ABSTRACT

In the geometrical-optics approximation for the Helmholtz equation with a point source, traveltimes and amplitudes have upwind singularities at the point source. Hence, both first-order and higher-order finite-difference solvers exhibit formally at most first-order convergence and relatively large errors. Such singularities can be factored out by factorizing traveltimes and amplitudes, where one factor is specified to capture the corresponding source singularity and the other factor is an unknown function smooth near the source. The resulting underlying unknown functions satisfy factored eikonal and transport equations, respectively. A third-order Lax-Friedrichs scheme is designed to compute the underlying functions. Thus, highly accurate first-arrival traveltimes and reliable amplitudes can be computed. Furthermore, asymptotic wavefields are constructed using computed traveltimes and amplitudes in the WKBJ form. Two-dimensional and 3D examples demonstrate the performance of the proposed algorithms, and the constructed WKBJ Green’s functions are in good agreement with direct solutions of the Helmholtz equation before caustics occur.

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