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Introduction

Seismic wave attenuation (absorption or intrinsic attenuation) is underutilized by the petroleum industry mainly because of the difficulty of measuring it with sufficient accuracy using seismic reflection methods. However, the recent trend toward time-lapse 3D seismic monitoring of reservoirs means that absolute attenuation measurements are no longer so important. Instead, temporal changes in seismic amplitude and wavelet frequency content could hold the key to interpreting changes in reservoir fluid properties in response to certain production strategies. Seismic monitoring of heavy-oil reservoirs would be particularly appropriate because of the known link between seismic attenuation and pore fluid viscosity (Batzle et...

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