University of Texas at Austin

Exploration Geophysics Laboratory

Seismic Vector-Wavefield Characterization of Complex Reservoirs

The Exploration Geophysics Laboratory (EGL) was established in 1997 to develop seismic vector-wavefield technology for improved reservoir characterization and prospect evaluation.

The EGL develops a wide range of technologies, including seismic field-recording techniques and data-processing and data-interpretation procedures, to image reservoirs using all components of the seismic wavefield. The goal is to determine the value and applications of independent compressional-wave (P-wave) and shear-wave (S-wave) images of stratigraphic systems. When P and S images are combined, investigators gain more insight into petrophysical rock properties, pore structure, pore-fluid properties, sequence-stratigraphic relationships, spatial distributions of lithologies, fracture distributions, and anisotropic properties of complex reservoirs than when only one seismic mode is used to study these problems

Joint studies with industry sponsors give EGL access to onshore multicomponent seismic data and multicomponent marine data. EGL focuses on developing case histories and data examples that illustrate applications of multicomponent seismic technology. For example, EGL has demonstrated that four-component ocean-bottom-cable (4-C OBC) seismic data improve the understanding and characterization of gas-hydrate systems across the northern Gulf of Mexico because converted-SV waves can image the internal architecture of deep-water, near-seafloor strata with a better resolution than P waves.

Becoming an EGL Associate

Sponsors pay $50,000 per year. Late entrants pay an additional $15,000 fee to gain access to the research findings that have been amassed since the conception of the program. Some late entrants have joined the consortium by providing appropriate in-kind donations of data and other research resources in lieu of paying the $50,000 entry fee. Equipment manufacturers and software companies can participate by donating appropriate resources to the program rather than providing financial support.

Dr. Bob A. Hardage
For more information about The Exploration Geophysics Laboratory, please contact Bob Hardage.
Telephone: 512-471-0300