Paper Summary

Wide azimuth seismic surveying is firmly established as a key element in subsalt exploration and production in the Gulf of Mexico. The challenge now facing the industry is to further improve subsalt images in areas with existing wide azimuth coverage. Orthogonal wide azimuth acquisition, acquiring a second wide azimuth dataset over existing wide azimuth data, is a technique that provides close to full azimuth coverage while utilizing existing wide azimuth data. A case study performed in the Gulf of Mexico demonstrates that the increased source and receiver illumination created by orthogonal wide azimuth surveys significantly improves imaging results and increases the effectiveness of the tomography and salt interpretation steps.