Virgil Kauffman Gold Medal Award (2010)
Kees Wapenaar was awarded the Virgil Kauffman Gold Medal for his thorough and extensive theoretical work on interferometric methods in the field of multidimensional acoustical and elastic imaging, and on the practical implementation of his theory with the aim to retrieve subsurface reflection responses from ambient noise recordings. Whereas others in the field followed a more physically intuitive and kinematically oriented approach, Wapenaar established a rigorous foundation for the field based on Green’s theorem and the reciprocity theorem. The application of seismic interferometry with ambient noise to retrieve 3D subsurface reflections is a direct consequence of his theory. Successful field tests have been carried out by and in cooperation with Shell. His work is now well connected to the industry practice and he has been very active in transferring technical knowledge about the new subject of seismic interferometry to a broad audience.
Contributed by Jacob Fokkema
It is an honor to write this citation for my friend and respected colleague Kees Wapenaar whom I have known since 1982.
Prof. Dr. Ir. Kees Wapenaar in a nutshell:
Kees received his M.Sc. degree in applied physics in 1981 and his Ph.D. degree in applied sciences in 1986, both from the Delft University of Technology. From 1986 until 1999, he was a project leader of the Delphi consortium in the Department of Applied Physics. In 1999, he was appointed Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Professor in the Department of Geotechnology, also at TU Delft. Since 2002, he has headed the Applied Geophysics and Petrophysics Section. Since 1986, he has co-supervised 30 Ph.D. and 75 M.Sc. students.
The Virgil Kauffman Gold Medal is awarded to a person who made a significant contribution to an outstanding advancement in the science of geophysical exploration. This is exactly what Kees did when he gave seismic interferometry a strong theoretical basis that led to the pursuit of practical applications in exploration seismic.
Kees rigorously proved Claerbout’s conjecture. He provided a solid mathematical foundation and clarity for future work in interferometry. The related reciprocity equation of correlation type is now recognized as the mathematical basis for unifying the various correlation-based redatuming methods and is the starting point of new developments in interferometry. Why is seismic interferometry important? Exploration geophysics is a scientific discipline with the goal of reconstructing Earth properties, mostly from surface measurements.
Seismic interferometry is a technique of cross-correlating seismic traces recorded at different locations at the measurement surface with the aim of retrieving information about the subsurface. The underlying mathematical foundation of interferometry is based on the corresponding reciprocity theorem and the time-reversal invariance of the wave equation. The promise of seismic interferometry is to better utilize the existing incomplete data for the reconstruction of Earth properties, either by improving data gathering by obtaining data in configurations that would have been otherwise physically impossible or impractical, or by better imaging from incomplete data.
The nomination of Kees Wapenaar is based on his thorough and extensive theoretical work on interferometric methods in the field of multidimensional acoustical and elastic imaging, and on the practical implementation of his theory with the aim to retrieve subsurface reflection responses from ambient noise recordings.
Kees has made a large number of valuable contributions to maximize the potential of the interferometric method. Successful field tests have been carried out by and in cooperation with Shell. His work is now well connected to industry practice.
Kees has been very active in lecturing, teaching, and communicating his deep knowledge of seismic interferometry to a broader audience. His EAGE Distinguished Lecture on the subject is one excellent example. Kees was one of three editors of a supplement for Geophysics on the subject in 2006, and he, with the same team, edited the 2008 SEG reprint volume Seismic Interferometry: History and Present Status. He has also been driving and organizing a number of workshops on the subject, to share ideas and to connect different disciplines, including the very well attended workshop following SEG’s 2005 Annual Meeting in Houston and the 2006 EAGE Workshop in Vienna. Kees Wapenaar is a man of great scientific integrity and one of the scientists who is responsible for the reputation of Delft in the theory of seismic exploration. This award, bestowed on him, accentuates this renown, and the importance of his work for our community.
SEG Best Paper Presented at the Annual Meeting Award (2010)
In 2010, Joost van der Neut, Kurang Jvalant Mehta, Jan Thorbecke, and Kees Wapenaar were given the SEG Best Paper Presented at the Annual Meeting Award for their paper "Controlled-source elastic interferometric imaging by multidimensional deconvolution with downhole receivers below a complex overburden."
Best Paper in Geophysics (2006)
- Honors and Awards Program 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, 20 September 2011 Grand Hyatt San Antonio, Texas USA p.
- Wapenaar, K. and Fokkema, J. (2006). ”Green’s function representations for seismic interferometry.” GEOPHYSICS, 71(4), SI33–SI46.doi: 10.1190/1.2213955