A selection of GPS/GNSS stations in the Network of the Americas have found themselves with new friends this year—corner reflectors installed for a satellite calibration/validation mission. NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s OPERA project is working on a new set of satellite data products for surface water, surface disturbance, and surface displacement.
To facilitate calibration of InSAR ground displacement measurements, corner reflectors have been deployed next to NOTA stations along the San Andreas Fault, allowing the JPL team to compare satellite-measured displacement to the GPS/GNSS station data. You can learn more in this video from the first install in May.
These corner reflectors are constructed to appear as a consistently bright spot in radar imagery, allowing for precise measurements of a fixed and unchanging object. Although unusually wet California weather prevented access to some of these sites in spring and early summer, additional installs occurred near other NOTA stations in June and July. A successful collaboration with JPL!