In target layers with thicknesses below the vertical seismic resolution as thin layers, the tuning effect/interference between the wave propagation modes may increase the challenge of doing amplitude-variation-with-offset (AVO) analysis because it is difficult to recover the primary PP amplitudes embedded in the data by further seismic data processing. Thus, we have investigated the importance of the primary PP reflections, locally P-SV converted waves, and internal multiple reflections in the amplitude response of two thin-layer seismic physical models. One model consists of a thin water layer embedded between two nylon plates, and another model with a thin acrylic layer surrounded by water. Numerical modeling using the reflectivity method was applied to analyze each wave propagation mode and the source waveform role in the experimental data. Before the experimental reflection data acquisition, we characterized two source and receiver piezoelectric transducer (PET) pairs: one with a circular plane face and the other with a semispherical face. We measured the source wavelet, its dominant frequency, and the PETs’ directivity pattern. Semispherical PETs were chosen to acquire common midpoint reflection data. Thereafter, a processing workflow was applied to remove linear events interfering with the target reflections and to correct amplitudes due to transmission losses, source/receiver directivity, and geometric spreading effects. Finally, we investigated the thin-layer targets near incidence angle amplitude and the AVO response. The results showed that the interference between the primary PP reflections and the locally converted shear waves may considerably affect the observed amplitude response. The source wavelet bandwidth appeared as a second-order effect, and the internal multiple reflections were practically negligible. These results suggested that in real data sets, it is important to investigate the wave propagation modes and source wavelet role in the amplitudes observed, before deciding the AVO analysis/inversion workflow that should be adopted.

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