Original paper

Historic microseismic data and their relation to the wave-climate in the North Atlantic

Dahm, Torsten; Krüger, Frank; Essen, Heinz-Hermann; Hensch, Martin

Meteorologische Zeitschrift Vol. 14 No. 6 (2005), p. 771 - 779

published: Dec 19, 2005

DOI: 10.1127/0941-2948/2005/0081

BibTeX file

ArtNo. ESP025011406010


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Microseismic data from observatories in Europe, which have been continuously recorded since about 100 years, contain information on the wave-climate in the North Atlantic. They can potentially be used as additional constraints in high-resolution temporal and spatial reconstructions of the storminess and oceanic waveheights in the past. To resolve spatial patterns data from observatories in different regions are needed. While previous recent studies analyzed only few observatory archives and relatively short time ranges, this is a first attempt to process the whole available data archive from different observatories. We correct and compare smoothed microseismic data from different stations and discuss their correlation and possible use for studies of storminess variability. Microseismic amplitudes at four seismic stations in northern Europe show amplitude peaks in 1920 and 1925, a slow decline in amplitudes till the middle of the 1930's followed by a steady increase of amplitudes till about 1990. From 1990 on microseismic amplitudes decrease. We find a good correlation between the average surface wind velocity in the North Atlantic and microseismic amplitudes at inland stations far away from the coast. Coastal stations are more influenced by local swell and are thus potentially useful to recover regional changes in wind and ocean wave fields with time. The study demonstrates that the analysis of microseismic has the potential to assess climate changes during the last 100 years.