An approximate subsurface reflectivity distribution of the earth is usually obtained through the migration process. However, conventional migration algorithms, including those based on the least-squares approach, yield structure descriptions that are slightly smeared and of low resolution caused by the common migration artifacts due to limited aperture, coarse sampling, band-limited source, and low subsurface illumination. To alleviate this problem, we use the fact that minimizing the L1-norm of a signal promotes its sparsity. Thus, we formulated the Kirchhoff migration problem as a compressed-sensing (CS) basis pursuit denoise problem to solve for highly focused migrated images compared with those obtained by standard and least-squares migration algorithms. The results of various subsurface reflectivity models revealed that solutions computed using the CS based migration provide a more accurate subsurface reflectivity location and amplitude. We applied the CS algorithm to image synthetic data from a fault model using dense and sparse acquisition geometries. Our results suggest that the proposed approach may still provide highly resolved images with a relatively small number of measurements. We also evaluated the robustness of the basis pursuit denoise algorithm in the presence of Gaussian random observational noise and in the case of imaging the recorded data with inaccurate migration velocities.

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