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Estimate of Rayleigh‐to‐Love wave ratio in the secondary microseism by colocated ring laser and seismograph


Using a colocated ring laser and an STS-2 seismograph, we estimate the ratio of Rayleigh-to-Love waves in the secondary microseism at Wettzell, Germany, for frequencies between 0.13 and 0.30 Hz. Rayleigh wave surface acceleration was derived from the vertical component of STS-2, and Love wave surface acceleration was derived from the ring laser. Surface wave amplitudes are comparable; near the spectral peak about 0.22 Hz, Rayleigh wave amplitudes are about 20% higher than Love wave amplitudes, but outside this range, Love wave amplitudes become higher. In terms of the kinetic energy, Rayleigh wave energy is about 20-35% smaller on average than Love wave energy. The observed secondary microseism at Wettzell thus consists of comparable Rayleigh and Love waves but contributions from Love waves are larger. This is surprising as the only known excitation mechanism for the secondary microseism, described by Longuet-Higgins (1950), is equivalent to a vertical force and should mostly excite Rayleigh waves.

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