Methods for determining the existence and characteristics of a gradational pressurized zone within a subterranean formation are disclosed. One embodiment involves employing an attenuation relationship between a seismic response signal and increasing wavelet wavelength, which relationship may be used to detect a gradational pressurized zone and/or determine characteristics thereof. In another embodiment, a method for analyzing data contained within a response signal for signal characteristics that may change in relation to the distance between an input signal source and the gradational pressurized zone is disclosed. In a further embodiment, the relationship between response signal wavelet frequency and comparative amplitude may be used to estimate an optimal wavelet wavelength or range of wavelengths used for data processing or input signal selection. Systems for seismic exploration and data analysis for practicing the above-mentioned method embodiments are also disclosed.
The United States Government has rights in the following invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-AC07-99ID13727, and Contract No. DE-AC07-05-ID14517 between the U.S. Department of Energy and Battelle Energy Alliance, LLC.