Nonlinear refraction and reflection travel time tomography

Journal of Geophysical Research B: Solid Earth
By: , and 



We develop a rapid nonlinear travel time tomography method that simultaneously inverts refraction and reflection travel times on a regular velocity grid. For travel time and ray path calculations, we apply a wave front method employing graph theory. The first-arrival refraction travel times are calculated on the basis of cell velocities, and the later refraction and reflection travel times are computed using both cell velocities and given interfaces. We solve a regularized nonlinear inverse problem. A Laplacian operator is applied to regularize the model parameters (cell slownesses and reflector geometry) so that the inverse problem is valid for a continuum. The travel times are also regularized such that we invert travel time curves rather than travel time points. A conjugate gradient method is applied to minimize the nonlinear objective function. After obtaining a solution, we perform nonlinear Monte Carlo inversions for uncertainty analysis and compute the posterior model covariance. In numerical experiments, we demonstrate that combining the first arrival refraction travel times with later reflection travel times can better reconstruct the velocity field as well as the reflector geometry. This combination is particularly important for modeling crustal structures where large velocity variations occur in the upper crust. We apply this approach to model the crustal structure of the California Borderland using ocean bottom seismometer and land data collected during the Los Angeles Region Seismic Experiment along two marine survey lines. Details of our image include a high-velocity zone under the Catalina Ridge, but a smooth gradient zone between. Catalina Ridge and San Clemente Ridge. The Moho depth is about 22 km with lateral variations. Copyright 1998 by the American Geophysical Union.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Nonlinear refraction and reflection travel time tomography
Series title Journal of Geophysical Research B: Solid Earth
DOI 10.1029/98JB01981
Volume 103
Issue B12
Year Published 1998
Language English
Contributing office(s) Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center
Larger Work Type Article
Larger Work Subtype Journal Article
Larger Work Title Journal of Geophysical Research B: Solid Earth
First page 29743
Last page 29757