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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/se-2019-44
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/se-2019-44
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 13 Mar 2019

Research article | 13 Mar 2019

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This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Solid Earth (SE).

Anisotropic P-wave traveltime tomography implementing Thomsen's weak approximation in TOMO3D

Adrià Meléndez1, Clara Estela Jiménez1, Valentí Sallarès1, and César R. Ranero2 Adrià Meléndez et al.
  • 1Barcelona Center for Subsurface Imaging, Institut de Ciències del Mar (CSIC), Barcelona, 08003, Spain
  • 2Barcelona Center for Subsurface Imaging, ICREA at Institut de Ciències del Mar (CSIC), Barcelona, 08003, Spain

Abstract. We present the implementation of Thomsen's weak anisotropy approximation for VTI media within TOMO3D, our code for 2-D and 3-D joint refraction and reflection traveltime tomographic inversion. In addition to the inversion of seismic P-wave velocity and reflector depth, the code can now retrieve models of the Thomsen's parameters δ and ε. Here we test this new implementation following four different strategies on a canonical synthetic experiment. First, we study the sensitivity of traveltimes to the presence of a 25 % anomaly in each of the parameters. Next, we invert for two combinations of parameters, (v, δ, ε) and (v, δ, v), following two inversion strategies, simultaneous and sequential, and compare the results to study their performances and discuss their advantages and disadvantages. Simultaneous inversion is the preferred strategy and the parameter combination (v, δ, ε) produces the best overall results. The only advantage of the parameter combination (v, δ, v) is a better recovery of the magnitude of v. In each case we derive the fourth parameter from the equation relating ε, v and v. Recovery of v, ε and v is satisfactory whereas δ proves to be impossible to recover even in the most favorable scenario. However, this does not hinder the recovery of the other parameters, and we show that it is still possible to obtain a rough approximation of δ distribution in the medium by sampling a reasonable range of homogeneous initial δ models and averaging the final δ models that are satisfactory in terms of data fit.

Adrià Meléndez et al.
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Short summary
A new code for anisotropic traveltime tomography is presented. We describe the equations governing the anisotropic ray propagation algorithm and the modified inversion solver. We study the sensitivity of two medium parametrizations and compare four inversion strategies on a canonical model. This code can provide better understanding of the Earth's subsurface in the rather common geological contexts in which seismic velocity displays a weak dependency on the polar angle of ray propagation.
A new code for anisotropic traveltime tomography is presented. We describe the equations...
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