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Sample records for central death valley

  1. Volcano-Tectonic Evolution of the Central Death Valley Volcanic Field - Insights Derived from the Geologic Map of the Death Valley Junction 30' x 60' Quadrangle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thompson, R. A.; Fridrich, C.; Chan, C. F.; Zellman, K. L.; Workman, J. B.

    2014-12-01

    The geologic map of the Death Valley Junction 30' x 60' quadrangle encompasses many geologic features recording the Cenozoic volcano-tectonic evolution of central Death Valley. Most notable is the central Death Valley rhombochasm. The rhombochasm is a 65x80-km rhombic pull-apart basin complex that occupies the releasing step-over between the northern Death Valley—Furnace Creek and southern Death Valley faults. Stewart (1983) documented this feature by palinspastically restoring offset thrust fault segments and isopachs, thereby closing the rhombochasm. The central Death Valley volcanic field records the coincident and related magmatism that occurred during the extension and strike-slip strain that formed the rhombochasm. In the multi-stage evolution of this tectonomagmatic feature, changes in volcanic and structural styles, rates, and loci were synchronized, both spatially and temporally. The volcanic field covers an area of 3600 km2, and consists of >700 km3 of lava flows, domes, and pyroclastic deposits. Cenozoic map units reflect four major eruptive stages: Stage 1 (11-9 Ma: rhyolite and andesite), Stage 2 (9-7.5 Ma: dacite>basalt>andesite), Stage 3 (7-5 Ma: dacite>basalt), and Stage 4 (4.5-0.7 Ma: basalt). The predominant loci of eruptive centers migrated northwestward during this volcanic evolution, coeval with northwestward migration of adjacent depocenters. Stage 1 and 2 volcanism is broadly correlative to the supradetachment stage of rhombochasm development. Related intrusions include exposed upper-plate hypabyssal and lower-plate plutonic bodies. Stage 3 and 4 volcanism occurred during two tectonic stages in which higher-angle faults cut across the detachment fault, forming basins that are nested within the original detachment-floored area of the rhombochasm. Time-transgressive changes from dominantly silicic and intermediate magmas in Stages 1 and 2 to dominantly mafic and lesser intermediate magmas in Stages 3 and 4 coincided with decreases in eruptive volumes and rates. As a result, early syn-detachment basin fill in the rhombochasm is dominantly volcanic, whereas post-detachment basin-fill is mainly sedimentary. Only the westernmost part of the rhombochasm is still tectonically active, reflected in Quaternary faulting of young basin fill in central Death Valley.

  2. Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    This is an image of Death Valley, California, centered at 36.629 degrees north latitude, 117.069 degrees west longitude. The image shows Furnace Creek alluvial fan and Furnace Creek Ranch at the far right, and the sand dunes near Stove Pipe Wells at the center. The dark fork-shaped feature between Furnace Creek fan and the dunes is a smooth flood-plain which encloses Cottonball Basin. The bright dots near the center of the image are corner refectors that have been set-up to calibrate the radar as the Shuttle passes overhead with the SIR-C/X-SAR system. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory alternative photo number is P-43883.

  3. Death Valley California as seen from STS-59

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    This oblique handheld Hasselblad 70mm photo shows Death Valley, near California's border with Nevada. The valley -- the central feature of Death Valley National Monument -- extends north to south for some 140 miles (225 kilometers). Hemmed in to the east by the Amargosa Range and to the west by the Panamints, its width varies from 5 to 15 miles (8 to 24 kilometers).

  4. Age and Elevations of High-Level OIS2 Pluvial Lake Manly Shorelines, Northern and Central Death Valley: Implications for Lacustrine Sequence Stratigraphy in Southern Death Valley and the OIS6 Pluvial Lake Level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caskey, S.; Lackey, H. G.; Klinger, R. E.; Wan, E.; Sarna-Wojcicki, A.

