Geodetic GPS station P311 atop the Sierra Nevada mountains at Coyote Ridge, at an elevation of 3,699 meters, near Bishop, California. This station and many others show that these mountains are currently uplifting at 1–2 millimeters per year. (Image courtesy of Shawn Lawrence, UNAVCO.)

Exploring a Changing Continent Using a Plate Boundary Observatory


Geodesy is the science of measuring the size, shape, and gravity field of Earth, and how these change with time.
15 years

Fifteen Years of Earth Science Exploration


The EarthScope National Office
location of speaker series

Education Corner: Final inSights Issue


Sharing Science through the EarthScope Speaker Series and Save the Date for the EarthScope Legacy Education and Outreach Virtual Workshop


EarthScope video intro

New EarthScope Video!


15 Years of Geoscience Discovery and Education in North America
top 10

EarthScope Top 10 Discoveries


Station RLAP

PBO Station Highlight: A Puzzle in the Midcontinent


What causes earthquakes in the interior of North America, far from plate boundaries?
Lidar data shown as vegetated landscape and as hillshade (bare surface).

EarthScope’s Laser Vision: Sharing Lidar Data


High-resolution images reveal fault movement—before and after quakes—to experts and students 
InSights announcements banner

EarthScope Announcements


inSights Spring 2018
The El Mayor-Cucapah earthquake rupture across a road

PBO Station Highlight: P496 Is Only One Piece of the Story


PBO station P496 not only shook during the 7.2 El Mayor–Cucapah earthquake in northwestern Mexico, but moved permanently as a result of it.
Science Fair season is coming soon, giving students a chance to explore hands-on science. (Photo by Molly Tedesche)

Education Corner


Science Fair season is coming soon, giving students a chance to explore hands-on science. (Photo by Molly Tedesche)

In every inSights issue, we feature a few of the dozens of


Spatial variation in slip rate during 1984-1998 inferred from characteristically repeating microearthquakes. The 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake led to a long-term acceleration of fault slip. The yellow star is the 1998 Mw 5.1 SJB earthquake.

Creeps and starts on the San Andreas fault near San Juan Bautista


Want to dig deeper? Click on the "advanced" button in the article for scientific details.
P472: Engineering for Earthquakes

P472: Engineering for Earthquakes


PBO Station Highlight October 2017
Teaching Teachers at Alaska Earthquake Center, Fairbanks. (Credit M.Agopian)

Education Corner


In every InSights issue, ESNO features two of the dozens of tools, modules, and activities that utilize EarthScope data to benefit a wide variety of users (K–12, university educators, informal programs like museums or after-school programs).
UNAVCO Data Tools

Data Tools


Introducing a new how-to video series for accessing UNAVCO's geodetic data
PBO Station P085

P085: Tiny Motions Matter


PBO Station Highlight Summer 2017
Ghost Forest

EarthScope's Final National Meeting


A culmination of 15 years of expansive geoscience research
PBO Site

AB50: Quick Responder


PBO Station Highlight May 2017
P208 in California. Credit UNAVCO

Salt Canyon, California


PBO Station P208 watches the grass grow...literally
PBO monument P360 uses GPS technology to monitor snow depth in Island Park, Montana. This station, powered by a solar panel, is one of 100 used by researchers to measure snow depth using GPS. Credit: UNAVCO

Improving Snow-Depth Forecasting with EarthScope’s Plate Boundary Observatory


by Gail McCormick - Winter 2017

USA STEM Festival, 2016

Winter 2017 Education Corner


In every InSights issue, ESNO features two of the dozens of tools, modules, and activities that utilize EarthScope data to benefit a wide variety of users (K–12, university educators, informal programs like museums or after-school programs)


Borehole strainmeter B030, Fall Creek, Oregon.

Fall Creek, Oregon


Borehole strainmeter B030 records slip around the world
Instruments near the summit of Mount St. Helens capture its every move. (photo credit: Beth Bartel, UNAVCO)

Watching a Volcano Breathe


Plate Boundary Observatory monitoring networks on Mount St. Helens
USA STEM Festival, 2016

Fall 2016 Education Corner


For every InSights issue, we feature two of the dozens of tools, modules, and activities that utilize EarthScope data to benefit a wide variety of users. We intend to reach K–12 and university educators, as well as informal programs like museums.
PBO station Highlight

Triangulation Point, Oregon


PBO Station P405 battles the elements at an energetic plate boundary
PBO AC55 station

Creeping Calamity


Using the Plate Boundary Observatory to monitor landslide motion. GPS Station AC55 in Alaska was moving more than expected. Some movement was normal due to tectonic plate movement and residual motion from previous earthquakes—other GPS stations...
Vertical velocities predicted by model selection (statistical, s-model) using GPS data and the best-fitting physical deformation model (p- model) simulating the vertical crustal response of earthquake cycle loading at depth throughout the past 300 or more years.

