Exploration Geophysics Exploration Geophysics Society
Journal of the Australian Society of Exploration Geophysicists
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Traveltimes and conversion-point positions for P-SV converted wave propagation in a transversely isotropic medium: numerical calculations and physical model studies

Po-Yen Tseng 1 Young-Fo Chang 1 3 Chih-Hsiung Chang 2 Ruey-Chyuan Shih 1
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

1 Institute of Seismology, National Chung Cheng University, Chiayi 62102, Taiwan.

2 General Education Center, and Center of Energy Research and Sensor Technology, National Chiayi University, Chiayi 62103, Taiwan.

3 Corresponding author. Email: seichyo@ccu.edu.tw

Exploration Geophysics - https://doi.org/10.1071/EG15123
Submitted: 30 November 2015  Accepted: 26 August 2016   Published online: 14 October 2016

Abstract

This study uses ultrasonic physical modelling to test the accuracies of numerical calculations of traveltimes and conversion-point (CP) positions for P-SV wave propagation in a horizontal transversely isotropic (TI) medium. Study results show that the traveltimes and CP positions for P-SV wave propagation on the isotropic plane of a TI medium computed using Fermat’s minimum-time principle are the same as those of using the isotropic non-hyperbolic moveout equation and the isotropic CP equation. However, for P-SV wave propagation on the symmetry-axis plane of a TI medium, the arrival times and CP positions of SV-waves are difficult to determine by any ray methods when the propagation directions of SV-waves are within the cuspoidal SV-wave group velocities zone. But the first arrival times and the propagation of the dominant energy of P-SV waves can still be analysed by ray methods. Based on the calculation of Fermat’s minimum-time principle, if the source-receiver offset is greater than a critical distance, the reflection angles of the converted SV-waves are fixed at a specific angle with a local maximum SV-wave group velocity of the neighbourhood area. This is because the converted SV-waves prefer to propagate along the cuspoidal directions with larger amplitude and higher velocity. Verified by the physical modelling, the Fermat’s minimum-time principle used to calculate traveltimes of P-SV waves is better than the anisotropic non-hyperbolic moveout equation. The physical modelling for the CP position experiment can give a clearer visualisation of the variations of CP positions in the profile, and the feasibility of using Fermat’s minimum-time principle to determine CP positions is also better than that of the anisotropic CP equations. Therefore, in the seismic data processing, Fermat’s minimum-time method is recommended to accurately determine the arrival times and CP positions of P-SV wave propagation in TI media.

Key words: conversion-point, P-SV converted wave, transversely isotropic medium.


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