Modern geoelectrical data acquisition systems can record more than 100 000 data values per field day. Despite the growth in computer power and the development of more efficient numerical algorithms, interpreting such data volumes remains a nontrivial computational task. We present a 2-D one-pass inversion procedure formulated as a multichannel deconvolution. It is based on the equation for the electrical potential linearized under the Born approximation, and it makes use of the 2-D form of the Fréchet derivatives evaluated for the homogeneous half-space. The inversion is formulated in the wavenumber domain so that the 2-D spatial problem decouples into many small 1-D problems. The resulting multichannel deconvolution algorithm is very fast and memory efficient. The inversion scheme is stabilized through covariance matrices representing the stochastic properties of the earth resistivity and data errors.

The earth resistivity distribution is assumed to have the statistical characteristics of a two-parameter, self-affine fractal. The local apparent amplitude and fractal dimension of the earth resistivity are estimated directly from geoelectrical observations. A nonlinearity error covariance matrix is added to the conventional measurement error covariance matrix. The stochastic model for the dependence of nonlinearity error on electrode configuration as well as resistivity amplitude and fractal dimension is determined pragmatically through nonlinear simulation experiments. Tests on synthetic examples and field cases including well control support the conclusion that for long data profiles this method automatically produces linearized resistivity estimates which faithfully resolve the main model features.

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