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Seismic Tomography // Seismische Tomographie

Imaging of the Earth's Interior is one fundamental approach in seismology to study the Earth’s lithosphere and sublithospheric mantle. This can be achieved by utilizing body and/or surface wave observables or entire waveforms. On a continental scale, surface wave phase velocities are a highly useful observable as they can be measured on a broad bandwidth and thus allow construction of models with a high lateral as well as vertical resolution. Moreover, information about variations in anisotropy (both azimuthal and radial) can be easily extracted from these observables.


We use surface wave observables extracted from observations of seismic waveforms emitted by earthquakes around the globe, as well as from observables extracted by analysing the continuous excitation of the ground by ambient noise. Both observables can be nicely combined into a singular dataset for seismic tomography.



Rayleigh wave phase velocity at 55s period in Central Europe, approximately at the depth of ~100km (Opens external link in new windowMeier et al., 2016). Blue areas are interpreted as lithospheric, red areas as asthenospheric upper mantle.


Current projects:

  • Seismic tomography of the greater Mediterranean
  • Opens internal link in current windowCOOL - Crust of the Oman Ophiolite and its Lithosphere
  • Opens external link in new windowAlpArray