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# Full Solution of the Zoeppritz Equations

T.B. Berge
Forest Oil International

In order to evaluate amplitude-vs-offset response from seismic data it is often
useful to model the partitioning of energy with different angles of incidence to a
prospective horizon interface and then compare model results with real seismic
gathers. This is approach is common in AVO analysis. The forward solution is to
solve for the amplitude values of the reflected and transmitted shear and compression
modes by solving first Snells !aw for the resultant raypath angles" then solution of
the #oeppritz e\$uations for the amplitude values of the resultant modes.
%omogeneous isotropic conditions are assumed.
Snells Law and Wae !artitioning
&ig. ' shows the phenomenon of energy partitioning at an interface. (y solving
for the wave parameter )p* Snells !aw )e\$. '* calculates the resultant wave
emergence angles.
&ig '" +nergy ,artitioning at an interface" from Telford" -eldart" Sheriff" and .eys"
'/01" p. 23/" fig. 3.'1*
n = ,-wave Velocity
n 4 S-wave Velocity
n = ,-wave angle
n 4 S-wave angle
+\$. '" Snell5s !aw )e\$. 3.26" Ibid*
Zoeppritz Solution
Then the #oeppritz e\$uations can be solved to calculate the amplitude values
of the resultant modes )+\$s. 2a" 2b" 2c" and 2d*. They are in the form of 3 e\$uations
with 3 un7nowns. There are other formulations of the #oeppritz e\$uations but when
shown in this form their solution is direct. 8otice that these e\$uations all have the
form9 constant:A'constant:A2... constant:An4constant )once the ,;S velocities"
densities" and Snells !aw values< incident" reflected" and transmitted" are 7nown*
where An is a resultant wave amplitude value.
+\$s. 2a" 2b" 2c" and 2d." #oeppritz simultaneous e\$uations for waveform patitioning
)AVO*. )&rom Telford" -eldart" Sheriff" and .eys" '/01" e\$s. 3.21a" 3.21b" 3.21c"
and 3.21d*
The solution for 3 simultaneous e\$uations with 3 un7nowns involves a matri=
calculation that is described by the theorem 7nown as >?ramers @ule> which states9
>If the determinant A of the coefficients in a system of n linear e\$uations in n
un7nowns is not zero" then the e\$uations have a uni\$ue solution. In the solution" each
Bhere
#n = S Impedance
Bn 4 , Impedance
n = VsCVp
un7nown may be e=pressed as a fraction of two determinants with denominator A
and with numerator obtained from A by replacing the column of coefficients of the
un7nown in \$uestion by the constants c'" c2" ..." cn.D )Thomas" -eorge" >?alculus
and Analytic -eometry>" E'/02*. So the 3 #oeppritz e\$uations can be solved by
inversion and multiplication of the two matrices9

Aeterminants
F cos -sin cos sin F
F sin cos -sin cos F
F #cos2 -Bsin2 -#cos2 -Bsin2 F
F Bsin2 Bcos2 Bsin2 -Bcos2 F

?oefficients

F Acos F
F -Asin F
F -A#cos2 F
F A Bsin2 F

"al#ulation for One in#iden#e angle

?alculation of the 3 converted wave amplitude values )assuming Snell5s calculations
have been performed* would involve first inversion of the determinant matri= and
then matri= multiplication of the inverted and coefficient matrices. An e=ample of
such a calculation for ' incidence angle is9
A'4

F Acos -sin cos sin F
F -Asin cos -sin cos F
F -A#cos2 -Bsin2 -#cos2 -Bsin2 F
F A Bsin2 Bcos2 Bsin2 -Bcos2 F
GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG
F cos -sin cos sin F
F sin cos -sin cos F
F #cos2 -Bsin2 -#cos2 -Bsin2 F
F Bsin2 Bcos2 Bsin2 -Bcos2 F

('4

F cos Acos cos sin F
F sinH' -AsinH' -sin cos F
F #cos2 -A#cos2 -#cos2 -Bsin2 F
F I'Bsin2 A Bsin2 Bsin2 -Bcos2 F
GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG
F cos -sin cos sin F
F sin cos -sin cos F
F #cos2 -Bsin2 -#cos2 -Bsin2 F
F Bsin2 Bcos2 Bsin2 -Bcos2 F

A24

F cos -sin Acos sin F
F sin cos -Asin cos F
F #cos2 -Bsin2 -A#cos2 -Bsin2 F
F Bsin2 Bcos2 A 'sin2 -Bcos2 F
GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG
F cos -sin cos sin F
F sin cos -sin cos F
F #cos2 -Bsin2 -#cos2 -Bsin2 F
F Bsin2 Bcos2 Bsin2 -Bcos2 F

