Characteristics of the seismic data acquisition system that previously have been ignored become important as more sophisticated interpretive methods based on broader frequency bandwidths are developed to extract stratigraphic information from land data in hydrocarbon and mineral exploration. Theoretical and experimental results indicate that the geophone plant can be approximated by a damped oscillatory coupling, properties dependent upon the geophone mass, dimension of earth contact, and local soil consolidation.A massive geophone with minimal earth contact exhibits a low-frequency plant resonance with weak damping and acts as a low-pass filter to eliminate the high-frequency components of a recorded signal.A lightweight geophone with large earth contact exhibits a high-frequency plant resonance with strong damping and, consequently, filtering effects are minimal if the plant resonance is well above the signal bandwidth. Although signal filtering influences are weak for strong damping, phase delays can introduce errors of several milliseconds which resemble static errors. Additional complications arise since these time shifts are frequency dependent and, consequently, not identical for all reflection events in a seismic trace.The resonant frequency of the geophone plant increases with increased soil consolidation; however, damping demonstrates only a weak dependence upon consolidation.All of these factors can limit the effectiveness of common-depth-point (CDP) stacking methods if the proper technique is not practiced in the acquisition of broad-bandwidth seismic data.

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