From an analysis of many seismic profiles across the stable continental regions of North America and northern Europe, the crustal and upper mantle velocity structure is determined. Analysis procedures include ray theory calculations and synthetic seismograms computed using reflectivity techniques. The P wave velocity structure beneath the Canadian Shield is virtually identical to that beneath the Baltic Shield to a depth of at least 800 km. Two major layers with a total thickness of about 42 km characterize the crust of these shield regions. Features of the upper mantle of these region include velocity discontinuities at depths of about 74 km, 330 km, 430 km and 700 km. A 13 km thick P wave low velocity channel beginning at a depth of about 94 km is also present. A number of problems associated with record section interpretation are identified and a generalized approach to seismic profile analysis using many record sections is described. The S wave velocity structure beneath the Canadian Shield is derived from constrained surface wave data. The thickness of the lithosphere beneath the Canadian and Baltic Shields is determined to be 95-100 km. The continental plate thickness may be the same as the lithospheric thickness, although available data do not exclude the possibility of the continental plate being thicker than the lithosphere. ?? 1987 Birkha??user Verlag.
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Crustal and upper mantle structure of stable continental regions in North America and northern Europe