Mostafa Naghizadeh

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Mostafa Naghizadeh
Mostafa Naghizadeh headshot.png
PhD university University of Alberta

Mostafa Naghizadeh received his PhD from the University of Alberta in 2009. He has received CSPG’s 2009 Andrew D. Baillie Award for Best Student Oral Presentation, the CSPG/CSEG/ CWLS 2008 Best Student Geophysical Oral Paper Award, the SEG 2008 Best Student Poster Award, the CSPG/CSEG 2007 Best Student Geophysical Paper Award, and CSPG/CSEG/ CWLS 2006 Honorable Mention for Best Student Paper. His principal impact to date has been in extending f-x interpolation to irregularly spaced data and using the curvelet transform to reconstruct aliased data. Over the course of his PhD studies at the Signal Analysis and Imaging Group of the University of Alberta, Mostafa combined classical signal processing, statistical data analysis, signal estimation theory, and modern concepts in harmonic analysis to develop robust and eff cient methods for the reconstruction of multidimensional seismic wavefi elds. He has published seven papers in GEOPHYSICS, one in THE LEADING EDGE, and eight expanded abstracts. He is fi rst author on 13 of these publications. In January 2010, he joined the Department of Geosciences at the University of Calgary as a postdoctoral fellow with the CREWES group.

Biography Citation for the J. Clarence Karcher Award

Contributed by Mauricio D. Sacchi

Mostafa Naghizadeh, a native of Iran, received a BSc from Shahid Bahonar University of Kerman in 2000 and an MSc from the Institute for Geophysics at the University of Tehran in 2003. In January 2005, he arrived at the University of Alberta to begin pursuit of a PhD in applied seismology. From the very fi rst day, he excelled at addressing signal processing problems and was instrumental in developing leading-edge methods for signal reconstruction at the Signal Analysis and Imaging Group. Mostafa brought the group and its sponsors to a high level of understanding of the theory of multidimensional seismic wavefi eld reconstruction.

Mostafa has developed new algorithms for reconstructing regularly and irregularly sampled and aliased seismic data, important because many algorithms rely on regularly sampled (nonaliased) wavefi elds. Mostafa’s fi rst contribution was described in GEOPHYSICS in 2007 in “Multistep autoregressive reconstruction (MSAR) of seismic records” which extends f-x interpolation to irregularly sampled data.

A subsequent article in Geophysical Prospecting uses MSAR to process multidimensional data, permitting regularization of prestack data that depend on fi ve dimensions (time or frequency and four spatial coordinates). Mostafa also introduced a recursive algorithm for f-x interpolation to reconstruct aliased data in the presence of strong lateral variations of dip (published in GEOPHYSICS in 2009 as “F-x adaptive seismic-trace interpolation”). This article is a good example of Mostafa’s deep understanding of classical signal processing methods and their application to seismic processing.

Mostafa has elegantly showed that the curvelet transform could be used to reconstruct aliased data by using coarse-scales curvelet coeffi cients to precondition the estimation of fi ner-scale aliased coeffi cients. This work serves as bridge between classical f-x and f-k interpolation with modern reconstruction methods based on directional transforms. In addition, Mostafa demonstrated the importance of understanding sampling in conjunction with reconstruction algorithms to fi nd viable ways of restoring unobserved data. His thesis and recent presentations at conferences are brilliant examples of the latter.

He has also presented his work numerous times at the CSEG, SEG and EAGE conventions and at meetings with R&D industrial collaborators. Mostafa’s talks are very articulate and he always tries to explain diffi cult concepts in the simplest way via well-crafted diagrams, fl owcharts and “toy examples.”

Mostafa has made more than 20 presentations at SEG, EAGE, and CSEG and has received numerous awards. He has already published more than ten articles in prestigious geophysical journals, an amazing record given that his doctorate was completed in 2009. In January 2010, Mostafa joined the University of Calgary as a postdoctoral fellow in the CREWES group and, since January 2011, Mostafa has worked in conjunction with the Signal Analysis and Imaging Group at Alberta and CREWES on data analysis, time-lapse monitoring, and wavefield sampling.

In his interaction with others, Mostafa demonstrates a deep respect for different ideas, values, beliefs, and ways of life. Many who have had the pleasure of working with Mostafa fi nd his enthusiastic and open-minded approach to scientifi c research to be a source of inspiration.