Field Testing GEOICE: A Next-Generation Polar Seismometer

Wednesday, 16 December 2015
Poster Hall (Moscone South)
Bruce C Beaudoin1, Jeremy Paul Winberry2, Audrey D Huerta2, Philip Chung1, Tim Parker3, Kent Randall Anderson4, Susan L Bilek5 and Paul Carpenter1, (1)IRIS PASSCAL Instrument Center, Socorro, NM, United States, (2)Central Washington University, Ellensburg, WA, United States, (3)Nanometrics Inc, Kanata, ON, Canada, (4)Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology, Seattle, WA, United States, (5)New Mexico Tech, Socorro, NM, United States
We report on the development of a new NSF MRI-community supported seismic observatory designed for studies in ice-covered regions – the Geophysical Earth Observatory for Ice Covered Environs (GEOICE). This project is motivated by the need to densify and optimize the collection of high-quality seismic data relevant to key solid Earth and cryosphere science questions.

The GEOICE instruments and their power and other ancillary systems are being designed to require minimal installation time and logistical load (i.e., size and weight), while maximizing ease-of-use in the field. The system is capable of advanced data handling and telemetry while being able to withstand conditions associated with icy environments, including cold/wet conditions and high-latitude solar limitations.

The instrument capability will include a hybrid seismograph pool of broadband and intermediate elements for observation of both long-period signals (e.g, long-period surface waves and slow sources) and intermediate-to-short-period signals (e.g., teleseismic body waves, local seismicity, and impulsive or extended glaciogenic signals).

Key features will include a design that integrates the seismometer and digitizer into a single, environmentally and mechanically robust housing; very low power requirements (~1 watt) for the intermediate-band systems; and advanced power systems that optimize battery capacity and operational limits. The envisioned ~100 element GEOICE instruments will nearly double the current polar inventory of stations and will be maintained and supported at the IRIS PASSCAL Instrument Center to ensure full and flexible peer-reviewed community use.

Prototype instruments are currently deployed in Antarctica and Alaska, with a larger Antarctic deployment planned for the 2015-2016 season. The results of these field tests will help to refine instrumentation design and lead to the production of robust and capable next-generation seismic sensors.