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Introduction

Part

to Seismic Inversion Methods

2 - The Convolutional

Model

Brtan Russell

PART
2 - THECONVOLUTIONAL
MODEL

Page 2 -

Introduction

to Seismic Inversion Methods

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Part 2 -

Brian Russell

The Convolutional

Mooel

2.1 Th'e Sei smic Model

The mostbasic and commonly


used one-Oimensionalmoael for the seismic
trace is referreU

to as the convolutional

moOel, which states that the seismic

trace is simplythe convolutionof the earth's reflectivity with a seismic


source function

with the adUltion of a noise component. In

equation

form,

where * implies convolution,

s(t) : w(t) * r(t) + n(t)s


where

and

s (t)

= the sei smic trace,

w(t)

: a seismic wavelet,

r (t)

: earth refl ecti vi ty,

n(t)

: additive

noise.

An even simpler assumptionis to consiUerthe noise component


to be zero,
in which case the seismic tre is simply the convolution of a seismic wavelet
with te earth ' s refl ecti vi ty,
s(t)

In

= w{t) * r(t).

seismic processingwe deal exclusively with digital data, that

data sampled
at a constanttime interval.

is,

If weconsiUerthe relectivity to

consist of a reflection coefficient at each time sample(som of which can be

zero), and the wavelet to be a smooth function in time, convolutioncan be


thoughtof as "replacing"eachreflection. coefficient with a scaledversion of
the waveletandsumming
the result. The result of this processis illustrated

in Figures 2.1 and2.Z for botha "sparse"anda "dense"set of reflection


coefficients.

Notice that convolution

with

the wavelet tends to "smear" the

reflection coefficients. That is, there is a total loss of resolution,which


is the ability

to resolve closely spacedreflectors.

Part 2 - The Convolutional

Model

Page

Introduction

to Seismic Inversion

Nethods

Brian Russell

WAVELET:

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(a) '*

-' ':'

REFLECTIVITY

TRACE:

Figure 2.1

(a)

Convolutionof a wavelet with a sparse"reflectivity.


(a) avelet. (b) Reflectivit.y. (c) Resu1ting Seismic Trace.

'?t

(b')

Fi ure 2.2

Convolution of a wavelet with a sonic-derived

reflectivity.
,

Par

, ....

2 - The Convolutional

(a) Wavelet. (b) Reflectivity.


i

L_

Model

"dense"

(c) SeismicTrace

'

Page 2 -

Introduction

to Seismic

An alternate,

Inver'sion

Methods

Brian

but equivalent, way of

the frequency domain.

Russell

looking at the seismic trace is in

If we take the Fourier transform of

the previous

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equati on, we may write

S(f)
where

= W(f) x R(f),

S(f) = Fouriertransform
of s(t),
W(f) = Fourier transform of w(t),
R(f) = Fourier transform of r(t),

In the above equation we see that

ana f = frequency.

convolution becomesmultiplication

in

the frequency domain. However, the Fourier transform is a complex function,


and it

is normal to consiUer the amplitude and phase spectra of the individual

components. The spectra of S(f) may then be simply expressed

esCf)= ew(f) + er(f),


where

I ndicates
amplitude
spectrum,
and
0

In
the

Figure 2.3

illustrates

the convolutional model

frequency domain. Notice that the time Oomainproblem of

resolution becomesone of loss of


reOuceo by the effects

2 - The Convolutional

loss

of

frequency content in the frequency domain.

Both the high and low frequencies of the reflectivity

Part

other words, convolution involves multiplying the amplitude spectra

and adding the phase spectra.

in

indicates phase spectrum.

have been severely

of the seismic wavelet.

Mooel

Page ?. -

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Introduction to Seismic Inversion Methods

AMPLITUDE

Brian Russell

SPECTRA

PHASE SPECTRA

w (f)
I

-tR (f)

i i

,
i.

I
iit

loo

|11

s (f)
i

i!

Figure 2.3

Part

2 - The Convolutional

Convolution in the frequency domain for


the time series shown in Figure 2.1.

