The concept of downward continuation of a seismic wavefield recorded on the earth's surface to remove near-surface effects has previously been applied by a number of authors including Schultz and Sherwood (1980), Berryhill (1979, 1984), and McMechan and Chen (1990). Recently, McMechan and Sun (1991) demonstrated, using synthetic elastic data, that downward continuation of an elastic (two-component) seismic wavefield separates various seismic waves, based on their depth of propagation. This was used to simultaneously remove direct waves and ground roll. The direct compressional and shear waves and the ground roll get left behind in the near surface during downward continuation; subsequent upward continuation reconstructs the surface-recorded wavefield without the waves propagating in the shallow layers.

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