About Us History Organization President Executive Office & Senior Management Business Affairs Education & Community Engagement Publications, Internal Reports, & White Papers Geodetic Data Services Geodetic Infrastructure UNAVCO Logo & Usage Policies

About Us

Mission Statement

UNAVCO, a non-profit university-governed consortium, facilitates geoscience research and education using geodesy.

UNAVCO Core Values

UNAVCO’s core values are built upon the foundation of scientific and professional integrity. In order to accomplish our mission of research and education, as a community and science support organization, we value:

  • Advancement of community science goals and their relevance to society
  • Excellence, innovation, and cooperation in science, technology, education, and service
  • Open access to data products and scientific exchange
  • Data preservation and stewardship for future science and society
  • Transparent community governance
  • Cultivation of diverse scientific, educational, and social perspectives
  • Efficient and effective use of resources
  • Strong service ethic and “can do” attitude


Geodesy is the study of Earth’s shape, gravity field, and rotation. Geodetic research defines the terrestrial reference frame; and quantifies changes in the properties of Earth’s surface and subsurface, ice sheets and glaciers, and oceans and atmosphere. Geodesy’s broader benefits include help with preparedness and mitigation of hazards; and foundational support for space-based operations, navigation, communications, surveying, resource management, and national security. Read more about our community's Science.

The GAGE Facility

Since 2013, UNAVCO has operated the national Earth Science geodetic facility, under an award from the National Science Foundation (NSF), which includes core support from both NSF and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The Facility is known as the Geodetic Facility for the Advancement of Geoscience (GAGE), under a renewal award informally called GAGE2 to distinguish it from the previous award which ran from October 2013 to September 2018. All core activities are now integrated under this umbrella. The GAGE Facility provides support to the NSF investigator community for geodesy, Earth Sciences research, education and workforce development with broad societal benefits. NSF-funded geodesy investigators are active on every continent, across a broad spectrum of the geosciences and facilitated by UNAVCO data, engineering, and education services.

Supporting services include:

  • (1) Operation of the Network of the Americas (NOTA), which integrates a number of existing networks that include the Plate Boundary Observatory (PBO, an integrated set of geodetic systems including continuously operating Global Navigation Satellite Systems (cGNSS) receivers, real-time GNSS, borehole strainmeters, tiltmeters and seismometers, and metpacks), as well as COCONET and TLALOCNet (GNSS in the Caribbean region and Mexico, respectively);
  • (2) Engineering, instrumentation, and data services to NSF-funded investigators who use terrestrial and satellite geodetic technologies (e.g., TLS, GNSS, and InSAR) in Earth science research as well as Geosciences more broadly;
  • (3) Operations to support NSF-funded community GNSS networks for Earth, atmospheric, and polar science applications, and the NASA's Global GNSS Network (GGN); and
  • (4) PI planning support and core programs to advance geoscience education resources and geodesy community engagement.

NSF's Earth Sciences Division (EAR) and Office of Polar Programs (OPP) fund facility support for PI geodesy research and GPS/GNSS networks around the world, including Greenland and Antarctica, while NASA funds support for operations of the GGN and the activities of the IGS Central Bureau that make millimeter-level global geodesy possible.

Community and Services

The UNAVCO consortium Membership consists of more than 100 US Full Members and over 80 Associate Members (domestic and international). Through our Geodetic Infrastructure and Geodetic Data Services Programs, UNAVCO operates and supports geodetic networks, geophysical and meteorological instruments, a free and open data archive, software tools for data access and processing, cyberinfrastructure management, technological developments, technical support, and geophysical training. Our Education and Community Engagement Program provides educational materials, tools and resources for students, teachers, university faculty and the general public. We also provide summer internship experiences for undergraduate students interested in careers in geodesy and geosciences through our RESESS program. Find out more about our Community, Projects, Instrumentation, Data, Software, Science, and Education services, assistance, and support.

Brief History

UNAVCO originated as the University NAVSTAR Consortium in 1984 within the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at the University of Colorado, Boulder. In 2001, UNAVCO, Inc, became an independent 501(c)(3) organization. Read more about our History.

Offices and Staff

UNAVCO is headquartered in Boulder, Colorado with regional offices in San Clemente, California, Portland, Oregon, and Anchorage, Alaska. Geoscience and engineering staff are deployed on assignments throughout the United States and around the world and seasonally in the Arctic and Antarctica. Read more about our Organization, Governance or Employment Opportunities.

UNAVCO Logo & Usage Policies

Various templates for the UNAVCO Logo & Usage Policies are available.

Corporate Information


Last modified: 2020-07-28  17:12:35  America/Denver