Model

Page 2 -

Introduction

2.g

The Reflection
l_

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to Seismic

,m

Inversion

Coefficient
_

m_

_,

Methods

Brian

Russell

Series
_ _

el

'The reflection coefficient series (or reflectivity,

as it is also called)

describedin theprevious
sectionis oneof thefundamental
physical
concepts
in the seismic method. Basically, each reflection coefficient maybe thought
of
as
the res ponse of the seismic wavelet to an acoustic impeUance change
within
the
ear th,
where acoustic impedance is defined as the proUuct of
compressi onal velocity and Uensity. Mathematically, converting from acoustic
involves dividing the difference in the acoustic
i ropedanceto re flectivity
impedances by the sum of the acoustic impeaances. This gives te
coefficient

at

the boundary between the two layers.

reflection

The equation is as

fo11 aws:

i+lVi+l- iVi
i
where

Zi+l- Zi
i+1

r = reflection

coefficient,

/o__density,
V -- compressional velocity,
Z -- acoustic impeUance,
and

Layer i overlies Layer i+1.

Wemust also convert from depth to time by integrating the sonic log
transit times. Figure .4 showsa schematicsonic log, density log, anU
resulting acoustic impedancefor a simplifieU

earth moael. Figure 2.$ shows

the resultof converting


to thereflection
coefficient
seriesandintegrating
to

time.

It should be pointed out that this formula is true only for the normal
incidence case, that is, for a seismic wave striking the reflecting interface
at right angles to the beds. Later in this course, we shall consider the case
of

Part

nonnormal

inciaence.

2 - The Convolutional

Model

Page 2 -

Introduction to Seismic Inversion Methods

STRATIGRAPHIC

Brian Russell
OENSITY

SONICLOG

SECTION

30O

4OO

loo

200

2.0

3.0

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SHALE

LOG.

T (usec./mette)

.....

3600 m/s

DEPTH

SANOSTONE

. .

'I

- .. ,

!_1

v--I

UMESTONEI I I ! I ! I 1

V--3600
J

V= 6QO0

LIMESTONE

2000111

Fig. 2.4. BoreholeLogMeasurements.


REFLECTWrrY

ACOUSTIC

VS TWO.WAY
TIME

IMPED,MCE (2

(Yocrrv
mm

,mm

mm

mm

rome

-----

V$ OEPTH

x OEaSn
20K -.25
I

.am

Q.2S
I

-.25
v

O
'

+ .2S
I

mm

SHALE .....

OEPTH

--------'-[

SANDSTONE . . ...
!

!11

I1

UMESTONE
I I 1 I I I II
i ! I 1 i I i
SHALE .--._--.----

1000m

1000 m

--

NO

.'

LIMESTONE

- 20o0 m

2000 m

Fig.

2.5.

, ..

Creation of Reflectivity

Part g - The Convolutional Model

I SECOND

Sequence.

Page 2 -

IntroductJ

on 1:o Sei stoic Inversion

Our best method of

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derlye

Herhods

observing

them from well log curves.

Bri an Russell

seJsmc impedance and reflectivity

is o

Thus, we maycreate an impedancecurve

by

multiplying together he sonic and density logs from a well. Wemayhen


computethe reflectivlty by using he formula shownearlier. Often, we do not
have the density log available to us and must makedo with only the sonJc. The

approxJmatJonof velocJty to mpedance


1s a reasonable approxjmation, and

seemsto holdwell for clas;cics and carbonates(not evaporltes, however).


Figure 2.6 showsthe sonic and reflectJvty traces from a typJcal Alberta well
after they have been Jntegrated to two-way tlme.
As we shall see later,

the type of

aleconvolution and inversion used is

dependent on the statistical assumptionswhich are made about the seismic


reflectivity
and wavelet. Therefore, howcan we describe the reflectivity
seen
in

well?

reflectivity

The

traditional

to be a perfectly

answer has always been that

we consider

random sequence and, from Figure .6,

the

this

appears to be a good assumption. A ranUomsequencehas the property that

autocorrelation is a spike at zero-lag.


autocorrelation are zero except the

its

That is, all the componentsof the

zero-lag value, as shownin the following

equati on-

t(Drt = ( 1 , 0 , 0 , .........

t
zero-lag.

