ABSTRACT

The inverse Laplace transform is one of the methods used to obtain time-domain electromagnetic (EM) responses in geophysics. The Gaver-Stehfest algorithm has so far been the most popular technique to compute the Laplace transform in the context of transient electromagnetics. However, the accuracy of the Gaver-Stehfest algorithm, even when using double-precision arithmetic, is relatively low at late times due to round-off errors. To overcome this issue, we have applied variable-precision arithmetic in the MATLAB computing environment to an implementation of the Gaver-Stehfest algorithm. This approach has proved to be effective in terms of improving accuracy, but it is computationally expensive. In addition, the Gaver-Stehfest algorithm is significantly problem dependent. Therefore, we have turned our attention to two other algorithms for computing inverse Laplace transforms, namely, the Euler and Talbot algorithms. Using as examples the responses for central-loop, fixed-loop, and horizontal electric dipole sources for homogeneous and layered mediums, these two algorithms, implemented using normal double-precision arithmetic, have been shown to provide more accurate results and to be less problem dependent than the standard Gaver-Stehfest algorithm. Furthermore, they have the capacity for yielding more accurate time-domain responses than the cosine and sine transforms for which the frequency-domain responses are obtained by interpolation between a limited number of explicitly computed frequency-domain responses. In addition, the Euler and Talbot algorithms have the potential of requiring fewer Laplace- or frequency-domain function evaluations than do the other transform methods commonly used to compute time-domain EM responses, and thus of providing a more efficient option.

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