The structural geology of the Alberta Rocky Mountain Foothills is dominated by thrust faults and complex folds, often resulting in steeply dipping formations. In these fold and thrust belt areas, hydrocarbon reservoirs are frequently overlain by thick, dipping clastic sequences including shales and thinly interbedded sandstones and shales. Shalles exhibit intrinsic seismic velocity anisotropy, which refers to the variation of velocity with direction, with the main symmetry axis perpendicular to bedding. The main physical reasons for seismic anisotropy are due to aligned mineral grains, aligned cracks, aligned crystals, and periodic thin layering.

In the Western Canadian sedimentary basin, especially in...

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