Let

2.7.

us test this idea on a theoretical

Notice that the

autocorrelation

of

random sequence, shownin

Figure

this sequence has a large spike at

the zeroth lag, but that there is a significant noise component at nonzero
lags. To have a truly random sequence, it must be infinite in extent. Also
on this figure is shown the autocorrelation of a well
log erived

reflectivity.
Wesee that it is even less "random"than the randomspike
sequence. Wewill discuss this in more detail on the next page.

Part

2 - The Convolutional

Model

Page 2 -

IntroductJon

to Se.s=c Inversion

Methods

Bran

Russell

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RFC

Fg. 2.6. Reflectivitysequence


derivedfromsonJc
.log.

RANDOM

SPIKE SEQUENCE

AUTOCORREJATION
OF RANDOMSEQUENCE

Fig.

2.7.

WELL LOG DERIVED REFLECT1vrrY

AUTOCORRELATION

OF REFLECTIVITY

Autocorrelat4ons of random and well log

der4vedspike sequences.

Part

2 - The Convolutional

Model

Page 2-

Introductlon

to Sei smic Inversion

Methods

Therefore, the true earth reflectivity


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truly

Brian Russel 1

cannot be consideredas being

random. For a typical Alberta well we see a numberof large spikes

(coresponding
to majorlithol ogic change)sticking up abovethe crowd.A good
way to describethis statistically is as a Bernoulli-Gaussian
sequence. The
Bernoulli part of this term implies a sparsenessin the positions of the
spikes and the Gaussianimplies a randomness
in their amplitudes. Whenwe
generatesuch a sequence,there is a term, lambda, which controls the
sparsenessof the spikes. For a lambdaof 0 there are no spikes, and for a
lambdaof 1, the sequence
is perfectly Gaussian in distribution. Figure 2.8
shows a number of such series for different

typical Alberta well log reflectivity

values of lambda.

Notice that

wouldhavea lambdavalue in the 0.1 to

0.5 range.

Part

2 - The Convolutional

Model

Page 2 -

10

I ntroducti on to Sei smic I nversi on Methods

Brian Russell

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It

tl

11 I

LAMBD^0.01

511 t

tl

(VERY SPARSE)

11

311

4#

511 I

#1

TZIIE

LAMBDA--O.

(KS !

1,1

::." ';'"' "";''l'


"'r'

- "(11
I
TX#E

(HS)

LAMBDAI0.5

LAMBDA--

1.0 (GAUSSIAN:]

EXAMPLESOF REFLECTIVITIES

Fig.

2.8.

Examplesof reflectivities
factor

to be discussed

using lambda

in Part

6.

Part 2 - The Convolutional Model

Page 2 -

11

Introduction

2.3

The Seismic
--

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to Seismic Inversion ,Methods

Brian Russell

Wavelet

Zero Phase and Constant Phase Wavelets


m _

m _

The assumptiontha.t there is a single, well-defined wavelet which is


convolved with the reflectivity
to producethe seismic trace is overly
simplistic. Morerealistically, the wavelet is both time-varying and complex
in shape. However,the assumptionof a simple wavelet is reasonable, and in
this

section

we shall

consider

several

types

of

wavelets

and

their

characteristics.

First,

let us consider the Ricker wavelet, which consists of a peak and

two troughs, or side lobes. The Ricker wavelet is dependentonly on its


dominant frequency, that is, the peak frequencyof its alitude spectrum or
the inverse of the dominantperiod in the time domain(the dominantperiod is

found by measuringthe time from troughto trough). TwoRicker wave'lets are


shownin Figures 2.9 and 2.10 of frequencies 20 and 40 Hz. Notice that as the
anqlitude spectrumof a wavelet .is broadened,the wavelet gets narrower in the

timedomain,
indicatingan increase
of resolution.Ourultimatewaveletwould
be a spike, with a flat amplitude spectrum. Sucha wavelet is an unrealistic
goal in seismic processing, but one that is aimedfor.
The Rtcker wavelets of

Figures 2.9

and 2.10

are also zero-phase, or

perfectly symmetrical. This is a desirable character.tstic of wavelets since


the energy is then concentrated at a positive peak, and the convol'ution of the
wavelet

with

a reflection

coefficient

will

better

resolve

that

reflection.

