Abstract

I have developed an alternative narrative of seismic sedimentology from a geologist’s perspective. Seismic sedimentology is a high-resolution supplement for traditional, low-resolution seismic stratigraphy, reflecting the fact that seismic responds to sedimentary bodies differently at low and high resolution. Seismic stratigraphy is a model-driven method that follows the principles of field geology and the well-based study of subsurface sedimentology, and it assumes that seismic reflections can duplicate geologic correlations. Seismic sedimentology is a more data-driven approach based on the understanding of how a seismic signal responds to thin-bedded depositional elements in the context of stratigraphy, which is a function of thickness, lithology-impedance model, wavelet phase, and frequency. Seismic sedimentology is focused on mapping seismic litho-geomorphologic facies, by joint investigation of seismic lithology and seismic geomorphology. In such an investigation, seismic lithology and seismic geomorphology are complementary, making more complete use of seismic information, and they can be more powerful in determining the sedimentary environment and reservoir quality. To reduce the knowledge gap between sedimentary geologists and seismic geophysicists, sedimentologists have to learn and master geophysical principles and techniques. To begin with, a simplified four-step workflow is recommended, which can be summarized as select-adjust-decompose-blend.

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