Scattering of teleseismic waves in the lower crust observations in the Massif Central, France

Joachim R.R. Ritter*, P. Martin Mai, Gerald Stoll, Karl Fuchs

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


High-frequency coda signals consistently recorded by a temporary seismic network of 29 short-period stations during a 6-month survey in the French Massif Central are concordant with independent evidence for a heterogeneous lower crust obtained from wide-angle and near-vertical reflection experiments in the same region. The teleseismic recordings of 22 events have been analysed in record sections rather than as single station seismograms. Following the low-frequency (LF; 0.5-1.5 Hz) first P-arrival a high-frequency (HF) coda (2-4 Hz dominant frequency) extends over several seconds duration. The HF signals become clearly visible after bandpass filtering, but can also be identified in the original seismograms. In event sections the HF coda forms a consistent pattern of reverberations which is characterized by the following properties: (1) the duration is typically longer on the radial (4-15 s) than on the vertical (3-11 s) component; (2) the beginning of the HF coda, referred to the picked LF first P-arrivals varies between 0-2.5 s, with a dominance around 1.5-2 s; (3) the amplitude of the HF coda is about 3%-10% of the primary LF P-phase amplitude; (4) the signals are incoherent between neighbouring stations and over the network; (5) the HF coda arrives dominantly around the plane of incidence of the teleseismic wave in the first 2 s to maximum 4 s; afterwards a widening of the particle motion to an elliptical shape is observed, indicating arrivals off the sagittal plane. The data parameters (1) to (5) point to the conclusion that the HF signals are generated by a scattering process. Wide-angle and CDP-reflection experiments in the same region measured a similar reverberating coda pattern and located the origin also in the lower crust. These observations and the data parameters of the HF coda suggest that the HF teleseismic waves are scattered at heterogeneities in the lower crust in the Massif Central. In this contribution we mainly concentrate on the presentation of the teleseismic recordings and conclude with a preliminary structural model which contains randomly distributed scatterers in the lower crust.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127-146
Number of pages20
JournalPhysics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Nov 30 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Coda signals
  • Massif Central
  • Seismic network
  • Teleseismic recordings

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Geophysics
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science


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