A Unified Geodetic Vertical Velocity Field (UGVVF), Version 1.0

Tuesday, 16 December 2014
Gina Schmalzle and Shimon Wdowinski, University of Miami, Marine Geology and Geophysics, Miami, FL, United States
Tectonic motion, volcanic inflation or deflation, as well as oil, gas and water pumping can induce vertical motion. In southern California these signals are inter-mingled. In tectonics, properly identifying regions that are contaminated by other signals can be important when estimating fault slip rates. Until recently vertical deformation rates determined by high precision Global Positioning Systems (GPS) had large uncertainties compared to horizontal components and were rarely used to constrain tectonic models of fault motion. However, many continuously occupied GPS stations have been operating for ten or more years, often delivering uncertainties of ~1 mm/yr or less, providing better constraints for tectonic modeling. Various processing centers produced GPS time series and estimated vertical velocity fields, each with their own set of processing techniques and assumptions.

We compare vertical velocity solutions estimated by seven data processing groups as well as two combined solutions (Figure 1). These groups include: Central Washington University (CWU) and New Mexico Institute of Technology (NMT), and their combined solution provided by the Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO) through the UNAVCO website. Also compared are the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and Scripps Orbit and Permanent Array Center (SOPAC) and their combined solution provided as part of the NASA MEaSUREs project. Smaller velocity fields included are from Amos et al., 2014, processed at the Nevada Geodetic Laboratory, Shen et al., 2011, processed by UCLA and called the Crustal Motion Map 4.0 (CMM4) dataset, and a new velocity field provided by the University of Miami (UM). Our analysis includes estimating and correcting for systematic vertical velocity and uncertainty differences between groups. Our final product is a unified velocity field that contains the median values of the adjusted velocity fields and their uncertainties. This product will be periodically updated when new velocity fields become available. A database and scripts to access the database will be available through the University of Miami (http://www.geodesy.miami.edu) website.

Figure 1. Vertical velocity comparisons between processing groups (blue dots). Red line indicates equal velocities. Weighted Root Mean Square (WRMS) is shown.