Because the earth is predominately anisotropic, the anisotropy of the medium needs to be included in seismic imaging to avoid mispositioning of reflectors and unfocused images. Deriving accurate anisotropic velocities from the seismic reflection measurements is a highly nonlinear and ambiguous process. To mitigate the nonlinearity and trade-offs between parameters, we have included anisotropy in the so-called joint migration inversion (JMI) method, in which we limit ourselves to the case of transverse isotropy with a vertical symmetry axis. The JMI method is based on strictly separating the scattering effects in the data from the propagation effects. The scattering information is encoded in the reflectivity operators, whereas the phase information is encoded in the propagation operators. This strict separation enables the method to be more robust, in that it can appropriately handle a wide range of starting models, even when the differences in traveltimes are more than a half cycle away. The method also uses internal multiples in estimating reflectivities and anisotropic velocities. Including internal multiples in inversion not only reduces the crosstalk in the final image, but it can also reduce the trade-off between the anisotropic parameters because internal multiples usually have more of an imprint of the subsurface parameters compared with primaries. The inverse problem is parameterized in terms of a reflectivity, vertical velocity, horizontal velocity, and a fixed δ value. The method is demonstrated on several synthetic models and a marine data set from the North Sea. Our results indicate that using JMI for anisotropic inversion makes the inversion robust in terms of using highly erroneous initial models. Moreover, internal multiples can contain valuable information on the subsurface parameters, which can help to reduce the trade-off between anisotropic parameters in inversion.

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