Ref: SCART-2021-0111

Comparing global seismic tomography models using varimax principal component analysis

de Viron, O. ; Van Camp, M. ; Grabokowiak, A. ; Ferreira, A.M.

published in Solid Earth, 12, pp. 1601-1634 (2021)

Abstract: Global seismic tomography has greatly progressed in the past decades, with many global Earth models being produced by different research groups. Objective, statistical methods are crucial for the quantitative interpretation of the large amount of information encapsulated by the models and for unbiased model comparisons. Here we propose using a rotated version of principal component analysis (PCA) to compress the information in order to ease the geological interpretation and model comparison. The method generates between 7 and 15 principal components (PCs) for each of the seven tested global tomography models, capturing more than 97% of the total variance of the model. Each PC consists of a vertical profile, with which a horizontal pattern is associated by projection. The depth profiles and the horizontal patterns enable examining the key characteristics of the main components of the models. Most of the information in the models is associated with a few features: large low-shear velocity provinces (LLSVPs) in the lowermost mantle, subduction signals and low-velocity anomalies likely associated with mantle plumes in the upper and lower mantle, and ridges and cratons in the uppermost mantle. Importantly,all models highlight several independent components in the lower mantle that make between 36% and 69% of the total variance, depending on the model, which suggests that the lower mantle is more complex than traditionally assumed. Overall, we find that varimax PCA is a useful additional tool for the quantitative comparison and interpretation of tomography models.

Keyword(s): VARIMAX-Principal component analysis ; Tomography models ; Seismology ; Earth's mantle
DOI: 10.5194/se-12-1601-2021
Links: link

The record appears in these collections:
Royal Observatory of Belgium > Seismology & Gravimetry
Science Articles > Peer Reviewed Articles

 Record created 2021-07-22, last modified 2021-07-26