An integrated wave-equation datuming scheme improves the imaging quality of seismic data from overthrust areas. It can be regarded as integrated because upward-layer replacement is included. In this scheme, data are downward continued to a nonplanar datum (such as the base of the weathering layer), followed by upward continuation from the nonplanar datum to a final planar datum using a one-way extrapolator. When compared with a Kirchhoff integral, this method can deal better with the strong lateral velocity variation within the near surface. After a test on synthetic data, the scheme is applied successfully to real 2D overthrust data acquired in the Qi-Lian foothills, western China. Compared with results using static corrections, integrated wave-equation datuming results lead to better reconstruction of the diffractions and reflections, more reliable migration-velocity analyses, and stronger stack and final depth images.

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