Questions tagged [geophysics]

Geophysics is a subject of natural science concerned with the physical processes and physical properties of the Earth and its surrounding space environment.

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Is the Yellowstone National Park unique for its geysers?

The Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming is unique for its large number of "thermal occurrences, of which there are some 30 geysers. This, in turn, appears to be the result of the presence of large ...
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How long did it take for Earth's magnetic field to first appear?

Merely what the title states. My knowledge of geography/geology/*logy is limited to high-school, and some snippets, and snatches of conversation. As I understand Earth's magnetic field is attributed ...
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How accurately can explosions be triangulated from the IRIS seismogram data?

There's a bunch of armed conflicts going on right now. What are the lower boundaries on accuracy of triangulating and timing man-made events from the IRIS datasets (accessible, for instance, with the ...
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Generic pedo-transfer functions to compute field capacity and wilting point from sand/silt/clay?

I have a model (Miguez et al 2008) that defines wilting point as the soil water content below which there is no transpiration (from Johnson et al 1993). Field capacity is defined as the volume of ...
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Mechanism for Pluto's young surface

According to recent reports (e.g. in Nature), Pluto is geologically active. It has some mechanism by which it has "recycled" its surface. I originally thought we had a similar case to Jupiter's moon ...
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Why is there a bend in the Lomonosov Ridge?

Why is there a bend in the Lomonosov Ridge? This is a supplementary question to that asked by Sabre Tooth in What is the tectonic explanation for parallel ridges in the Arctic ocean
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Relation between fault rupture aspect ratio and slip rate?

I am modeling a fault surface (which I consider to be a plane rectangle). I got the area of the surface, but the orientation is unknown, which can be found out if the aspect ratio of the rectangle is ...
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163 views

How do we determine subsurface composition?

Let's assume that a seismogram $s(t)$ is the convolution $s(t)=r(t)g(t)$ between a source signal $r(t)$ and propagation effects $g(t)$. If the source signal $r(t)$ is known, then we can obtain the ...
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What efforts have been made to separate the microseismic events related to wind-related ocean waves from the components of volcanic origin?

I have read the question What generates the microseism? and it's accompanying answer. In [#1, cited below], they use the azimuth values of seismographic activity on the flanks of the volcano ...
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What happens to the higher frequency content of the tremors associated with a volcanic eruption?

From [1]: The main characteristics of volcanic tremor depend strongly on whether a volcano is erupting explosively and on the intensity of the event. Long before an eruption, tremor is ‘narrow-...
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What is the difference between a geologist and a geophysicist?

What are the main differences between geologists and geophysicists?
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Equatorial bulge and tectonic plates

It is well known that the Earth is not a sphere, but rather it bulges at the equator. Also it is well known that the Earth's crust is composed of 7 or 8 (depending on definition) major tectonic plates,...
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What geophysical instruments should I use to detect water without drilling?

How can one detect (preferably artesian) aquifers nowadays that a lot of sensors are available? Should I use ground-penetrating radars, neutron detectors, or any other advanced devices? Can seismic ...
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Carbonate reef not horizontal in seismic section?

Carbonate reefs usually appear as homogeneous bodies surrounded by sediment layers in seismic reflection data, but in the figure below the high amplitude reflection from the top of sediment (layer 2 ...
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Why is the South Pole colder than the North Pole?

This question popped into my head because I am designing a fictional world map, and I was wondering what factors influence the amount of ice at poles. I want to know why there is much more ice ...
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Is there a “submerged object” in Australia that causes a magnetic deviation of 20 degrees?

This answer quotes this blogpost as an example of a magnetic anomaly: Basalt formation, “Mt. Jim”, in remote north-east Victoria, Australia, has a magnetic anomaly -20 degree magnetic compass ...
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What are the challenges in predicting lithology directly from acoustic impedance?

Seismic inversion methods help to visualize the subsurface layers of the earth in terms of petrophysical properties (e.g. impedance). Still some geophysicists use the final inverted impedance model in ...
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Is it known what determines the rate with which plate tectonics occur?

When investigating the rate of the move of the Hawaii hotspot, from information provided here on Stack Exchange Earth Science, I cannot find a determination of cause for the rate, that does not point ...
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What is the geothermal potential of a volcano?

If there were lots of geothermal plants—even mobile ones—near a volcano, how much power could this provide? Could the sapping of some of the heat energy make the volcano less likely to erupt?
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What tectonic structures exist on the Eurasian - North American plate boundary in eastern Siberia?

It is reasonably well known that the North American tectonic plate includes a portion of eastern Siberia. What is often typical in plate tectonic maps is that the actual plate boundary is often drawn ...
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What properties must a rocky body possess in order to exhibit the magnetic dynamo?

The magnetic field of the Earth is produced by the magnetic dynamo. What conditions must a rocky body possess in order to exhibit the dynamo? Clearly, the planet's interior must not be too cold. ...
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What is a massif and what differentiates it from other types of mountains?

Wikipedia says that a massif is "a section of a planet's crust that is demarcated by faults or flexures." It goes on to list mountain-like objects. Is it not true that most mountains are created by ...
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Is the Earth heated up by the tides?

Reading about moons of other planets they often get heated up by the tides so for example Io and Europe of Jupiter get friction by which eruptions and liquid water can arise. But is there also an ...
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How does one determine the optimum offset in a seismic survey?

I was going through a report on MASW (Multi Station Analysis of Surface Wave) and found this "To avoid the aliasing in the space domain, geophone spacing (Δx) needs to be less than half of the ...
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How far from basalt bedrock can magnetometic survey find archaeological features?

