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Open-File Report 95-228

Multichannel Seismic-Reflection Profiling on the R/V Maurice Ewing During the Los Angeles Region Seismic Experiment (LARSE), California

By Thomas M. Brocher, Robert W. Clayton, Kim D. Klitgord, Robert G. Bohannon, Ray Sliter, John K. McRaney, James V. Gardner, and J.B. Keene

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (1.4 MB)Abstract

This report describes the acquisition of deep-crustal multichannel seismic-reflection data in the Inner California Borderland aboard the R/V Maurice Ewing, conducted in October 1994 as part of the Los Angeles Regional Seismic Experiment (LARSE). LARSE is a cooperative study of the crustal structure of southern California involving earth scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey, Caltech, the University of Southern California, the University of California Los Angeles, and the Southern California Earthquake Center (SCEC). During LARSE, the R/V Ewing's 20- element air gun array, totaling 137.7 liters (8470 cu. in.), was used as the primary seismic source for wide-angle recording along three main onshore-offshore lines centered on the Los Angeles basin and the epicenters of the 1933 Long Beach and 1994 Northridge earthquakes. The LARSE onshore-offshore lines were each 200-250 km long, with the offshore portions being between 90 and 150 km long. The nearly 24,000 air gun signals generated by the Ewing were recorded by an array of 170 PASSCAL REFTEK recorders deployed at 2 km intervals along all three of the onshore lines and 9 ocean bottom seismometers (OBSs) deployed along two of the lines. Separate passes over the OBS-deployment lines were performed with a long air gun repetition rate (60 and 90 seconds) to minimize acoustic-wave interference from previous shots in the OBS data. The Ewing's 4.2-km, 160-channel, digital streamer was also used to record approximately 1250 km of 40-fold multichannel seismic-reflection data. To enhance the fold of the wide-angle data recorded onshore, mitigating against cultural and wind noise in the Los Angeles basin, the entire ship track was repeated at least once resulting in fewer than about 660 km of unique trackline coverage in the Inner Borderland. Portions of the seismic-reflection lines were repeated up to 6 times. A variety of other geophysical data were also continuously recorded, including 3.5 kHz bathymetry, multi-beam swath Hydrosweep bathymetry, magnetics, and gravity data. In this report, we describe the equipment and procedures used to acquire multichannel seismic-reflection and other geophysical data aboard the Ewing, provide a detailed cruise narrative, discuss the reduction of the data, and present near-trace constant offset seismic sections of the acquired profiles.

First posted November 25, 2002

For additional information, contact:
Earthquake Science Center, Menlo Park
U.S. Geological Survey
345 Middlefield Road MS 977
Menlo Park, California 94025

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Suggested citation:

Brocher, Thomas M. Clayton, R. W. Klitgord, K. D. Bohannon, R. G. Sliter, R. W. McRaney, J. K. Gardner, J. V. Keene, J. B., 1995, Multichannel Seismic-Reflection Profiling on the R/V Maurice Ewing During the Los Angeles Region Seismic Experiment (LARSE), California: U. S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 95-228, 70 pp.,


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