Pseudoacoustic algorithms are very fast in comparison with full elastic ones for vertical transversely isotropic (VTI) modeling, so they are suitable for many applications, especially reverse time migration. Finite differences using simple grids are commonly used to solve pseudoacoustic equations. We have developed and implemented general high-order 3D pseudoacoustic transversely isotropic formulations. The focus is the development of staggered-grid finite-difference algorithms, known for their superior numerical properties. The staggered-grid schemes based on first-order velocity-stress wave equations are developed in detail as well as schemes based on direct application to second-order stress equations. This last case uses the recently presented equivalent staggered-grid theory, resulting in a staggered-grid scheme that overcomes the problem of large memory requirement. Two examples are presented: a 3D simulation and a prestack reverse time migration application, and we perform a numerical analysis regarding computational cost and precision. The errors of the new schemes are smaller than the existing nonstaggered-grid schemes. In comparison with existing staggered-grid schemes, they require 25% less memory and only have slightly greater computational cost.

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