Magnetometry is used to find archaeological features such as stone walls or ancient hearth. But it usually cannot be used for archaeological prospection in areas where the bedrock is strongly magnetic....
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Stochastic seismic inversion

Could anyone recommend a free and reliable software capable of Stochastic seismic inversion for my project? am aware that Petrel is capable of Genetic inversion based on a non-linear multi-trace ...
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What geological mechanisms result in the great depth of the Mariana Trench?

According to the Mariana Trench Oceanography page is at a maximum depth of is 11,033 meters (36,201 feet) The 'Challenger Deep' being the name of the deepest point. I understand that it is a ...
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Where did the energy released due to gravitational binding energy of the Earth go? [closed]

The gravitational binding energy of the Earth is $2×10^{32} J $, so the same amount of energy must have been released during the Earth's history. According to this and this, the current internal ...
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Why is the lithostatic pressure gradient 1 psi/ft? How is it derived from density?

Why is the geostatic (or is it the lithostatic?) gradient 1 psi/ft? How is that derived from g/cc? Thanks.
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How isotropic is the Earth's inner core boundary?

Often, in texts (particularly for schools etc) depict a smooth spherical isotropic boundary between the inner and outer core, as shown in the image from this USGS public education page: The inner ...
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Earthquakes at plate boundaries

I was looking into tectonic plate boundaries and earthquakes with pictures like these One thing that is quite obvious is that some of the plate boundaries have very thin zones of earthquakes, ...
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What are the striations or ridges in the eastern Pacific Ocean?

Messing around on Google Earth recently I noticed a number of striations in the Eastern Pacific. These appear in an East-West orientation and seem to start on the North and South American continental ...
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327 views

Is altitude of everything decreasing due to sea level rise?

We know that sea level is rising, though some people say climate change is fake. Altitude is defined as the height of something measured from sea level. Since sea level is increasing, and the ...
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How much water is the atmosphere losing to space?

Up until recently, I was under a (wrong) impression that the amount of planetary cumulative water resources was finite as I believed its escape from the atmosphere was impossible. I believed that, ...
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Terrain correction for gravity data using Nagy, 1973

I am working with an algorithm for terrain correction of gravity data. I am using Nagy, 1973. However, I could not get the results I need. So, this is the problem. I have this function where x,y,z ...
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What is the current status of geophysical global cooling theory?

Plate tectonics effectively rubbished the theory of geophysical global cooling as a means of explaining many surface features on the Earth. However, this wiki says that the same process is responsible ...
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How should I choose the block size in constrained model-based inversion?

In constrained model based inversion, block size (in ms) is one of the inversion parameters. Specifying the block size value in the software divides the pseudo-velocity log into that number of layers ...
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What makes the conditions at the core/mantle boundary ideal for aluminum to combine with other elements besides oxygen?

Recently, steinhardite was accepted as a new mineral by the International Mineralogical Association. It's quite an interesting story in its own right. There's an interesting article in New Scientist ...
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Does the Earth receive a net charge from the aurorae?

The sun radiates a lot of charged particles to the Earth. When the magnetic field of the Earth lines up to the poles, we get the beautiful polar lights. But are there as many negative charged as ...
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Impact craters vs volcanic explosions on Mars

A maar is a shallow volcanic crater with steep sides that is surrounded by tephra deposits. The tephra deposits are thickest near the crater and decrease with distance from the crater. Source: http://...
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What tectonic structures delineate the split between the Australian and Indian tectonic plates?

Growing up, when looking in textbooks and other references about plate tectonics, there was always the Indo-Australian (or Indian-Australian) plate, such as shown below: Image source: The Geologic ...
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What are the factors that dictate a given topology for seismometer placement around a volcano?

The image below (borrowed from [#1]) shows the topology of the seismometers around the volcano Stromboli. In the text, they explain the following: The seimometers were set on the flanks of the ...
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Dependence of solar irradiation through the atmosphere on Sun's altitude

I want to show that the higher the Sun's altitude, the higher the solar irradiation through the atmosphere, through simple experiments. However, I don't have the instrument that measures irradiation. ...
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Why does New Zealand and cold countries have volcanoes?

I understand that volcanoes are caused by the heat that causes high intense pressure below the Earth's surface. This intense pressure gets released and causes magna which becomes hot lava to flow out ...
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How do archaeologists address time dilation when analyzing carbon dating results?

It is a proven fact that the gravitational force exerted upon an object directly affects that objects experience of time; the greater the gravity, the slower time passes, and visa versa. While the ...
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Does the climate have any effect on plate tectonics?

After reading the question and answer Is there any correlation between La Niña/El Niño and seismic activity?, I am wondering if there is any evidence (case studies) to suggest that longer term ...
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Why do deviated wells show poor correlation to seismic data?

Well correlation and calibration is an important step in any type of seismic inversion. In order to obtain a good broadband frequency model, the synthetics should be correlated with original seismic ...
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How did the Ural mountains form?

A nice picture for "how mountains formed" on Earth is due to the motion of tectonic plates. As the plates crash together, mountains may get "pushed upwards". However, a quick look at a map of the ...
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Are the oceans rising or the continents going down? How can we know?

The century old sustained rising of oceans, at a rate of 2-4 mm/y, remains a unexplained phenomenon; there is no correlation with temperature variations, so it is not due to the thermal variation of ...
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What is the total Earth's interior energy budget?

What is the total Earth's interior energy budget? What is the heat flux per m2 that warms the Earth surface because of the Earthy's internal heat. How much of that heat is replenished from the ...