A Caltech Library Service

The amplitudes of waves to be expected in seismic prospecting

Gutenberg, B. (1936) The amplitudes of waves to be expected in seismic prospecting. Geophysics, 1 (2). pp. 252-256. ISSN 0016-8033. doi:10.1190/1.1437101.

PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


A method of calculating the amplitudes of bodily waves in earthquakes is applied to a study of the amplitudes of longitudinal waves produced by an artificial explosion. Formulae are given for calculating the energy of the reflected longitudinal wave arriving at the surface. The percentage of energy reflected at a discontinuity increases rapidly after the angle of incidence exceeds the critical refraction angle. However, no corresponding large amplitudes are recorded by the instruments. Instead, the maximum amplitudes of reflected waves are found near the shot point. This is because the ground movement is due both to the arriving wave and to the wave reflected downward from the ground. The amplitude of this movement depends, besides, on the rate of change of the angle of incidence with distance. It is pointed out that the same methods can be applied to a dipping bed, and that the amplitudes of the reflected waves are in general slightly larger in the up-dip than in the down-dip direction.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Additional Information:© 2005, American Geological Institute. Reference includes data from Bibliography and Index of North American Geology, U. S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA, United States. Reference includes data supplied by Society of Exploration Geophysicists, Tulsa, OK, United States. Balch Graduate School of the Geological Sciences, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California; Contribution No. 202.
Other Numbering System:
Other Numbering System NameOther Numbering System ID
Balch Graduate School of the Geological Sciences202
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20141014-073155499
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Beno Gutenberg The amplitudes of waves to be expected in seismic prospecting Geophysics, June 1936, v. 1, p. 252-256, doi:10.1190/1.1437101
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:50367
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:14 Oct 2014 17:19
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 18:55

Repository Staff Only: item control page