abstract

A systematic theory of the propagation of seismic waves in liquid-saturated porous solids was first developed by Biot in 1956. Since then, some theoretical investigations have been carried out on the propagation of body and surface waves in such media. Further studies in this area may be useful in giving greater insight into the propagation of seismic waves in underground layers of porous solids saturated with oil or groundwater. In this connection, the transmission of normally incident seismic waves across the boundary of a liquid-saturated porous solid has been considered earlier. Keeping in view the fact that oblique incidence is more likely than normal incidence for such seismic waves, the authors have investigated the reflection and refraction of P and SV waves, which become obliquely incident at the boundary of a liquid-saturated porous solid, after propagating through an elastic solid. It is found that, corresponding to both P and SV waves obliquely incident at the boundary, there will be two refracted dilatational waves traveling with different velocities, which may be called the Pf and Ps waves, and one refracted SV wave, in the liquid-saturated porous solid, together with reflected P and SV waves in the elastic solid. The amplitude and energy ratios for the different reflected and refracted waves have been calculated theoretically. Numerical values of the amplitude and energy ratios have been computed for different angles of incidence for P and SV waves which propagate through granite, and then become incident at the boundary between the granite and oil-saturated sandstone, using results of laboratory experiments on the elastic behavior of oil-saturated sandstone. It is found that the amplitudes of the reflected and refracted waves depend significantly on the angle of incidence. It is also found that the amplitude of the second refracted P wave is usually much smaller than that of the other reflected and refracted P and SV waves, so that this slower refracted P wave will be difficult to detect. Similar amplitudes and energy ratios are also calculated for P and SV waves incident at the boundary between granite and dry sandstone. Comparison between the cases of dry sandstone and oil-saturated sandstone shows that the presence of oil usually has a significant effect on the amplitudes of the reflected and refracted P and SV waves.

It is noted that such theoretical investigations may be useful in utilizing the amplitudes and other characteristics of reflected and refracted seismic waves in the detection and study of underground layers of porous solids saturated with oil or groundwater.

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