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Multifrequency measurements of core-diffracted P waves (Pdiff) for global waveform tomography

Hosseini, Kasra, and Karin Sigloch (2015), Multifrequency measurements of core-diffracted P waves (Pdiff) for global waveform tomography, Geophysical Journal International, 203(1), 506-521, doi:10.1093/gji/ggv298.

The lower third of the mantle is sampled extensively by body waves that diffract around the earth’s core (Pdiff and Sdiff phases), which could deliver highly resolved tomographic images of this poorly understood region. But core-diffracted waves—especially Pdiff waves—are not often used in tomography because they are difficult to model adequately. Our aim is to make core-diffracted body waves usable for global waveform tomography, across their entire frequency range. Here we present the data processing part of this effort. A method is demonstrated that routinely calculates finite-frequency traveltimes of Pdiff waves by cross-correlating large quantities of waveform data with synthetic seismograms, in frequency passbands ranging from 30.0 to 2.7 s dominant period. Green’s functions for 1857 earthquakes, typically comprising thousands of seismograms, are calculated by theoretically exact wave propagation through a spherically symmetric earth model, up to 1 Hz dominant period. Out of 418 226 candidates, 165 651 (39.6 per cent) source–receiver pairs yielded at least one successful passband measurement of a Pdiff traveltime anomaly, for a total of 479 559 traveltimes in the eight passbands considered. Measurements of teleseismic P waves yielded 448 178 usable source–receiver paths from 613 057 candidates (73.1 per cent success rate), for a total of 2 306 755 usable teleseismic dT in eight passbands. Observed and predicted characteristics of Pdiff traveltimes are discussed and compared to teleseismic P for this very large data set. Pdiff measurements are noise-limited due to severe wave attenuation with epicentral distance and frequency. Measurement success drops from 40–60 per cent at 80° distance, to 5–10 per cent at 140°. Frequency has a 2–3 times stronger influence on measurement success for Pdiff than for P. The fewest usable dT measurements are obtained in the microseismic noise band, whereas the fewest usable teleseismic P measurements occur at the highest frequencies. dT anomalies are larger for Pdiff than for P, and frequency dependence of dT due to 3-D heterogeneity (rather than just diffraction) is larger for Pdiff as well. Projecting the Pdiff traveltime anomalies on their core-grazing segments, we retrieve well-known, large-scale structural heterogeneities of the lowermost mantle, such as the two Large Low Shear Velocity Provinces, an Ultra-Low Velocity Zone west of Hawaii, and subducted slab accumulations under East Asia and Central America.
Further information
  author = {Kasra Hosseini and Karin Sigloch},
  journal = {Geophysical Journal International},
  number = {1},
  pages = {506-521},
  title = {{Multifrequency measurements of core-diffracted P waves (Pdiff) for global waveform tomography}},
  volume = {203},
  year = {2015},
  url = {http://gji.oxfordjournals.org/content/203/1/506.abstract},
  doi = {10.1093/gji/ggv298},
%0 Journal Article
%A Hosseini, Kasra
%A Sigloch, Karin
%D 2015
%N 1
%V 203
%J Geophysical Journal International
%P 506-521
%T Multifrequency measurements of core-diffracted P waves (Pdiff) for global waveform tomography
%U http://gji.oxfordjournals.org/content/203/1/506.abstract
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Printed 21. Aug 2019 03:13