, observation, and imaging. Papers and discussion include an overview of seismic diffractions, including classic papers which introduced the potential of diffraction phenomena in seismic processing; papers on the forward modeling of seismic diffractions, with an emphasis on the theoretical principles; papers which describe techniques for diffraction mathematical modeling as well as laboratory experiments for the physical modeling of diffractions; key papers dealing with the observation of seismic diffractions, in near-surface-, reservoir-, as well as crustal studies; and key papers on diffraction imaging.