Journal Article

Seasonal variations of seismic velocities in the San Jacinto fault area observed with ambient seismic noise

G. Hillers, Y. Ben-Zion, M. Campillo and D. Zigone

in Geophysical Journal International

Volume 202, issue 2, pages 920-932
ISSN: 0956-540X
Published online June 2015 | e-ISSN: 1365-246X | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/gji/ggv151
Seasonal variations of seismic velocities in the San Jacinto fault area observed with ambient seismic noise

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We observe seasonal seismic wave speed changes (dv/v) in the San Jacinto fault area and investigate several likely source mechanisms. Velocity variations are obtained from analysis of 6 yr data of vertical component seismic noise recorded by 10 surface and six borehole stations. We study the interrelation between dv/v records, frequency-dependent seismic noise properties, and nearby environmental data of wind speed, rain, ground water level, barometric pressure and atmospheric temperature. The results indicate peak-to-peak seasonal velocity variations of ∼0.2 per cent in the 0.5–2 Hz frequency range, likely associated with genuine changes of rock properties rather than changes in the noise field. Phase measurements between dv/v and the various environmental data imply that the dominant source mechanism in the arid study area is thermoelastic strain induced by atmospheric temperature variations. The other considered environmental effects produce secondary variations that are superimposed on the thermal-based changes. More detailed work with longer data on the response of rocks to various known external loadings can help tracking the evolving stress and effective rheology at depth.

Keywords: Time-series analysis; Interferometry; Elasticity and anelasticity

Journal Article.  9193 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Volcanology and Seismology

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