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Published as Geophysics, 76, T123-T129, (2011)

Fourier finite-difference wave propagation

Xiaolei Song and Sergey Fomel
Bureau of Economic Geology
John A. and Katherine G. Jackson School of Geosciences
The University of Texas at Austin
University Station, Box X
Austin, TX 78713-8924


We introduce a novel technique for seismic wave extrapolation in time. The technique involves cascading a Fourier Transform operator and a finite difference operator to form a chain operator: Fourier Finite Differences (FFD). We derive the FFD operator from a pseudo-analytical solution of the acoustic wave equation. 2-D synthetic examples demonstrate that the FFD operator can have high accuracy and stability in complex velocity media. Applying the FFD method to the anisotropic case overcomes some disadvantages of other methods, such as the coupling of qP-waves and qSV-waves. The FFD method can be applied to enhance accuracy and stability of seismic imaging by reverse-time migration.