Converted T phases recorded on Hawaii from polynesian nuclear tests: A preliminary report

E. A. Okal*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


We present a preliminary study of T waves from Polynesian nuclear tests at Mururoa, recorded on digital stations of the Hawaii Volcano Observatory network, following their conversion to seismic waves at the southern shore of the Island of Hawaii, and subsequent propagation to the recording stations. We show that seismograms are composed of several packets, which can be interpreted as resulting from T → P and T → S conversions, and which feature distinct spectral characteristics. As the distance from the shoreline to the station increases, the relative importance of the several wave packets changes; a prominent shadow for T → P is found at 8-12 km from the shore. This pattern is affected by the local crustal structure; in a favorable case, propagation in deep, low-attenuation layers resulted in a clear record as far as 76 km from the shoreline. While these results are generally robust, they can be moderately affected by a change of location of the source inside Mururoa Atoll.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)457-474
Number of pages18
JournalPure and Applied Geophysics
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2001


  • Nuclear tests
  • Seismic conversions
  • T phases

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology


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