Dictionary.com

Rayleigh wave

Save This Word!

noun Mechanics, Geology.
a wave along the surface of a solid, elastic body, especially along the surface of the earth.
QUIZ
WILL YOU SAIL OR STUMBLE ON THESE GRAMMAR QUESTIONS?
Smoothly step over to these common grammar mistakes that trip many people up. Good luck!
Question 1 of 7
Fill in the blank: I can’t figure out _____ gave me this gift.

Origin of Rayleigh wave

First recorded in 1915–20; named after J. W. S. Rayleigh
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use Rayleigh wave in a sentence

Scientific definitions for Rayleigh wave

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 © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
FEEDBACK