We have developed a new trace-based, warping least-squares inversion method to quantify 4D velocity changes. There are two steps to solve for these velocity changes: (1) dynamic warping with phase constraints to align the baseline and monitor traces and (2) least-squares inversion for 4D velocity changes incorporating the time shifts and 4D amplitude differences (computed after trace alignment by warping). We have demonstrated this new inversion workflow using simple synthetic layered models. For the noise-free case, phase-constrained warping is superior to standard, amplitude-based warping by improving trace alignment, resulting in more accurate inverted velocity changes (less than 1% error). For synthetic data with 6% rms noise, inverted velocity changes are reasonably accurate (less than 10% error). Additional inversion tests with migrated finite-difference data shot over a realistic anticline model result in less than 10% error. The inverted velocity changes on a 4D field data set from the Gulf of Mexico are more interpretable and consistent with the dynamic reservoir model than those estimated from the conventional time-strain method.

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