Research PG


Contact Details

The University of Aberdeen Meston Building - Room 127

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PHD student in the university of Aberdeen in the department of Geology and Petroleum Geology (2014-now)


Professional master in 'Environmental Restoration and Ecological Engineering' (2013)

Master degree in ' Geology with Geophysics' (2011-2013)

Bachelor degree in 'Geology' (2000-2013)


Current Research

Title: Ambient seismic noise imaging applied to the Faroe Islands and North Sea

The recent development of ambient seismic noise imaging offers the potential  for  obtaining detailed images of the crust. The resolution is largely controlled by the configuration of the seismometer network rather than by the distribution of earthquakes, which has been a limitation of traditional passive seismic imaging methods. In this approach, each station can be viewed as a “virtual source” of seismic energy that is recorded by every other station in the network. Cross-correlation of long term recordings  from station pairs reveals  an  "empirical “Green’s function” which is related to the impulse response of the Earth between the two stations. Here, we present preliminary ambient noise imaging results from a recent broadband deployment in the Faroe Islands, which is approximately equidistant from Norway, Scotland and Iceland and lies to the northwest of the North Sea. The relatively small number of stations (14), means that the dataset is ideal for developing and testing the methodology that we will apply to the much larger North Sea dataset (>50 stations). In order to obtain cross-correlations with high signal-to-noise ratios, we apply phase weighted stacking, which is shown to be a significant improvement over conventional linear stacking. Furthermore, we use phase-match filtering to optimise the extraction of traveltime information from the surface wave dispersion analysis. An iterative non-linear inversion scheme is used to invert interstation traveltimes to obtain group velocity maps from 1s to 20s period. Although the results are preliminary, and further assessment of their robustness is required, initial indications are that the Faroe Islands is underlain by a distinct low velocity zone, which is consistent with the presence of sedimentary rock beneath a thick surface layer of basalt. These results will be verified and enhanced by computing phase velocity maps, and performing a second inversion step to solve for 3-D shear wavespeed.  Subsequent application to the North Sea dataset will be challenging due to the highly attenuative nature of the crust in this region, which has previously been observed to dramatically reduce the signal-to-noise ratio of short period surface waves. However, preliminary indications are that, with the help of phase-weighted stacking, good quality empirical Green's functions can be retrieved.


Nicholas Rawlinson

David Cornwell :


I have also a collaboration with the University of Edinburgh and in particular:

Andrew Curtis:  

Erica Galetti:     

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