The generation of microseismic events is often associated with induced fractures/faults during the extraction/injection of fluids. A full characterization of the spatiotemporal distribution of microseismic events provides constraints on fluid migration paths in the formations. We have developed a high-resolution source imaging method — a hybrid multiplicative time-reversal imaging (HyM-TRI) algorithm, for automatically tracking the spatiotemporal distribution of microseismic events. HyM-TRI back propagates the data traces from groups of receivers (in space and time) as receiver wavefields, multiplies receiver wavefields between all groups, and applies a causal integration over time to obtain a source evolution image. Using synthetic and field-data examples, we revealed the capability of the HyM-TRI technique to image the spatiotemporal sequence of asynchronous microseismic events, which poses a challenge to standard TRI methods. Moreover, the HyM-TRI technique is robust enough to produce a high-resolution image of the source in the presence of noise. The aperture of the 2D receiver array (azimuth coverage in 3D) with respect to the microseismic source area plays an important role on the horizontal and vertical resolution of the source image. The HyM-TRI results of the field data with 3D azimuthal coverage further verify our argument by producing a superior resolution of the source than TRI.

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