The rapid and nonintrusive deployment of seismic sensors for near-surface geophysical surveys is of interest to make data acquisition efficient and to operate in a wide variety of environmental and surface-terrain conditions. We have developed and compared near-surface data acquired using a traditional vertical geophone array with data acquired using three different fiber optic cables operating in a distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) configuration. The DAS cables included a helically wrapped fiber, a nearly bare single-strand fiber, and an armored single-strand fiber. These three cables are draped on the ground alongside the geophones. Equivalent processing on colocated shot gathers resulted in a high level of similarity, in particular for reflection energy acquired through geophones and the helically wrapped cable. The single-strand fibers indicate much less similarity. Frequency content, however, differs in the raw and processed gathers from the geophones and the fiber optic cables. Nonetheless, results demonstrate that DAS technology can be used successfully to acquire near-surface reflection seismic data by deploying the cables on the surface. Potential applications for this technology include rapid deployment of active and/or passive arrays for near-surface geophysical characterization for various applications at different scales.

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