(24

F cos -sin cos Acos F
F sin cos -sin -Asin F
F #cos2 -Bsin2 -#cos2l2 -A#cos2 F
F Bsin2 Bcos2 Bsin2 A Bsin2 F
GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG
F cos -sin cos sin F
F sin cos -sin cos F
F #cos2 -Bsin2 -#cos2 -Bsin2 F
F Bsin2 Bcos2 Bsin2 -Bcos2 F

The calculation must be performed for every angle of incidence" which can be done
\$Full%Zoeppritz& '(O solutions
These 3 formulas then are the complete single-formula )albeit matri=K* solutions for
amplitude as a function of offset for the 3 resultant waveforms. Bhile not many are
interested in the AVO of the transmitted waves yet" the first and second formulas are
\$uite useful and significant.
The first e\$uation" which is the e\$uation for the reflected ,-wave amplitude as a
function of incidence angle" has been e=pressed many times as an appro=imation. (ut
unli7e the Shuey e\$uation" the &atti et al formula" and others" this one is not an
appro=imation. Bhile not the subLect of this paper" it can be shown that the Shuey
and &atti et al appro=imations while acceptable at small offsets are increasingly
erroneous with offset. These errors may not be acceptable if one is to attempt fluid or
gas recognition. In applications where ,-wave AVO is modeled of calculated this
e\$uation is a better one to use.
The second e\$uation is the @eflected S-wave amplitude as a function of offset. It is
the shear-realm e\$uivalent of Shuey5s or &atti5s e\$uations" but again not an estimate.
This e\$uation can be used to calculated pseudo-shear gathers for instance" or in any
other application where S-wave reflectivity is calculated.
?alculation can be implemented in a spreadsheet by formulas to solve first Snell5s
law" then the #oeppritz e\$uations by defining the Aeterminant and ?oefficient
matrices for each incident angle from M to /M degrees as discussed. These matrices
can then be first inverted then multiplied to calculate each of the resultant wave
amplitudes for that incident angle using the NI8V+@T and NNO!T +J?+!
functions input as array formulas. ?ompressional and Shear velocities for the beds
above and below the interface as well as densities will be input variables in the
model.
E*a)ples of '(O "lasses
%ere are e=amples of the 3-AVO classes.
&ig. 2" Illustration of AVO classes.
&ig. P" An +=ample of a ?lass ' AVO.
&ig. P shows AVO response from a ?lass ' type where there is a strong positive near-
offset amplitude that decreases with offset. In this model" where all incidence angles
up to /MQ are shown" the model reaches critical angle at 6RQ. At angles greater than
6RQ all energy is reflected and there is no transmission to deeper horizons. In the
practice of AVO analysis it is common to loo7 more carefully at incidence angles less
than 36Q as these lower incidence angles are all that are effectively recorded. It is also
AVO
-0.4
-0.2
0
0.2
0.4
0.6
0.8
1
1.2
1.4
1.6
1.8
M 'M 2M PM 3M 6M 1M 0M RM /M
Incidence Angle
R
e
l
a
t
i
v
e

A
m
p
l
i
t
u
d
e
P Reflected
S Reflected
P Transmitted
S Transmitted

AVO
?lasses
)?astagna" '//P* %ypothetical
Type '
Vp'4'226M
Vp24'36MM
Vs'41'26
Vs24RRMM
S'" S'42.P3
%ypothetical
+=ample
Type '
?ritical
Angle
Vp'4'226M
Vp24'36MM
Vs'41'26
Vs24RRMM
S'" S242.P3
Type '
common to omit the , transmitted mode since it is usually has a much higher value
than the other modes and if not omitted will dominate the graph. &ig. 3 shows this
same model with these changes.
&ig. 3" ?lass ' AVO model with incidence angles to 36 degrees.
?ompare the model response to &ig.2 of ?lass '. (oth show a high amplitude near-
offset response that decreases with offset and changes polarity. Similarly" &igs. 6" 1"
and 0 show e=amples of the other P AVO ?lasses and the parameters that would
produce them. ?ompare these e=amples with &ig.2 also.
AVO, to 45deg
-0.2
-0.15
-0.1
-0.05
0
0.05
0.1
0.15
0.2
0.25
0.3
0.35
M 6 'M '6 2M 26 PM P6 3M 36
Incidence Angle
R
e
l
a
t
i
v
e

A
m
p
l
i
t
u
d
e
P Reflected
S Reflected
S Transmitted
Vp'4'226M
Vp24'36MM
Vs'41'26
Vs24RRMM
S'" S242.P3
AVO, to 45deg
-0.1
-0.08
-0.06
-0.04
-0.02
0
0.02
0.04
0.06
M 6 'M '6 2M 26 PM P6 3M 36
Incidence Angle
R
e
l
a
t
i
v
e

