Seismic Rayleigh waves on an exponentially graded, orthotropic half-space
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DESTRADE, M. (2007) 'Seismic Rayleigh waves on an exponentially graded, orthotropic half-space'. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, Series A, 463 :495-502.
Efforts at modelling the propagation of seismic waves in half-spaces with continuously varying properties have mostly been focused on shear-horizontal waves. Here, a sagittally polarized (Rayleigh type) wave travels along a symmetry axis (and is attenuated along another) of an orthotropic material with stiffnesses and mass density varying in the same exponential manner with depth. In contrast to what could be expected at first sight, the analysis is very similar to that of the homogeneous half-space, with the main and capital difference that the Rayleigh wave is now dispersive. The results are illustrated numerically for (i) an orthotropic half-space typical of horizontally layered and vertically fractured shales and (ii) for an isotropic half-space made of silica. In both the examples, the wave travels at a slower speed and penetrates deeper than in the homogeneous case. In the second example, the inhomogeneity can force the wave amplitude to oscillate as well as decay with depth, in marked contrast with the homogeneous isotropic general case.