• seismology;
  • seismic ambient noise monitoring;
  • crustal deformation;
  • Wenchuan earthquake;
  • Tibet

[1] We track the temporal evolution of seismic wave speed to detect changes in material properties at depth, driven by deformation associated with the 2008 Mw 7.9 Wenchuan earthquake. We analyze ambient noise correlation functions to monitor seismic wave speed variations. The data were continuously recorded during 2 years by 114 broadband stations in a region that covers the southern two thirds of the ruptured fault. We perform the analysis in the 12-to-20-s period band. By comparison with measurements in the band 1-to-3  s, we show that the seismic velocity changes cannot be explained by a shallow perturbation but are related to deformation at depth in the crust. The spatial and temporal characteristics of these variations can thus be viewed as reflecting the middle crust behavior. In particular, the results suggest that the deformation in the middle crust is different beneath Tibet and the Sichuan basin.