The seismic ray method has found broad applications in the numerical calculation of seismic wavefields in complex 3-D, isotropic and anisotropic, laterally varying layered structures and in the solution of forward and inverse problems of seismology and seismic exploration for oil. This article outlines the basic features of the seismic ray method, and reviews its possibilities and recent extensions. Considerable attention is devoted to ray tracing and dynamic ray tracing of S waves in anisotropic inhomogeneous media, to the coupling ray theory for S waves in such media, to the summation of Gaussian beams and packets, and to the selection of models suitable for ray tracing. The article also points to areas of the seismic ray method that are still open to further research.
The image of the paper in GIF 150dpi (6409 kB !) is designed for an instant screen preview.
The paper is available in PostScript (25681 kB !!) and GZIPped PostScript (6448 kB !).