Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth

Anelastic Earth structure from the coherency of the ambient seismic field



[1] Cross correlation of the ambient seismic field is now routinely used to measure seismic wave travel times; however, relatively little attention has been paid to other information that could be extracted from these signals. In this paper we demonstrate the relationship between the spatial coherency of the ambient field and the elastodynamic Green's function in both time and frequency domains. Through measurement of the frequency domain coherency as a function of distance, we sequentially recover phase velocities and attenuation coefficients. From these measurements we generate 1-D shear wave velocity and attenuation models for southern California. The ambient field measurements of attenuation and the exceptional path coverage that results from the many possible interstation measurements allow us to extend Q estimates over a range of frequencies that has previously been difficult to analyze using earthquake data. Measurements from paths that cross major sedimentary basins show both lower wave speeds and lower-quality factors than other paths, as expected. Our results indicate that there is a wealth of information available in the spatial coherency of the ambient seismic field.