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Abstract

In considering how the energy of a seismic disturbance is dissipated one is led to enquire into the possibility of the existence of waves, analogous to Rayleigh waves and Love waves, that are propagated in the interior of the earth along the junction of strata, or chiefly within a certain stratum, so that the energy is dissipated by internal viscosity without the occurrence of any appreciable surface displacement.

Two surfaces of discontinuity of density and elastic properties are commonly believed to exist below that part of the earth’s crust which is accessible to geologists, namely, the junction of the granitic layer with the basic rocks, and the surface of separation of the Wiechert metallic core from the rocky shell. It becomes of interest to examine whether a wave of the Rayleigh type can be propagated along such an interface; an enquiry may also be made into the circumstances in which a wave of the Love type may exist if a stratum of uniform thickness is bounded on both sides by very deep layers of different materials.

It has been pointed out to me by Dr. Harold Jeffreys that the former problem is in some respects a particular case of Prof. Love’s discussion

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