Development of the TLALOCNet GPS-Met Network in Northwestern Mexico: Supporting Continuous Water Vapor Observations of the North American Monsoon
Abstract:TLALOCNet is a combined atmospheric and tectonic cGPS-Met network in Mexico designed for the investigation of climate, atmospheric processes, the earthquake cycle, and tectonics. While EarthScope-Plate Boundary Observatory (conterminous US, Alaska, Puerto Rico) is among the networks poised to become a nucleus for hemisphere-scale GPS observations, the completion of TLALOCNet at the end of 2015 will close a gap between PBO and other Latin American GPS networks that include COCONet (Central America, Caribbean, and Northern South America), CAnTO, CAP, and IGS extending from Alaska to Patagonia.
The National Science Foundation funded the construction and operation of TLALOCNet, with significant matching funds and resources provided by the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM). The project will involve the construction or refurbishment of 38 cGPS-Met stations in Mexico built to PBO standards. The first three TLALOCNet stations were installed in the northern Mexican states of Sonora and Chihuahua in July 2014, following the North American Monsoon GPS Transect Experiment 2013. Together these observations better characterize critical components of water transport in the region. Data from these stations are now available through the UNAVCO data archive and can be downloaded from http://facility.unavco.org/data/dai2/app/dai2.html#. By the end of 2014, TLALOCNet data, together with complementary data from other regional cGPS networks in Mexico, will also be openly available through a Mexico-based data center.
We will present the status of the project to date, including an overview of the station hardware, data communications, data flow, construction schedule, and science objectives. We will also present some of the challenges encountered, including regional logistics, shipping and importation, site security, and other issues associated with the construction and operation of a large continuous GPS network.