Seismic inversion can be an incredibly useful tool for geologists, helping them to accurately model the subsurface of the Earth based on seismic surveys of the surface. However, seismic inversion also has many other hidden benefits that can be helpful to anyone who uses it, not just geologists. If you’re interested in learning more about what seismic inversion can do for you, check out this article!
How is seismic inversion used?
There are two main uses for seismic inversion software. One is to find large pockets of oil and gas where traditional techniques have proven useless. While there is no guarantee that these hidden deposits will actually produce oil or gas, seismic inversion can detect them at a much higher rate than existing methods. The other use is to model underground features for construction purposes, such as skyscrapers or subway tunnels. By building up a three-dimensional picture of what’s underfoot before you start digging, you can minimize costs by drilling only where it’s absolutely necessary and prevent damage to whatever underground elements you might hit.
Why do we need seismic inversion?
Seismic inversion is a technique used to convert seismic reflection data into information about geologic layers and properties. You may wonder, Why do we need seismic inversion? When we acquire seismic reflection data (which is like sonar for Earth’s surface), we want to map out geologic features such as faults and hydrocarbon reservoirs. We can then drill into those features and extract valuable resources. There are two main challenges with converting seismic reflection data into information about geologic layers: first, each layer may reflect differently off of interfaces (the boundaries between layers). The second challenge involves getting multiple reflections to line up correctly. Seismic inversion is a tool that helps us overcome these challenges, allowing us to build 3D images from our 2D seismic data.
Can we still use seismic data without using any type of seismic inversion?
One big advantage of seismic data is that it’s not affected by many external factors, so it can provide high-quality images even in areas with challenging environments. However, seismic data alone cannot tell us which layers lie beneath each point on our images. This means we can’t create accurate models without using tools like seismic inversion. So how do we use data if we don’t have any type of inversion? We can still make a model by combining seismic and other types of geophysical data. Sometimes, a little help from gravity or magnetics goes a long way! When other datasets are available to complement our seismic results, they can give us crucial information about reservoir properties that might otherwise remain unknown.
Using geophysical data to model rock layers underneath your oilfield is a crucial step for understanding what’s happening underground. This can be done through multiple methods, but perhaps none are as popular or useful as seismic inversion.