Abstract

In the general problem of plane wave reflection and transmission at a boundary separating two linear viscoelastic media, the mathematical formulas for the reflection and transmission coefficients, the transmission angle, the attenuation vector, etc., are not easily interpretable because they cannot easily be expressed in terms of the basic input parameters (Q, incidence angle, etc.). To gain further insight, we study two special cases in which mathematical simplifications occur. No low-loss approximations are involved. In the first case, the incident wave is homogeneous, and the Q values of the two layers are equal, and we find, among other things, that the reflection and transmission coefficients are the same as the ones for perfect elasticity (they do not involve complex velocities, etc., and are independent of Q). In the second special case, the degree of inhomogeneity of the incident wave approaches its upper limit, and we find that the reflection and transmission coefficients approach constant (complex) values independent of the incidence angle, and that there is almost no ray-bending (refraction) upon transmission of the incident wave through the boundary.

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