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Diffraction imaging of the Eagle Ford shaleGreen Open Access

Authors: I. Sturzu, A.M. Popovici, M.A. Pelissier, J.M. Wolak and T.J. Moser
Journal name: First Break
Issue: Vol 32, No 11, November 2014 pp. 49 - 59
DOI: 10.3997/1365-2397.2014016
Language: English
Info: Article, PDF ( 2.47Mb )

Diffraction imaging is a novel technology that uses diffractions to image very small subsurface elements. Diffraction imaging may: (1) improve prospect characterization and pre-drill assessment of the local geology; (2) improve production and recovery efficiency; (3) reduce field development cost; and (4) decrease environmental impact. Field development may be accomplished with fewer wells to optimally produce the reservoir using high-resolution images of small-scale fractures in shale or carbonate intervals. Standard approaches to obtain high-resolution information, such as coherency analysis and structure-oriented filters, derive attributes from stacked, migrated images. Diffraction imaging, in comparison, acts on the pre-stack data, and has the potential to focus super-resolution structural information. Diffraction images can be used as a complement to the structural images produced by conventional reflection imaging techniques, by emphasizing small-scale structural elements that are difficult to interpret on a conventional depth image. An efficient way to obtain diffraction images is to first separate the migration events according to the value of the specularity angle, in a similar way to offset gathers, and subsequent post-stack processing. The high-resolution potential is demonstrated by the diffraction images from the Kenedy 3D survey over the Eagle Ford shale, which show much more detail than conventional depth migration or coherence.

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