A teleseismic P-wave will generate P to S conversions at crustal boundaries beneath the seismograph. The difference in travel time between the generated S-wave and P-wave contains information about the distance to the boundary and if further reverberations are included more detailed structure can be resolved. This is done by deconvolution of the incoming vertical and longitudinal components of the seismogram which removes the common part of the components - namely, the source and travel path information. The resulting waveform is the receiver function.
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