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Wave impedance inversion is a non-linear inverse problem. In recent years, people have made great efforts in this research and recent years it has emerged more and more new non-linear inversion method with the application of the nonlinear inversion problems. This paper adopted an improved particle swarm optimization, i.e. an adaptive particle swarm optimization, for the wave impedance inversion. This adaptive particle swarm optimization is based on the swarm intelligence theory, and this method combines three possible direction of movement with rights for global optimization. This method has a faster search speed and a strong ability of global optimization. This paper applied this method in function test and wave impedance inversion. The results show that this adaptive particle swarm optimization algorithm is a global optimization algorithm with a strong ability to adapt. It is feasible and effective for wave impedance inversion problem.