Source-independent waveform inversion for attenuation estimation in anisotropic media
T. Bai and I Tsvankin
Journal name: Geophysical Prospecting
Issue: Vol 67, No 9, November 2019 pp. 2343 - 2357
Info: Article, PDF ( 3.92Mb )
In previous publications, we presented a waveform-inversion algorithm for attenuation analysis in heterogeneous anisotropic media. However, waveform inversion requires an accurate estimate of the source wavelet, which is often difficult to obtain from field data. To address this problem, here we adopt a source-independent waveform-inversion algorithm that obviates the need for joint estimation of the source signal and attenuation coefficients. The key operations in that algorithm are the convolutions (1) of the observed wavefield with a reference trace from the modelled data and (2) of the modelled wavefield with a reference trace from the observed data. The influence of the source signature on attenuation estimation is mitigated by defining the objective function as the 2-norm of the difference between the two convolved data sets. The inversion gradients for the medium parameters are similar to those for conventional waveform-inversion techniques, with the exception of the adjoint sources computed by convolution and cross-correlation operations. To make the source-independent inversion methodology more stable in the presence of velocity errors, we combine it with the local-similarity technique. The proposed algorithm is validated using transmission tests for a homogeneous transversely isotropic model with a vertical symmetry axis that contains a Gaussian anomaly in the shear-wave vertical attenuation coefficient. Then the method is applied to the inversion of reflection data for a modified transversely isotropic model from Hess. It should be noted that due to the increased nonlinearity of the inverse problem, the source-independent algorithm requires a more accurate initial model to obtain inversion results comparable to those produced by conventional waveform inversion with the actual wavelet.