4D seismic reservoir monitoring is a relatively new technology that consists of repeating 3D seismic surveys in order to make time-lapse images of the fluid and pressure fronts as they move in a subsurface reservoir during hydrocarbon production. When successful, 4D seismic can locate areas of bypassed oil for new drilling opportunities, map out water-flooded areas to avoid the costly mistake of drilling new wells into swept zones, and identify the geometry and nature of reservoir flow compartments that are key to optimizing hydrocarbon recovery.

4D seismic has evolved during the past decade from a series of geophysical field experiments...

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