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Anisotropic Q and velocity dispersion of finely layered mediaNormal access

Author: José M. Carcione
Journal name: Geophysical Prospecting
Issue: Vol 40, No 7, October 1992 pp. 761 - 783
DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2478.1992.tb00551.x
Organisations: Wiley
Language: English
Info: Article, PDF ( 1.02Mb )

Summary:
When a seismic signal propagates through a finely layered medium, there is anisotropy if the wavelengths are long enough compared to the layer thicknesses. It is well known that in this situation, the medium is equivalent to a transversely isotropic material. In addition to anisotropy, the layers may show intrinsic anelastic behaviour. Under these circumstances, the layered medium exhibits Q anisotropy and anisotropic velocity dispersion.

The present work investigates the anelastic effect in the long-wavelength approximation. Backus's theory and the standard linear solid rheology are used as models to obtain the directional properties of anelasticity corresponding to the quasi-compressional mode qP, the quasi-shear mode qSV, and the pure shear mode SH, respectively. The medium is described by a complex and frequency-dependent stiffness matrix. The complex and phase velocities for homogeneous viscoelastic waves are calculated from the Christoffel equation, while the wave-fronts (energy velocities) and quality factor surfaces are obtained from energy considerations by invoking Poynting's theorem.

We consider two-constituent stationary layered media, and study the wave characteristics for different material compositions and proportions. Analyses on sequences of sandstone-limestone and shale-limestone with different degrees of anisotropy indicate that the quality factors of the shear modes are more anisotropic than the corresponding phase velocities, cusps of the qSV mode are more pronounced for low frequencies and midrange proportions, and in general, attenuation is higher in the direction perpendicular to layering or close to it, provided that the material with lower velocity is the more dissipative. A numerical simulation experiment verifies the attenuation properties of finely layered media through comparison of elastic and anelastic snapshots.


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