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UNAVCO Project Life Cycle

The implementation of a GPS project is collaborative involving the Principal Investigators (PIs), UNAVCO staff and others. UNAVCO supported projects typically undergo a life cycle defined by the distinct phases described below.

Request Support / Development & Testing / System Design, Assembly, Shipping / Station Installation / Software Development

Training / Permanent Station Installation, Operations & Maintenance / Data Management & Archiving

Technical planning and budget development for proposals. UNAVCO provides technical consultation, planning and budgeting help to PIs in developing proposals that include high-precision GNSS. PIs are encouraged to contact UNAVCO as early in the proposal development process as possible. Engineering and Equipment Services Group members normally respond to PI support requests and provide the primary point of contact for PIs. The principal objective of this early UNAVCO involvement is to help PIs develop effective, cost effective plans for achieving objectives.

Pre-deployment planning, preparation and training. Upon funding notification by a relevant EAR program, PIs are again encouraged to contact UNAVCO as soon as possible to develop a project schedule, and to reserve equipment and staff time. A staff member is normally assigned as the primary point of contact to assist the PI in developing a detailed project implementation plan that assures current technical, logistical, financial, safety and other best practices are considered and adhered to. Integration, testing and assembly of equipment for shipping are coordinated. Technical, procedural and equipment training my be provided.

GNSS data collection and network operation and maintenance. UNAVCO staff are available to support the deployment phase of projects either by accompanying and supporting the PI in the field or by providing technical support and consultation remotely. Investigators often request infield assistance initially until they are comfortable with equipment and technical procedures. In some cases, experienced PIs are capable and desire to operate independently, though in many other cases UNAVCO support is requested through the entire data collection phase, where UNAVCO may often take on full project management responsibilities. For investigations involving permanent or semi-permanent occupation modes, UNAVCO helps to develop plans to monitor network data flow. UNAVCO often assumes a first-response troubleshooting role and works in conjunction with the PI to support any required infield maintenance in the most efficient manner, depending on where the project may be located and whether personnel are available locally.

Data preprocessing and distribution. Data from campaign, semi-permanent or permanent occupations are reformatted, verified and distributed to users. UNAVCO typically handles these tasks, though reformatting and some verification tasks are sometimes handled by the PI. The often unrewarding task of verifying all data and metadata is essential to achieving desired geodetic results, especially given highly automated data post processing that is typically employed on the permanent station networks.

Data processing and scientific analysis. Though UNAVCO helps facilitate PI collaborations and Community support for data processing training, PIs independently process, analyze and interpret their own data. Questions can arise about problematic data, however, and UNAVCO stafff often called upon for technical consultation.

Archiving of data and science products. NSF requires that all GPS data collected under NSF-EAR funded programs be submitted to the UNAVCO archive for long-term storage and availability. UNAVCO maintains capability to handle continuous data flow from permanent stations as well as campaign project data that require significant manual handling and verification. Access to various data sets is supported by online or near line systems. Position solution, position velocities, and other derived products can also be requested for archiving.


Last modified: 2019-12-24  01:31:44  America/Denver