Thunder-induced ground motions: 1. Observations


Acoustic pressure from thunder and its induced ground motions were investigated using a small array consisting of five three-component short-period surface seismometers, a three-component borehole seismometer, and five infrasound microphones. We used the array to constrain wave parameters of the incident acoustic and seismic waves. The incident slowness differences between acoustic pressure and ground motions suggest that ground reverberations were first initiated somewhat away from the array. Using slowness inferred from ground motions is preferable to obtain the seismic source parameters. We propose a source equalization procedure for acoustic/seismic deconvolution to generate the time domain transfer function, a procedure similar to that of obtaining teleseismic earthquake receiver functions. The time domain transfer function removes the incident pressure time history from the seismogram. An additional vertical-to-radial ground motion transfer function was used to identify the Rayleigh wave propagation mode of induced seismic waves complementing that found using the particle motions and amplitude variations in the borehole. The initial motions obtained by the time domain transfer functions suggest a low Poisson 's ratio for the near-surface layer. The acoustic-to-seismic transfer functions show a consistent reverberation series at frequencies near 5 Hz. This gives an empirical measure of site resonance that depends on the ratio of the layer velocity to layer thickness for earthquake P and S waves. The time domain transfer function approach by transferring a spectral division into the time domain provides an alternative method for studying acoustic-to-seismic coupling. Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.

Publication Title

Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth