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Authors: Vassallo, M.* 
Zollo, A.* 
Title: Morphology and depth of seismic reflectors from 2D non-linear inversion of reflected arrival times and waveforms. Part I: Application to synthetic data computed in a complex volcanic structure
Issue Date: Apr-2008
Series/Report no.: /56(2008)
DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2478.2008.00694.x
Keywords: non-linear method
reflected/ converted traveltimes
Subject Classification04. Solid Earth::04.02. Exploration geophysics::04.02.06. Seismic methods 
Abstract: We propose a two-dimensional, non-linear method for the inversion of reflected/ converted traveltimes and waveform semblance designed to obtain the location and morphology of seismic reflectors in a lateral heterogeneous medium and in any source-to-receiver acquisition lay-out. This method uses a scheme of non-linear optimization for the determination of the interface parameters where the calculation of the traveltimes is carried out using a finite-difference solver of the Eikonal equation, assuming an a priori known background velocity model. For the search for the optimal interface model, we used a multiscale approach and the genetic algorithm global optimization technique. During the initial stages of inversion, we used the arrival times of the reflection phase to retrieve the interface model that is defined by a small number of parameters. In the successive steps, the inversion is based on the optimization of the semblance value determined along the calculated traveltime curves. Errors in the final model parameters and the criteria for the choice of the best-fit model are also estimated from the shape of the semblance function in the model parameter space. The method is tested and validated on a synthetic dataset that simulates the acquisition of reflection data in a complex volcanic structure. This study shows that the proposed inversion approach is a valid tool for geophysical investigations in complex geological environments, in order to obtain the morphology and positions of embedded discontinuities.
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