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Journal articles

Whole-mantle radially anisotropic shear velocity structure from spectral-element waveform tomography

Abstract : The radially anisotropic shear velocity structure of the Earth's mantle provides a critical window on the interior dynamics of the planet, with isotropic variations that are interpreted in terms of thermal and compositional heterogeneity and anisotropy in terms of flow. While significant progress has been made in the more than 30 yr since the advent of global seismic tomography, many open questions remain regarding the dual roles of temperature and composition in shaping mantle convection, as well as interactions between different dominant scales of convective phenomena. We believe that advanced seismic imaging techniques, such as waveform inversion using accurate numerical simulations of the seismic wavefield, represent a clear path forwards towards addressing these open questions through application to whole-mantle imaging. To this end, we employ a `hybrid' waveform-inversion approach, which combines the accuracy and generality of the spectral finite element method (SEM) for forward modelling of the global wavefield, with non-linear asymptotic coupling theory for efficient inverse modelling. The resulting whole-mantle model (SEMUCB-WM1) builds on the earlier successful application of these techniques for global modelling at upper mantle and transition-zone depths (≤800 km) which delivered the models SEMum and SEMum2. Indeed, SEMUCB-WM1 is the first whole-mantle model derived from fully numerical SEM-based forward modelling. Here, we detail the technical aspects of the development of our whole-mantle model, as well as provide a broad discussion of isotropic and radially anisotropic model structure. We also include an extensive discussion of model uncertainties, specifically focused on assessing our results at transition-zone and lower-mantle depths.
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Submitted on : Saturday, February 19, 2022 - 8:26:05 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, February 22, 2022 - 11:02:30 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Friday, May 20, 2022 - 6:06:24 PM


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S. W. French, B. A. Romanowicz. Whole-mantle radially anisotropic shear velocity structure from spectral-element waveform tomography. Geophysical Journal International, Oxford University Press (OUP), 2014, 199, pp.1303-1327. ⟨10.1093/gji/ggu334⟩. ⟨insu-03581055⟩



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