A
m
p
l
i
t
u
d
e
P Reflected
S Reflected
S Transmitted
Vp'4'226M
Vp24''6MM
Vs'46/MM
Vs241MMM
S'42.'M
S242.3
Type 2
?lass 2
&ig. 6" ?lass 2 AVO e=ample.
&ig. 1" +=ample of ?lass P AVO. This e=ample is a real one" from the &orest Oil A-
T' well" and based on dipole sonic measurements.
Vp'4'226M
Vp24''1MM
Vs'412MM
Vs24116M
S'42.11
S242.P3
-as Sand" A-T'
P2MMm
AVO, to 45deg
-0.15
-0.1
-0.05
0
0.05
0.1
M 6 'M '6 2M 26 PM P6 3M 36
Incidence Angle
R
e
l
a
t
i
v
e

A
m
p
l
i
t
u
d
e
P Reflected
S Reflected
S Transmitted
Vp'4'226M
Vp24'M26M
Vs'41'26
Vs246'26
S'" S242.P3
?lass 3
AVO, to 45deg
-0.25
-0.2
-0.15
-0.1
-0.05
0
0.05
0.1
M 6 'M '6 2M 26 PM P6 3M 36
Incidence Angle
R
e
l
a
t
i
v
e

A
m
p
l
i
t
u
d
e
P Reflected
S Reflected
S Transmitted
Vp'4'226M
Vp24''1MM
Vs'412MM
Vs24116M
S'42.11
S242.P3
-as Sand" A-T'
P2MMm
?lass P
&ig. 0" +=ample of ?lass 3 AVO.
"o)paring '(O +esponses
In AVO UAata Nining5 ) ie. in an effort to screen AVO suspects* it may be useful to
model wet and %? bearing cases and compare their response-first to each other then
to real gather data. &ig. 0 shows the reflected ,-wave amplitude vs. offset )AVO*
curves for 2 cases" a wet sand interval and a gas-productive interval. (oth near-trace
amplitude and AVO gradient are larger for the gas case. It is obvious that stac7ed
amplitude would be an e=cellent attribute to help predict gas in this case.
&ig. R shows the same 2 curves" only the gas curve has been normalized by shifting it
to the water case curve. &rom this perspective it is evident that some sort of near-
trace vs. far trace operation" such as an intercept:gradient volume would also be
useful. Information about the difference if fluid content is seen by the increasing
difference in the offset amplitude. &urther comparison of the 2 models shows that
there is progresssively more mode conversion to shear modes in both cases" but more
occurs at lower angles in the gas case.
&ig. R" @eflected ,-wave amplitude vs. offset response from a water sand )blue*
compared to a gas sand )red*.
AVO, comparison of 2 cases
angles to 45
-0.25
-0.2
-0.15
-0.1
-0.05
0
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45
Angle of Incidence
R
e
l
a
t
i
v
e

A
m
p
l
i
t
u
d
e
P Reflected Case 1
P Reflected Case 2
A-T Bell
Aipole data
P2MMm.
?ase ' - wet sand
?ase 2 - -as Sand
&ig. /" A comparison of reflected ,-wave AVO curves for the 2 cases normalized to
the water case.
Although conclusions may differ in other areas or plays" it is easy to see the value of
e=amining forward models of AVO response. ,erhaps more importantly" now that we
are trying to estimate S-wave converted data from AVO response" we should be using
a full solution of the #oeppritz e\$uations and not an appro=imation. The mathematics
of the full solution" while not easy" are evident.

@eferences
?astagna" V. ,." '//P" AVO analysis - Tutorial and review" in (ac7us" N. N." +d."
Offset-dependent reflectivity - theory and practice of AVO analysis9 Soc. of +=pl.
-eophys." P-P1.*
Telford" B.N." -eldart" !.,." Sheriff" @.+." and .eys" A.A." '/01" Applied
-eophysics>" ?ambridge Oniversity ,ress" R1Mp.
Thomas" -eorge ,. Vr." '/02" >?alculus and Analytic -eometry> Addison-Besley
,ublishing ?ompany" Inc." 'MP3 p.
AVO, comparison of 2 cases
angles to 45
Normalized to Case 1 !offset amp
-0.18
-0.16
-0.14
-0.12
-0.1
-0.08
-0.06
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45
Angle of Incidence
R
e
l
a
t
i
v
e

A
m
p
l
i
t
u
d
e
P Reflected Case 1
P Reflected Case 2
A-T Bell
Aipole data
P2MMm.
?ase ' - wet sand
?ase 2 - -as Sand
&atti" V.!." Smith" -.?." Vail" ,.V." Strauss" ,.V." and !evitt" ,.@." '//3" WAetection of
gas in sandstone reservoirs using AVO analysis9 A P-A seismic case history using the
-eostac7 techni\$ueD in -eophysics" Vol. 6/" no. /" September" '//3" p. 'P12-'P01.