Paper Summary

Seismic data acquired with an airgun source and recorded on pressure sensors has been the standard for offshore oil and gas exploration for many years. One problem with this type of data is that, for various reasons, its useable bandwidth is limited to approximately 70 Hz (bandwidth is defined as the difference between the upper and lower frequencies in a continuous set of frequencies). There are many reasons why it is desirable to utilise data with an increased bandwidth (e.g. upward of 150 Hz) for E&P purposes. Such ‘broadband’ seismic data has many advantages over conventional marine streamer data. However, numerous obstacles must be overcome before broadband data can be utilised for E&P objectives. In this article, the principal mechanisms for the limitation of bandwidth in marine seismic data are reviewed, before moving on to look at the ways in which the industry has responded to the challenge of providing broadband data. Finally, the article will focus on a process that delivers broadband data from conventional streamer seismic.