Abstract Taking advantage of the large number of seismic stations installed in Europe, in particular in the greater Alpine region with the AlpArray experiment, we derive a new high-resolution 3-D shear-wave velocity model of the European crust and uppermost mantle from ambient noise tomography. The correlation of up to four years of continuous vertical-component seismic recordings from 1293 broadband stations (10° W-35° E, 30° N-75° N) provides Rayleigh wave group velocity dispersion data in the period band 5-150 s at more than 0.8 million virtual source-receiver pairs. Two-dimensional Rayleigh wave group velocity maps are estimated using adaptive parameterization to accommodate the strong heterogeneity of path coverage. A probabilistic 3-D shear-wave velocity model, including probability densities for the depth of layer boundaries and S-wave velocity values, is obtained by non-linear Bayesian inversion. A weighted average of the probabilistic model is then used as starting model for the linear inversion step, providing the final Vs model. The resulting S-wave velocity model and Moho depth are validated by comparison with previous geophysical studies. Although surface-wave tomography is weakly sensitive to layer boundaries, vertical cross-sections through our Vs model and the associated probability of presence of interfaces display striking similarities with reference controlled-source (CSS) and receiver-function sections across the Alpine belt. Our model even provides new structural information such as a ∼8 km Moho jump along the CSS ECORS-CROP profile that was not imaged by reflection data due to poor penetration across a heterogeneous upper crust. Our probabilistic and final shear wave velocity models have the potential to become new reference models of the European crust, both for crustal structure probing and geophysical studies including waveform modeling or full waveform inversion. Ambient noise, Tomography, Europe, Alps, Shear-wave velocity model © The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society. This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/about_us/legal/notices)
Geophysical Journal International – Oxford University Press
Published: May 11, 2018
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