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Seismic attenuation of the inner core: Viscoelastic or stratigraphic?

Geophysical Research Letters

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Abstract

Broadband velocity waveforms of PKIKP in the distance range 150??to 180??are inverted for inner core attenuation. A mean Q?? of 244 is determined at 1 Hz from 8 polar and 9 equatorial paths. The scatter in measured Q-1 exceeds individual error estimates, suggesting significant variation in attenuation with path. These results are interpreted by (1) viscoelasticity, in which the relaxation spectrum has a low-frequency corner near or slightly above the frequency band of short-period body waves, and by (2) stratigraphic (scattering) attenuation, in which attenuation and pulse broadening are caused by the interference of scattered multiples in a velocity structure having rapid fluctuations along a PKIKP path. In the scattering interpretation, PKIKP attenuation is only weakly affected by the intrinsic shear attenuation measured in the free-oscillation band. Instead, its frequency dependence, path variations, and fluctuations are all explained by scattering attenuation in a heterogeneous fabric resulting from solidification texturing of intrinsically anisotropic iron. The requisite fabric may consist of either single or ordered groups of crystals with P velocity differences of at least 5% and as much as 12% between two crystallographic axes at scale lengths of 0.5 to 2 km in the direction parallel to the axis of rotation and longer in the cylindrically radial direction, perpendicular to the axis of rotation.Broadband velocity waveforms of PKIKP in the distance range 150?? to 180?? are inverted for inner core attenuation. A mean Q?? of 244 is determined at 1 Hz from 8 polar and 9 equatorial paths. The scatter in the measured Q-1 exceeds individual error estimates, indicating significant variation in attenuation with path. The results are interpreted by viscoelasticity and stratigraphic (scattering) attenuation.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Seismic attenuation of the inner core: Viscoelastic or stratigraphic?
Series title:
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume
25
Issue:
21
Year Published:
1998
Language:
English
Publisher:
American Geophysical Union
Publisher location:
Washington, DC, United States
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Geophysical Research Letters
First page:
4019
Last page:
4022
Number of Pages:
4