Seismic data processing decisions are often made through a conventional procedure of technical-commercial tendering. This, and the review of slick brochures, impressive CVs, and long lists of worldwide processing experiences, more often than not win the contract for the lowest bidder. A routine processing project then proceeds with regular quality control meetings in which client representatives visually inspect various tests and make on-the-spot decisions for this gap or that window.

Unfortunately—and particularly in this age of high-resolution geophysical reservoir characterization, time-lapse quality requirements, and subtle porosity and fracture-zone uncertainties—conventional seismic data processing quality control and quality assurance (QC/QA) steps are...

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