ABSTRACT

To enable a mathematical description, geologic fractures are considered as infinitely thin planes embedded in a homogeneous medium. These fracture structures satisfy linear slip boundary conditions, namely, a discontinuous displacement and continuous stress. The general finite-difference (FD) method described by the elastic wave equations has challenges when attempting to simulate the propagation of waves at the fracture interface. The FD method expressed by velocity-stress variables with the explicit application of boundary conditions at the fracture interface facilitates the simulation of wave propagation in fractured discontinuous media that are described by elastic wave equations and linear slip interface conditions. We have developed a new FD scheme for horizontal and vertical fracture media. In this scheme, a fictitious grid is introduced to describe the discontinuous velocity at the fracture interface and a rotated staggered grid is used to accurately indicate the location of the fracture. The new FD scheme satisfies nonwelded contact boundary conditions, unlike traditional approaches. Numerical simulations in different fracture media indicate that our scheme is accurate. The results demonstrate that the reflection coefficient of the fractured interface varies with the incident angle, wavelet frequency, and normal and tangential fracture compliances. Our scheme and conclusions from this study will be useful in assessing the properties of fractures, enabling the proper delineation of fractured reservoirs.

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