To

get an idea of non-zero-phase wavelets, consider Figure 2.11, where a Ricker


wavelet

has been rotated by 90 degree increments, and Figure 2.12, where the

samewavelet has been shifted by 30 degree increments.

Notice that the 90

degree rotation

180 degree shift

displays perfect antisnmnetry, whereas a

simply inverts the wavelet.

Part

2 - The Convolutional

The 30 degree rotations are asymetric.

Model

Page 2-

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Introduction to Seismic Inversion Methods

Brian Russell

Fig.

2.9.

20 Hz Ricker

Wavelet'.

Fig.

.10.

40 Hz Ricker

wavelet.

Fig.

2.11.

Ricker

wavelet

rotated

by 90 degree increments

Fig.

2.12.

Ricker

wavelet

rotated

by 30 degree increments

Part

2 - The Convolutional

Model

Page 2 -

13

Introduction

to Seismic

Of course,

Inversion

a typical

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frequencies than that

filer

Methods

seismic wavelet

shownin Figure 2.13,

would be noticeable

a larger

Consider the

range of
banapass

where we have passed a banaof frequencies


has also had cosine tapers applied between 5

and 15 Hz, and between60 and 80 Hz.


box-car.

contains

shownon the Ricker wavelet.

between15 and 60 Hz. The filter

that

Brian Russell

The taper reduces the "ringing" effect

if the wavelet amplitude spectrum was a

The wavelet of Figure 2.13 is

simple

zero-phase, and would be excellent as

a stratigraphic wavelet. It is often referred to as an Ormsbywavelet.


Minimum Phase Wavelets

The concept of minimum-phaseis one that

is

vital

to aleconvolution, but

is also a concept that is poorly understood.

The reason for

understanding is that most discussions of

concept stress the mathematics

at

the

expense of

the

physical

the

interpretation.

use of minimum-phaseis adapted from Treitel

The

this lack of

definition

we

and Robinson (1966):

For a given set of wavelets, all with the sameamplitude spectrum,

the minimum-phase
waveletis the onewhichhasthe sharpest
leading
edge. That is, only wavelets which have positive

The reason that

time values.

minimum-phase concept is important to us is

that

typical wavelet in dynamite work is close to minimum-phase. Also, the wavelet


from the

seismic instruments

equivalent of the 5/15-60/80

in the aefinition

is

also

zero-phase wavelet is shownin Figure 2.14.

Part

As

used, notice that the minimum-phasewavelet has no component

prior to time zero and has its energy

possible.

minimum-phase. The minimum-phase

concentrated

as close to the origin

as

The phase spectrum of the minimum-waveletis also shown.

2 - The Convolutional

Model

Pa.qe 2 -

14

Itroducton to Seistoic!nversionNethods.
ql

Re R

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f1.38

Zero Phase Iauelt

5/15-68Y88

0.6

- e.3e

Trace

iii

...... ,

.....

'

2be
Trace

Reg 1)

BranRussell

min,l

wavelet

Fig.

2.13. Zero-phase bandpass

Fig.

2.14. Minim-phase equivalent


of zero-phase wavelet
shownin Fig. 2.13.

wavelet.

/15-68/88 hz

18.00 p

Trace I

RegE

wayel

Speetnm

'188.88

Trace1

0.8

188

m,m,

Part 2 -Th 'e Convolutional Model

Page 2-

15

Introduction

to Seismic Inversion Methods

Brian Russell

Let us nowlook at the effect of different waveletson the reflectivity


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function itself.

Figure 2.15 a anU b shows a numberof different

conv6lved with the reflectivity


in Figure Z.5.

