Frequency dependence of anisotropy in fluid saturated rocks – Part II: Stress-induced anisotropy case

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Abstract

A major cause of attenuation in fluid-saturated media is the local fluid flow (or squirt flow) induced by a passing wave between pores of different shapes and sizes. Several squirt flow models have been derived for isotropic media. For anisotropic media, however, most of the existing squirt flow models only provide the low- and high-frequency limits of the saturated elastic properties. We develop a new squirt flow model to account for the frequency dependence of elastic properties and thus gain some insight into velocity dispersion and attenuation in anisotropic media. In a companion paper, we focused on media containing aligned compliant pores embedded in an isotropic background matrix. In this paper, we investigate the case for which anisotropy results from the presence of cracks with an ellipsoidal distribution of orientations due to the application of anisotropic stress. The low- and high-frequency limits of the predicted fluid-saturated elastic properties are respectively consistent with Gassmann theory and Mukerji–Mavko squirt flow model. In the most important case of liquid saturation, analytical expressions are derived for elastic properties and Thomsen anisotropy parameters. The main observations drawn from this model are as follows. Crack closure perpendicular to the applied stress leads to an increase in seismic velocities as a function of stress in the direction of applied stress and a decrease in squirt-flow-induced dispersion and attenuation in this direction. The anisotropy of squirt flow dispersion engenders a decrease in the degree of anisotropy with frequency. The stress-induced anisotropy remains elliptical, even in saturated media, for all frequency ranges.

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