Abstract

Within reflection seismology, surface waves or ground roll, are often considered a form of unwanted source-generated noise. Unlike body waves, surface waves propagate exclusively in the lateral direction and are virtually insensitive to structure deeper than one wavelength. For a nominal frequency of 5 Hz and phase velocity of 500 m/s, this means that a surface wave of the Rayleigh or Love type only feels the upper 100 m of the subsurface. As a result, surface waves cannot be used for imaging deep reflectors; however, they can be used to estimate near-surface properties (Xia et al., 1999; Ross et al., 2008), in particular the shear-wave velocity. Knowledge of near-surface velocity structure in turn can be used to estimate shear-wave statics in reflection seismology. Estimating statics in the presence of laterally varying structure (i.e., obtaining the long-wavelength static component) can be challenging.

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