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Here are some of the articles that have been recently posted to the PASSCAL website:

RefTek GPS Alert


Dear PASSCAL Users:

This note is to alert all past and current users of RefTek RT130 hardware that these instruments have been experiencing GPS failures in-field. To date, the failures are geographically confined to East Africa and symptoms include intermittent or total loss of timing.

It is worth noting that in reviewing close to two years of repair records, 1303 GPS have been returned to PIC from 69 experiments, excluding those in East Africa, and the total number of GPS units that needed any type of maintenance or repair was 30. There is no evidence at this time that there is a global problem with our RefTek GPS.

We are recommending that all users of PASSCAL RefTek RT130 dataloggers review their data and log files for signs of GPS failure that are consistent with the failures seen in East Africa. To identify failure behavior please visit this page for a brief tutorial. If you identify failures in your data, please contact passcal [at] passcal [dot] nmt [dot] edu and include "RT130 GPS failure" in the subject line and unit serial numbers in the body of the email.

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IRIS/PASSCAL Intern Caps Busy Summer with Alaska Deployment at Poker Flat

It's been a busy summer for IRIS/PASSCAL intern Kasey Aderhold, a PhD Candidate at the Department of Earth & Environment, Boston University. Kasey has been heavily involved in an ongoing comparison of seismic vaults to direct burial installations at two sites: the Dotson Ranch near Socorro, NM, and Poker Flat in Alaska. 

 

Seismic Community Gathers for SITS

The 2013 Seismic Instrumentation Technology Symposium (SITS) was held in Albuquerque, NM on June 10th and 11th, 2013.  The well-attended symposium provided a splendid opportunity for members of the seismic community to exchange knowledge on instrumentation, as well as on novel approaches for improving the usefulness of data.

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EarthScope/TA Featured on the Weather Channel

The EarthScope/Transportable Array program was highlighted on the Weather Channel in an April 26th report by correspondent Dave Malkoff, titled "A CT Scan for the Earth." The segment included the actual installation of an EarthScope/TA vault in Virginia, and featured appearances by several EarthScope/TA team members, a discussion on the need for computerized tomography of the earth's interior, and an animation of the effects of Hurricane Sandy as seen by the Transportable Array.

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Seismic Instrumentation Technology Symposium coming to Albuquerque on June 10-11, 2013

The next Seismic Instrumentation Technology Symposium (ITS2013) will be held in Albuquerque, NM on June 10th and 11th, 2013, at the Sheraton Albuquerque Airport Hotel.

The IRIS website has a page for the conference, with the agenda, participants, and registration form.

The theme of this symposium is to examine future technology, both from the perspective of capabilities scientists and engineers are seeking and the technologies that are, or will be, in the product pipeline of the seismic technology industry. The symposium will provide a forum for perspectives from both technology users and vendors and allow generous time for discussion and interaction.

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PASSCAL Staff in the News

It's been an eventful media week for several of the staff of IRIS PASSCAL, who were highlighted in a lengthy piece on women in science in the New Mexico Rural Electric Cooperative Association's magazine, enchantment, which is the second largest publication in New Mexico. Then, when a small earthquake rocked Socorro, more PASSCAL staff were prominently featured in a report on the quake in the local newspaper of record, El Defensor Chieftain.

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Freshman Senator Visits IRIS/PASSCAL

On Friday, February 22nd, New Mexico's newest member of the United States Senate, Martin Heinrich, paid a visit to New Mexico Tech, and the IRIS/PASSCAL Instrument Center. Senator Heinrich, who won his seat in the 2012 general election, is a strong advocate for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Education, and is the only engineer currently serving in the senate.

Senator Heinrich was given an overview of activities at the school by New Mexico Tech President Dr. Dan Lopez, and also toured the Mechanical Engineering Department.  Dr. Rick Aster escorted Sen. Heinrich on a tour of the PASSCAL Instrument Center, the world’s largest and the nation’s flagship federally-funded lending library of seismology equipment.

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IRIS PASSCAL Supports Fluvial Seismology Research in Grand Canyon

When and how do rivers transport sediment from eroding landscapes? New research by Brandon Schmandt and Karl Karlstrom of the University of New Mexico and Rick Aster of New Mexico Tech is shedding light on how seismology can address this fundamental problem. The PASSCAL Instrument Center provided several quick-deploy stations from its RAMP (Rapid Array Mobilization Program) pool in support of this innovative project. The panoramic view of the Grand Canyon above was taken during a December 2012 data recovery trip.

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Training at PASSCAL

In addition to loaning and maintaining devices from the instrument pool, and providing vital assistance to PIs in the field, PASSCAL also trains PIs and their colleagues at our facility in Socorro, New Mexico.  These training sessions can be intense, and typically last three days. The instruction is focused on the specific technical areas requested by PIs (such as data archival methods, or mastering the intricacies of specific sensors).

Training is important for both novice and well-seasoned PIs.  It provides hands-on interaction with the many types of instrumentation, software, and data handling that PASSCAL supplies, as well as the opportunity to ask questions that normally wouldn't come up until the PI is deploying equipment in the field.  Training at PASSCAL provides PIs with the opportunity to have their questions answered immediately by our on-site knowledgeable staff.

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Facility Plan for Polar Seismic and Geodetic Science is Available

The seismic and geodetic Polar communities have worked with IRIS and UNAVCO to provide a plan for the growth, development, management and governance of Polar support services for the NSF facilities. This plan is now complete and posted on the IRIS webpage.

Here is the executive summary from the report:

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