Abstract

Seismic modeling is commonly used in determining subsurface illumination of alternative seismic survey designs, in the calibration of seismic processing and imaging algorithms, and in the design of effective processing workflows. Seismic modeling also forms the mathematical kernel of impedance inversion and is routinely used to predict the amplitude-variation-with-offset response as a function of rock and fluid properties. However, the use of seismic modeling in seismic attribute studies is less common. We have evaluated four case studies in which 2D synthetic common shot gathers were computed (acoustic or elastic) and processed (including migration) to evaluate possible interpretation hypotheses. The modeling we used in our study shows that the lack of continuous coherence anomalies in a faulted Chicontepec Basin survey was due to overprinting by coherent interbed multiples. Attributes computed from the resulting processed model data revealed that subtle curvature anomalies in a Mississippi Lime survey were due to karst collapse rather than to velocity pushdown related to vertical gas migration. Impedance attributes computed from a Woodford Shale model favored the hypothesis of increased porosity correlated with the occurrence of subtle faults rather than amplitude dimming due to poor fault imaging. Finally, modeling of a fractured basement survey in the Texas Panhandle survey indicated that headwave suppression preserved the basement fracture response while increasing the signal-to-noise ratio. Seismic attribute study on seismic modeling results helped significantly in testing possible interpretation hypotheses in all of our case studies.

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