A tomographic image of mantle structure beneath Southern California
Article first published online: 7 DEC 2012
Copyright 1984 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 11, Issue 7, pages 625–627, July 1984
How to Cite
(1984), A tomographic image of mantle structure beneath Southern California. Geophysical Research Letters, 11: 625–627. doi: 10.1029/GL011i007p00625
- Issue published online: 7 DEC 2012
- Article first published online: 7 DEC 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 16 MAR 1984
- Manuscript Received: 18 JAN 1984
We determined the variations in seismic structure beneath southern California by using a tomographic method of inversion on teleseismic P delays recorded with the Southern California Array. The algorithm employed was a modified form of an Algebraic Reconstruction Technique (ART) used in medical X-ray imaging. Deconvolution with an empirically estimated point spread function was also used to help in focusing the image.
The inversion reveals two prominent features beneath the region. The first is a thin, vertical wedge directly beneath the Transverse Ranges that is 2-3% faster than the surrounding region. This feature deepens to the east, attaining a maximum depth of about 250 km beneath the San Bernardino Mountains. The second feature is a major zone of low velocity material that is 2-4% slow under the Salton Trough rift valley, extending to a depth of about 125 km. Two possible explanations for the spatial association of the Transverse Ranges with the velocity anomaly below are lithospheric subduction or small-scale sublithospheric convection in the region of the Big Bend of the San Andreas Fault. The low velocity anomaly beneath the Salton Trough is consistent with convective upwelling there.