Processing strategy for water-gun seismic data from the Gulf of Mexico

Bulletin 2181

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In order to study the regional distribution of gas hydrates and their potential relationship to a large-scale sea-fl oor failures, more than 1,300 km of near-vertical-incidence seismic profi les were acquired using a 15-in3 water gun across the upper- and middle-continental slope in the Garden Banks and Green Canyon regions of the Gulf of Mexico. Because of the highly mixed phase water-gun signature, caused mainly by a precursor of the source arriving about 18 ms ahead of the main pulse, a conventional processing scheme based on the minimum phase assumption is not suitable for this data set. A conventional processing scheme suppresses the reverberations and compresses the main pulse, but the failure to suppress precursors results in complex interference between the precursors and primary refl ections, thus obscuring true refl ections. To clearly image the subsurface without interference from the precursors, a wavelet deconvolution based on the mixedphase assumption using variable norm is attempted. This nonminimum- phase wavelet deconvolution compresses a longwave- train water-gun signature into a simple zero-phase wavelet. A second-zero-crossing predictive deconvolution followed by a wavelet deconvolution suppressed variable ghost arrivals attributed to the variable depths of receivers. The processing strategy of using wavelet deconvolution followed by a secondzero- crossing deconvolution resulted in a sharp and simple wavelet and a better defi nition of the polarity of refl ections. Also, the application of dip moveout correction enhanced lateral resolution of refl ections and substantially suppressed coherent noise.

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USGS Numbered Series
Processing strategy for water-gun seismic data from the Gulf of Mexico
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Version 1.1
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U.S. Dept. of the Interior, U.S. Geological Sursvey,
12 p.