(Trace 1) from the simple blocky model shown

The following wavelets have been used- high frequency

zero-phase (Trace ),

low frequencyzero-phase(Trace ), high frequency

minimumphase (Trace 3),


figure,

wavelets

low frequency minimum phase (Trace 5).

From the

we can make the fol 1owing observations:

(1) Low freq. zero-phase wavelet:


- Resolution of reflections

- Identification

(Trace 4)
is poor.

of onset of reflection

is good.

(Z) High freq. zero-phase wavelet: (Trace Z)


- Resolution of reflections

- Identification

is good.

of onset of reflection

is good.

(3) Lowfreq. min. pase wavelet- (Trace 5)


- Resolution

of reflections

i s poor.

- Identification of onset of reflection is poor.


(4) High freq. min. phase wavelet: (Trace 3)
- Resolution of refl ec tions is good.

- Identification

of onset of reflection

is poor.

Based on the aboveobservations, we wouldhave to consider the high

frequency,zero-phase
waveletthe best, andthe low-frequency,
minimum
phase
wavelet

Part

the

worst.

2 - The Convolutional

Model

Page 2 -

16

Introduction

!ql

RegR

to Seismic Inversion

Zer PhaseUaelet

,'1G-1

Methods

14z

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Russell

q2 RegC ZeroPhase
14aue16('
' 'le-34B Hz
e

- . ['

Brian

'

,3 RecjB miniilium
phue

'

q Reg1) 'minimum
phase "

'

,leJ3e/4eh

'

17 .

e.e

(a)

//'-"v--,._,,
-r

e.' ' "se''


,m

,,

Tr'oce

[b)
700

Fig.

2.15.

Convolution of four different


in (a) with trace I of (b).
shown on traces

Part

2 - The Convolutional

Model

wavelets shown
The results are

2 to 5 of (b).

Page 2 -

17

Introduction

to Seismic Inversion

Methods

Brian Russell

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g.4 ThN.oi se.Co.mp.one


ntThe situation

that has been discussed so far is the ideal case.

That is,

we have interpreted every reflection wavelet on a seismic trace as being an


actual

reflection

from a

lithological

boundary.

Actually,

many of the

"wiggles"on a trace are not true reflections, but are actually the result
seismic noise.

of

Seismic noise can be grouped under two categories-

(i) Random
Noise - noise which is uncorrelated from trace to trace and is
ue mainly to environmental factors.

(ii)

CoherentNoise - noise which is predictable on the seismic trace but

is unwanted. An exampleis multiple reflection interference.


Randomnoise can be thought of as the additive componentn(t) which was

seen in the equationon page 2-g.


Correcting for this term is the primary
reason for stackingour ata. Stackingactually uoesan excellent job of
removing ranUomnoise.

Multiples, one of the major sources of coherent noise, are causedby


multiple "bounces"
of the seismic signal within the earth, as shownin Figure
2.16. They may be straightforward, as in multiple seafloor bouncesor
"ringing", or extremelycomplex,as typified by interbed multiples. Multiples
cannot be thoughtof as additive noise andmustbe modeledas a convolution
with the reflecti

vi ty.

Figure 2.17

shows the

theoretical

multiple

sequence which

generatedby the simple blocky modelshown on Figure . 5.


this

data,

it

is

Multiples maybe partially

powerful

the

multiples

be

removed by

stacking,

but

important that

elimination

technique.

aleconvolution, f-k filter.ing,

Such

techniques

and inverse velocity

If

we are

effectively

would
to

be

invert

removed.

often require a more


include

stacking.

predictive

These techniques

wil 1 be consi alered in Part 4.

Part

2 - The Convolutional

Model

Page 2 -

18

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Introduction to Seismic Inversion Methods

Fig.

2.16. Several multiple generating mechanisms.

TIME

TIME

[sec)

[sec)

0.7

REFLECTION
COEFFICIENT

SERIES

Fig.

Brian Russell

2.17.

0.7

R.C.S.
WITH

ALL

MULTIPLES

Reflectivi ty sequenceof Fig.

2.5.

with

and without multipl es.

Part 2 - The ConvolutionalModel

Page 2 -

19