2009 Alum

Stephen Hernandez

Stephen Hernandez

Years participated in RESESS:
2005 →
2006 →
2008 →

An Overview

Shear Wave Splitting Analysis from Newly-Installed Seismic Stations in Antarctica

Academic Affiliation: Senior, University of Texas at El Paso, Mathematics
Science Research Mentor: Doug Wiens - Washinton University


The tectonic fabric of the upper mantle is inferred using SKS and SKKS splitting analysis of data from 15 newly-installed broadband seismic stations in West and East Antarctica. Data collected between December 2007 and December 2008 from 5 stations from the Polar Earth Observing Network (POLENET experiment) and 10 stations from the Gamburtsev Antarctic Mountains Seismic Experiment (GAMSEIS experiment) are used to perform an SKS and SKKS anisotropy analysis of the regions. In West Antarctica, POLENET stations straddle the West Antarctic Rift System (WARS) while in East Antarctica GAMSEIS stations are centered on and around the Gamburtsev Subglacial Mountains (GSM). POLENET stations show splitting times ranging from .85s to 1.25s and fast axes in cursory agreement with the inferred direction of WARS extension. For the larger focus of our study, GAMSEIS stations show a wider range of delay times (.65s to 1.55s) and fast splitting directions that may indicate the existence of 2 distinct tectonic regimes.