total internal reflection

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total internal reflection The reflection of a seismic wave from the boundary between the layer in which it is travelling and an adjacent layer. A wave in a low-velocity medium which strikes the inner surface of a boundary with a higher-velocity medium at an angle greater than the critical angle, and therefore is wholly reflected within the layer, is partially converted into another type of wave at the interface, rather than being refracted out of the layer. See S-WAVE.