Crustal structure beneath broad-band seismic stations in the Mediterranean region

Mark van der Meijde*, Suzan van der Lee, Domenico Giardini

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

84 Scopus citations


We have analysed receiver functions to derive simple models for crustal structure below 12 broad-band seismological stations from the MIDSEA project and 5 permanent broad-band stations in the Mediterranean region including northern Africa. To determine an accurate Moho depth we have reduced the trade-off between crustal velocities and discontinuity depth using a new grid search method, which is an extension of recently published methods to determine crustal thickness. In this method the best fitting synthetic receiver function, containing both the direct conversion and the reverberated phases, is identified on a model grid of varying Moho depth and varying Poisson's ratio. The values we found for Moho depth range from around 20 km for intra-oceanic islands and extended continental margins to near 45 km in regions where the Eurasian and African continents have collided. More detailed waveform modelling shows that all receiver functions can be well fit using a 2- or 3-layer model containing a sedimentary layer and/or a mid-crustal discontinuity. On comparing our results with Moho maps inferred from interpolated reflection and refraction data, we find that for some regions the agreement between our receiver function analysis and existing Moho maps is very good, while for other regions our observations deviate from the interpolated map values and extend beyond the geographic bounds of these maps.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)729-739
Number of pages11
JournalGeophysical Journal International
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2003


  • Broad band
  • Crustal structure
  • Moho discontinuity
  • Poisson's ratio
  • Seismic deconvolution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology


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