PFO Facility Attributes



University of California, San Diego.


Quarter section of land (1/2 by 1/2 mile; 160 acres) adjacent to U.C. Natural Reserves property. Quarter-sections to the east, south-east, and south will not be developed and are available for temporary tests that do not involve permanent alterations.


(contact F. Wyatt for phone numbers) main facility phone, with both voice-mail and FAX capabilities.


Site superintendent on-call seven days a week; the site is visited daily for monitoring and adjustment of the systems.

Contacts: please contact first Frank Wyatt in San Diego for coordination of request with other activities;

Frank Wyatt
IGPP 0225
University of California, San Diego
9500 Gilman Dr.
La Jolla, CA 92093-0225

Every effort is made to keep a formal log of all site activities, and to disseminate this information to all research teams whose equipment might be affected.


Dial 911 at the site; fire station within three miles, but primary medical services are twenty miles away (for emergency room in Palm Desert take Highway 74 east to Highway 111 north, then take Bob Hope Drive to hospital).

Site Vehicles:

1000-gallon water trailer.

Aerial Access:

Large cleared and graveled area (``VLBI pad'') available for helicopter landing.


Water distribution (pressurized well-water) is available in and around the housing area in the NW corner of the property; could be plumbed elsewhere. Holding tank is approximately 2000 gallons; available for firefighting.


Granodiorite, heavily weathered at the surface (top meter or so), grading to sparse fracturing at depth (ref: Wyatt and Berger, JGR 85, 1980, and Fletcher et al. BSSA 80, 1990).


Main Power:

Single-phase 120/240 VAC distributed throughout the site (some 3-5 miles of network wiring).

Standby power:

30 kW standby 240/120 V motor-generator, with automated control and distributed load-shedding; propane powered (500 gallon tank).

UPS Power:

1 kW ``true'' UPS available in main recording facility for recording systems.

Smaller uninterruptible supplies available in several locations.



Four bunk beds in two rooms, refrigerator, stove, kitchen (with utensils etc.) and eating area, full bathroom (on septic system), heating/air-conditioning, and, of course, room on floors of the two side-by-side trailers for additional ``campers.''

Drinking water:

Drinking water supplied: 5-gallon containers and cooler.

Recording Systems:


PC-based, analog-input recorder (256-channel, 16-bit, +/- 10 V, 5-minute sampling) Data from this are downloaded regularly and unpacked in La Jolla, and are then accessible via ftp.


See ``telemetry'' below. Many other user-specific systems in place.

Strip Chart:

Four (4) dual-channel analog variable speed chart recorders (at this time).

Thirty-six (36) four-channel slow-speed impact recorders (144 channels total) displayed on-site for monitoring of data quality.

Local Signal Handling:

Most of the signals recorded from locations around the site are transmitted as analog voltages back to the central recording facility, where they are digitized. There is enough signal cable (about 30 miles in total) to route approximately 500 signal-pairs from all areas of the site. approximately 30 miles of network cabling. Standardized line-drivers, line-receivers, and modular power supplies are available for approximately 15-bit-quality analog data-transmission across the site. Electrical (60 Hz) ground-potential differences are of order 1.0 VAC across the site, well within the tolerances (common-mode rejection) of the signal handling electronics.

Telemetry Systems:

Internet connection:

HPWREN provides a 36 Mbps, HDX connection to the Internet (primarily) for streaming of continuous data back to San Diego.

At the site, a LAN between numerous vaults is available featuring 100 Mbps, FDX electrically isolated (fiber-optic) connectivity.

Other user-owned dedicated communications links also operate at the site.

Test and other Equipment on Site


Various oscilloscopes, DC power supplies, test-voltage generator, and the like.

Cables etc:

Test Cables; Connectors; RS-232 Computer Cables for test usage.


Electrical-component supplies (for onsite repair work) and a complete set of lab-bench tools are available for usage at the site.


Pneumatic and vacuum fittings, and a wide variety of (mechanical) spare parts can be found at the site.

Construction Equipment/Suplies


Hand tools (saws, wrenches, etc) and power tools (drills, drill-press, saws, concrete nail-setter, etc). About all common shop tools may be found somewhere at the site.

Remote Power:

Transportable 1 kW and 250 W generators available, along with a good assortment of extension cords (25-500 foot lengths).


External lights available for night work.


A-frame and block-and-tackle, chain-hoists available.


A variety of miscellaneous fasteners, wood, plumbing (PVC and metal), and electrical fittings (outlets and the like) are available in limited quantities.

Enclosures and Vaults:

Central Facility:

Two 50 foot long interconnected trailers are available for long-term housing of upright electronics racks, with bench space for desk-top equipment (PCs and the like), though room in these areas is getting scarce.

Buildings and Sheds:

There are about nine (9) air-conditioned enclosures at the site, of which eight (8) could be made available for additional usages.

About twenty-two (22) non-air conditioned sheds/enclosures at the site, of which about thirteen (13) are currently available.

An isolated metal paint-locker is available for storage of flammable liquids.

The trailer's annex (8 by 20 feet) and loading platforms are available for (temporary) storage and work on large instrumentation.


There are four (4) air-conditioned vaults at the site, of which three (3) are presently available for additional uses.

Five (5) non-air conditioned vaults at the site, of which three (3) are presently available for additional use.


The primary system for the site consists of a military-surplus hand-cranked phone network between the vaults.

Low-power hand-held radio, for use only outside of enclosures.

Test Boreholes:


There are five fully cased boreholes at the site, extending from depths of 25 to 120 m. (One 25 m hole is available at this time.)


There are seventeen (17) uncased holes, ranging in depths from 10 to 250 m, of which about eleven (11) are either available for additional use or are unoccupied.

Reference Systems:


An Iodine-stabilized He-Ne laser, with optical-fiber network for distribution/collection of light, is available for reference.


Several WWVB and GPS clocks in the recording facility are (possibly) available for additional use.

Coordinates/Survey Control:

Local: An aerial survey done 4/90 gives the locations of all major structures on the site to within +/- 0.2 feet horizontally and +/- 1 foot vertically. There are approximately 80 class-B monuments located (roughly) around the site's perimeter and regularly surveyed to (better than) first-order. Some of these are included in an approximately 14 km-width first-order NGS ``Pinyon Flat'' reference calibration network.

Global: Both the continuous GPS and VLBI points are part of the International Terrestrial Reference Frame. There is also a gravity pier at which occasional absolute gravity measurements have been made.


Air temperature, air pressure (micro- and regular barograph), precipitation, humidity.

Water Table:

Monitored in an array of boreholes; depth to ground-water approximately 25 m.

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