The Vertical Fingerprint of Earthquake Cycle Loading in Southern California


Science Nugget - By Bridget Smith-Konter (University of Hawaii at Manoa), David Sandwell (Scripps Institution of Oceanography), Xiaopeng Tong (University of Washington…

Sliced view of present-day (calendar year 2011) Coulomb stress accumulation model of the San Andreas Fault System based on interseismic stress accumulation rate model.

Locked, Loaded and Looming?


Exploring earthquake cycle stress history of seismically active faults of the San Andreas Fault System
PBO Station AV03

Augustine Island, Alaska


PBO Station AV03 Takes a Blow
UNAVCO banner

2016 UNAVCO Science Workshop


New Uses for the Plate Boundary Observatory


The 2002 Denali earthquake surface rupture crosses alluvial fans, as imaged in EarthScope lidar data.

Drawing Lines from the Air


High-resolution Topographic Data Comes of Age
Installing a continuous GPS station at Macmillan Pass, Canada.

Mackenzie Mountains Mystery: New EarthScope Project Peers Underneath an Unlikely Mountain Range


By Kerry Klein - Winter 2016

At first blush, the Mackenzie Mountains in northern Canada could be the Rocky Mountains’ long lost sibling. They appear just as angular and…

Station AC46

Back to Mothership


How PBO data get from Everywhere to somewhere
The accelerometer installed at P248, clamped to the vertical leg of the GPS monument. (Photo Doerte Mann, UNAVCO)

Low-Cost Additions to the Plate Boundary Observatory for Earthquake Early Warning


By Doerte Mann and Beth Bartel - Spring 2015

One of the major benefits of the Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) is its contribution to prototype Earthquake Early Warning systems (EEW).

Earthscope Globe

EarthScope Science and Disaster Preparedness


Engaging Educators in EarthScope Science and Disaster Preparedness Through Professional Development Workshops in Coastal Cascadia


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Teaching Educators: PBO Data and Classroom Resources


by UNAVCO - Fall 2014

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Workshop Report: Modern and Ancient Basement Arches and the Connection to Flat Slab Subduction


By Megan Anderson (CC), Kate Miller (TAMU), Susan Beck (UA), and Margarete Jadamec (UH) - Fall 2014

The structural dissimilarity between basement-involved arches and thin…

Earthscope Globe

Stability of PBO GPS Monument Types


Project Highlight
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PBO Weighs California’s Water Resources


By Donald Argus, Yuning Fu, and Felix Landerer - Summer 2014

Approximately 500 sites in California, most of which are part of the Plate Boundary Observatory, are weighing…

Dark, ash-covered snow near the summit of Shishaldin Volcano in the Aleutians is evidence of ongoing low-level eruptive activity near PBO’s AV37 GPS station. (Photo/Ryan Bierma, UNAVCO)

Helicopter Fieldwork in the PBO Alaska Region


By Ellie Boyce - Summer 2014

With high-elevation GPS stations melting out of the snow and the weather becoming milder, the PBO Alaska region began annual helicopter-based…


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Hitting Hot Water with PBO Borehole Strainmeters in the Yellowstone Caldera


By Glen Mattioli and David Mencin - Winter 2014

Data from the Yellowstone Gladwin Tensor strainmeter (GTSM) network are improving the understanding of the structure of…

Earthscope Globe

Monitoring Surface Deformation at Long Valley Caldera, California


By Kang Hyeun Ji - Fall 2013

Continuous monitoring of volcanic activity provides a way to detect changes from usual activity, provide warning impending eruptions, and…

Earthscope Globe

PBO Multiple Monument Comparison Project


By UNAVCO - Summer 2013

PBO Change Order 35 authorized UNAVCO to construct two additional geodetic monuments at five existing PBO stations in order to test and compare…

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Deformation of the Wasatch Fault System


Plate Boundary Observatory Data


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PBO GPS Updates


By Glen Mattioli, UNAVCO - Fall 2012

Currently, there are 1120 GPS sites and 28 tilt meters, as well as numerous other strainmeters actively measuring deformation. In…

Earthscope Globe

Tales from the Field: PBO Installation in Alaska


Max Enders - Spring 2012

When UNAVCO set about building the Earthscope Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) no challenge was nearly as daunting as the prospect of installing…

Earthscope Globe

Spring 2012 Facilities Status


Spring 2012

USArray Status

The Transportable Array (TA) continues to roll eastward across the US. Having crossed the Mississippi River in March 2011, the TA will…


Earthscope Globe

Using GPS to Measure Soil Moisture, Snow Depth and Vegetation Growth


GPS data collected as part of PBO, though, contain additional information that is very useful in ways unforeseen when the original PBO science plan was created.