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System and method for investigating sub-surface features of a rock formation using compressional acoustic sources

United States Patent

September 27, 2016
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Los Alamos National Laboratory - Visit the Technology Transfer Division Website
A system and method for investigating rock formations outside a borehole are provided. The method includes generating a first compressional acoustic wave at a first frequency by a first acoustic source; and generating a second compressional acoustic wave at a second frequency by a second acoustic source. The first and the second acoustic sources are arranged within a localized area of the borehole. The first and the second acoustic waves intersect in an intersection volume outside the borehole. The method further includes receiving a third shear acoustic wave at a third frequency, the third shear acoustic wave returning to the borehole due to a non-linear mixing process in a non-linear mixing zone within the intersection volume at a receiver arranged in the borehole. The third frequency is equal to a difference between the first frequency and the second frequency.
Vu; Cung Khac (Houston, TX), Skelt; Christopher (Houston, TX), Nihei; Kurt (Oakland, CA), Johnson; Paul A. (Santa Fe, NM), Guyer; Robert (Reno, NV), Ten Cate; James A. (Los Alamos, NM), Le Bas; Pierre-Yves (Los Alamos, NM), Larmat; Carene S. (Los Alamos, NM)
Chevron U.S.A. Inc. (San Ramon, CA), Los Alamos National Security LLC (Los Alamos, NM)
13/ 292,908
November 9, 2011
GOVERNMENT RIGHTS This invention was made with Government support under Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) Contract Number DE-AC52-06NA25396 awarded by the United States Department of Energy. The Government may have certain rights in this invention.