The geological conditions of coal roadway excavation are complicated. Seismic advanced detection is strongly influenced by the loose circle of fractured rock surrounding the competent coal seam. However, the three-dimensional wave field characteristics of small fault advanced detection in the condition of the loose circle of coal roadway have not examined. In this paper, numerical modeling and field tests were conducted to address this knowledge gap. The results indicate that when a seismic source near the tunnel face is excited, the body waves and a Love channel wave propagate in the tunneling direction toward the small fault, then produces reflected body waves whose amplitude is relatively weak, and a reflected Love channel wave whose amplitude is relatively strong. When reflected body waves and the reflected Love channel wave enter the loose circle of surrounding rock, the former's signal is unrecognizable in seismic record; but the latter converts to a Love wave whose amplitude is strong in the loose circle of coal seam. The Love wave which has a large interval from other wave trains in the time domain is easily recognizable in seismic record, which makes it suitable for advanced detection of small fault. The signal-to-noise ratio of seismic record of X component is higher than those of Y component and Z component.

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