pure and applied geophysics

, Volume 148, Issue 3–4, pp 481–502 | Cite as

Wave front construction in smooth media for prestack depth migration

  • N. Ettrich
  • D. Gajewski


We implemented a wave front construction algorithm specifically designed for smooth media for application to prestack depth migration. The highest priority was given to maximum computational speed to allow an extension of the techniques to 3D media. A simple grid-based model representation in combination with fast bilinear interpolation is used. It is shown that this procedure has no distorting effects on the ray tracing results for smooth media. In our implementation, wave front construction (WFC) has proven to be as fast as some of the recently developed methods for travel time computations. WFC has advantages over these methods, since amplitudes and other ray theoretical quantities are available, and it is not restricted to the calculation of only first arrivals. Thus, it meets the requirements for migration in complex media. Furthermore, WFC allows for introduction of a perturbation scheme for computing travel times for slightly varying models simultaneously. This has applications for, e.g., prestack velocity estimation techniques. The importance of later arrivals for migration in complex media is demonstrated by prestack images of the Marmousi data set.

Key words

Kirchhoff migration ray tracing wave front construction perturbation 


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Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • N. Ettrich
    • 1
  • D. Gajewski
    • 1
  1. 1.Geophys. Inst.Univ. HamburgHamburgGermany

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