High-resolution shear-wave reflection profiling to image offset in unconsolidated near-surface sediments

by Bevin Bailey

Institution: University of Kansas
Department: Geology
Degree: MS
Year: 2014
Keywords: Geophysics
Record ID: 2025418
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1808/14561


S-wave reflection profiling has many theoretical advantages, when compared to P-wave profiling, such as high-resolution potential, greater sensitivities to lithologic changes and insensitivity to the water table and pore fluids, and could be particularly useful in near-surface settings. However, S-wave surveys can be plagued by processing pitfalls unique to near-surface studies such as interference of Love waves with reflections, and the stacking of Love waves as coherent noise, leading to possible misinterpretations of the subsurface. Two lines of S-wave data are processed and used to locate previously unknown faults in Quaternary sediments in a region where earthquake activity poses a threat to surface structures. This study provides clear examples of processing pitfalls such as Love waves with hyperbolic appearances on shot gathers, and a CMP section with coherent noise that is easily misinterpreted as reflections. This study demonstrates pros and cons of using SH reflection data in the near surface.