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New Developments in Use of Image Processing for Integrated Geological and Geophysical Data Evaluation

Palle F. Miller

Interactive workstations for seismic interpretation and mapping have been available for several years. Geological interpretation and display systems have also been available, but separate from the seismic interpretation workstation. The need for integrated geological and geophysical systems is now greater than ever. The limits between the geologist's and geophysicist's work is overlapping more and more. The title "explorationist" would nowadays be more characteristic.

In this paper, a system for integrated geological and geophysical interpretation and presentation using image processing will be presented. Integration of well data such as VSP, synthetic seismograms, electric logs, and stratigraphic logs with seismic data is important for the best correlation between wells and seismic. Composite displays and data bases present a unique way of doing this using an image processor.

Seismic interpretation is often based on a previously defined geological model; therefore, it is important to be able to compare seismic interpretation with the geological model and vice versa. A new method of using image processing in depth conversion on either a single seismic line or on a map using a flexible velocity field will present the explorationist with instant ways to verify the interpretation.

Once an interpretation is performed, the interpreted horizons can be used as input to a geophysical 3D seismic modeling concept. The user can input survey parameters as they were used during acquisition to produce synthetic seismograms and compare results with existing seismic data. When depth conversion parameters are established, the image processor performs this within seconds, and the final depth map is presented to the explorationist.

Quality checks are important. Image-processed composite displays of depth-converted seismic sections and well logs are used for this purpose. Production of isopach maps and volumetric calculations is presented along with high-quality automatic contoured maps. The presentation of a final interpretation product is just as important, and several image processed displays such as isometric using a high-resolution hard copy unit are presented.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91038©1987 AAPG Annual Convention, Los Angeles, California, June 7-10, 1987.