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2019/20 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

SOEE5166M Seismic Data Processing

15 creditsClass Size: 40

Module manager: Dr Roger Clark

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2019/20

Pre-requisite qualifications

Course entrance pre-requisites

Module replaces


This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

In this module, students will learn principles and practice of processing surface-seismic reflection and vertical-seismic-profile (VSP) data.


To review the methods used to process surface-seismic reflection data from raw data through to final seismic sections, and VSP data from raw data to corridor-stacks; to understand the physical principles that underlie these methods and how they are applied.

To reinforce and apply the knowledge of surface-seismic reflection and VSP data processing, by processing synthetic and/or real ('legacy') data over an extractive-industry target, using industry-standard (e.g. SeisSpace/ProMAX™) software tools.

Learning outcomes
After completing this module, students will be able to: 
- understand the theory and principles behind surface-seismic reflection and VSP data processing; 
- have a practical understanding of, and be able to apply, processing tools to 2D seismic reflection lines and to a VSP to a credible professional standard; then to be able to report on and document the work, also at a credible professional standard. 
 Learning outcomes will be assessed using practical exercises, an independent processing report, and an unseen exam.


Surface-seismic reflection processing: processing overview, subjectivity and evolution of processing outcomes. Data formats, QC editing, amplitude scaling, binning to CMPs. Field static corrections for land and marine data. Deconvolution (deterministic and statistical: wavelet shaping, de-ghosting and de-signature, predictive deconvolution). Signal-to-noise improvement by single and multi-trace filtering (bandpass, median, FK-, and Radon: other de-noise tools). Velocity analysis (CVG, CVS, semblance, NMO stretching and muting, spread-length bias, higher-order and anisotropic velocity analysis). Residual statics. Stacking tools, angle gathers, post stack enhancement and display options. Multiple suppression (FK, Radon-domain, SRME). Migration: principles, DMO, methods (impulse responses, aperture; Kirchhoff/ray- and WEM-based methods, incl. RTM. Stolt FK). Post and pre-stack, time and depth methods: resolution effects. Velocity updating tools (parametric, subsurface offset, tomographic, FWI). Special processing tasks: time-lapse (4D) and converted-wave (PS) surveys.

Vertical seismic profile (VSP) processing: signal and noise types and characteristics, wavefield separation, corridor stacks, VSP-CDP migration, direct property measurement. Illustrative and investigative application of parts of the above, using industry-standard software package(s).

Teaching methods

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours98.00
Total Contact hours52.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)150.00

Private study

Completion of practicals and assessments, computer exercises, literature search, reading text books, and revision for examination.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Assessment and feedback during practicals.

Methods of assessment

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
ReportProject Report40.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)40.00

Resit by examination only (see below)

Exam typeExam duration% of formal assessment
Standard exam (closed essays, MCQs etc)2 hr 00 mins60.00
Total percentage (Assessment Exams)60.00

A student who fails this Module may be offered a resit. The resit mark provides a new alternative mark for the whole Module. The re-sit for this module will be a single unseen examination, of duration 2 hours, covering the same content, and of the same format, as the first-attempt examination.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 19/09/2018


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