Fin whale songs can be used to explore the oceanic crust

Finwhale songs contain signals that are reflected and refracted within the earth's crust.

If these signals

recorded with seismometers, they can be used to determine the thickness of the earth's crust and its layers.

The authors of the work studied earthquakes usinga set of 54 seismometers that were on the ocean floor along the rift on the Oregon coast. They noted strong signals on the seismometers that correlated with the presence of whales in the area.

Whale calls are reflected off the ocean floor.Some of the energy from these sounds is transmitted through the earth in the form of a seismic wave. This wave then travels through the oceanic crust, where it is reflected and refracted under the oceanic sediment.

If these waves are recorded on a seismometer,they can provide information about the structure of the earth's crust. Using a series of whale songs that were recorded by three seismometers, the researchers were able to pinpoint the whale's location and use the vibrations from the songs to create images of the layers of the earth's crust.

In particular, it was necessary in order to learn more about the physics of earthquakes in the region: about the behavior of sedimentary rocks and their relationship with thickness and speed.

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