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Rayleigh wave

noun, Mechanics, Geology.
a wave along the surface of a solid, elastic body, especially along the surface of the earth.
Origin of Rayleigh wave
First recorded in 1915-20; named after J. W. S. Rayleigh Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Rayleigh wave in Science
Rayleigh wave  
A type of seismic surface wave that moves with a rolling motion that consists of a combination of particle motion perpendicular and parallel to the main direction of wave propagation. The amplitude of this motion decreases with depth. Like primary waves, Rayleigh waves are alternatingly compressional and extensional (they cause changes in the volume of the rocks they pass through). Rayleigh waves travel slower than Love waves.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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