Subterranean ground motion studies for the Einstein Telescope

M.G. Beker, J.F.J. van den Brand, D.S. Rabeling

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Seismic motion limits the low-frequency sensitivity of ground-based gravitational wave detectors. A conceptual design study into the feasibility of a future-generation gravitational wave observatory, coined the Einstein Telescope, has been completed. As part of this design phase, we performed a ground motion study to determine the seismic noise characteristics at various sites across the globe. This investigation focused on underground sites and encompassed a variety of geologies, including clay, salt, and hard rock, at 15 locations in nine European countries, the USA, and Japan. In addition, we analyzed data from the Virtual European Broadband Seismograph Network to characterize European seismic motion. We show that, in the region of interest for future-generation gravitational wave detectors (1-10 Hz), seismic motion is dominated by activity from anthropogenic sources. A number of sites were found that exhibited a reduction in seismic power of several orders of magnitude with respect to current detector sites, thus making it possible to set requirements for the Einstein Telescope seismic noise environment.
Original languageEnglish
Article number025002
Pages (from-to)025002
JournalClassical and Quantum Gravity
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2015


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