Abstract

A temporary seismometer vault was buried by a moving sand dune in the Taklimakan Desert at northwestern China in October 2019. The dune gradually covered the solar panel and the power supply to the seismic station was subsequently cut off. Here, we show that the burial process can be diagnosed according to the temperature record from the thermometer in the data‐logger, an ultra‐low‐frequency seismic signal, and the change of high‐frequency noise level from the continuous seismograms recorded by the broadband seismometer. The ultra‐low‐frequency seismic signal reflects the thermoelastic effect of the suspension spring in the seismometer corresponding to the temperature gradient in the sensor vault. At the same time, the variation of high‐frequency noise level correlates well with the temperature profile and the ultra‐low‐frequency seismic signal, indicating the ground wind intensity. The peak frequency shifts and their different responses on three‐component waveforms for the high‐frequency noise might reflect the distance from the moving dunes to the station and their moving directions. This observation shows a potential usage of continuous seismograms to study rapid environment change around a temporary seismic station.

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