Acta Geophysica

, Volume 66, Issue 6, pp 1303–1340 | Cite as

Seismic crust structure beneath the Aegean region in southwest Turkey from radial anisotropic inversion of Rayleigh and Love surface waves

  • Özcan Çakır
Research Article - Solid Earth Sciences


The Turkish plate is covered by hundreds of accelerometer and broadband seismic stations with less than 50 km inter-station distance providing high-quality earthquake recordings within the last decade. We utilize part of these stations to extract the fundamental mode Rayleigh and Love surface wave phase and group velocity data in the period range 5–20 s to determine the crust structure beneath the Aegean region in southwest Turkey. The observed surface wave signals are interpreted using both single-station and two-station techniques. A tomographic inversion technique is employed to obtain the two-dimensional group velocity maps from the single-station group velocities. One-dimensional velocity–depth profiles under each two-dimensional mesh point, which are jointly interpreted to acquire the three-dimensional image of the shear-wave velocities underneath the study area, are attained by utilizing the least-squares inversion technique, which is repeated for both Rayleigh and Love surface waves. The isotropic crust structure cannot jointly invert the observed Rayleigh and Love surface waves where the radial anisotropic crust better describes the observed surface wave data. The intrusive magmatic activity related to the northward subducting African plate under the Turkish plate results the crust structure deformations, which we think, causing the observed radial anisotropy throughout complex pattern of dykes and sills. The magma flow resulting in the mineral alignment within dykes and sills contributes to the observed anisotropy. Due to the existence of dykes, the radial anisotropy in the upper crust is generally negative, i.e., vertically polarized S-waves (Vsv) are faster than horizontally polarized S-waves (Vsh). Due to the existence of sills, the radial anisotropy in the middle-to-lower crust is generally positive, i.e., horizontally polarized S-waves (Vsh) are faster than vertically polarized S-waves (Vsv). Similar radial anisotropic results to those of the single-station analyses are obtained by the two-station analyses utilizing the cross-correlograms. The widespread volcanic and plutonic rocks in the region are consistent with the current seismic interpretations of the crustal deformations.


Aegean region Group velocity Phase velocity Radial anisotropy Surface waves Tomography 



We would like to thank the anonymous reviewers for critically reviewing the manuscript. KOERI (Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research Institute) is gratefully acknowledged for the broadband seismograms. AFAD (Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency) is thanked for providing the accelerogram recordings. We gratefully acknowledge the use of Generic Mapping Tool (GMT) in several figure illustrations. Accelerogram instrument distributors kindly provided the pole–zero files.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

11600_2018_223_MOESM1_ESM.jpg (457 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (JPEG 457 kb)


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© Institute of Geophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences & Polish Academy of Sciences 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.ÇanakkaleTurkey

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