    2006-12-01

    New 14C ages of algal tufa from high-level Lake Manly shorelines at the Beatty Bar Complex (BBC) in Northern Death Valley (NDV) and on the west flank of the Black Mountains in Central Death Valley (CDV) indicate that shoreline features at elevations of up to 46 m and 61 m, respectively, formed during the latest- Pleistocene, OIS2 pluvial-lake cycle rather than the earlier OIS6 lake cycle as commonly interpreted. In-situ algal tufa clast coatings in the highest shoreline gravel bar at the BBC yielded an age of 26.97±0.62 14C kyrs B.P. The prominent horizon of tufa coatings lies ~1.5 m below the bar crest (46 m) and is interpreted to mark the static elevation of the OIS2 Lake Manly highstand. The tufa age is consistent with the gravel bar's youthful geomorphic expression and generally weak soil development, a previously reported TL age of 24.0±2.5 ka from fine-grained lagoonal(?) deposits behind this same gravel bar (45 m), a thinolitc-tufa age of 16.40-15.75 cal yrs B.P. from Mesquite Flat (37 m), and U-series ages (9.6±3.3 and 30.1±3.3 ka) and associated deep-lake ostracodes from core in CDV. In CDV, 2.5 km north of Badwater, prominent shoreline beach rock and algal tufa lie in deposition against the steep footwall escarpment of Black Mountains fault zone (BMFZ) to an elevation of ~61 m. Algal tufa collected at ~55 m yielded an age of 24.55±0.33 14C kyrs B.P. indicating that OIS2 Lake Manly highstand shorelines in CDV now lie at least 15 m higher than in NDV. The lack of major vertical-slip-rate faults in NDV suggests absolute footwall uplift adjacent to the prominent BMFZ (ala Borah Peak) may account for the difference. In Southern Death Valley (SDV), new mapping and tephra ages have defined a series of 3 lacustrine sequences well exposed along eastern traces of the Southern Death Valley fault zone (SDVFZ): 1) a lower sequence of highly-folded, late-Pliocene strata containing ~3.4 Ma Mesquite Springs tephra (correlative to strata in the eastern Noble Hills); 2) a gently- folded middle sequence of early-to-middle-Pleistocene strata containing Glass Mountain (1.2-0.9 Ma) and Lava Creek (0.64 Ma) tephra (age-correlative to strata in the Confidence Hills); and 3) a non-folded upper sequence, which is not dated, but clearly unconformably overlies the folded middle sequence. The upper sequence also shows only minor displacement along the SDVFZ. The upper sequence lies at a maximum elevation of ~45 m, the same as the BBC highstand gravel bar 100 km to the north. Hence, we correlate the undeformed upper lacustrine sequence in SDV to the OIS2 phase of Lake Manly. Although previously dated OIS6 shorelines (120-186 ka) along the Black Mountains escarpment lie at an elevation of ~90 m, we have yet to identify an OIS6 sequence of lacustrine deposits in SDV. Again, following the concept of absolute footwall uplift along the BMFZ, it is possible that the OIS6 Lake Manly highstand was considerably lower than 90 m and didn't spill into SDV. A relatively lower OIS6 lake level (<46 m OIS2) is consistent with our current understanding of the regional paleohydrology. During the OIS6 lake phase, the Amargosa River terminated in Lake Tecopa, and major flow into Death Valley was perhaps limited to spillover from the Owens-Searles- Panamint lake chain. During the OIS2 lake phase, both the Amargosa and Mojave rivers flowed into Death Valley.

  5. Navigating the valley of death

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dacey, James

    2014-11-01

    Taking an innovation from the lab to the market is hard in any discipline, but physics start-ups face some unique challenges crossing the so-called "valley of death". James Dacey speaks to scientists and business professionals in the Boston area of the US who have dared to take on this journey.

  6. The Central Valley Hydrologic Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faunt, C.; Belitz, K.; Hanson, R. T.

    2009-12-01

    Historically, California’s Central Valley has been one of the most productive agricultural regions in the world. The Central Valley also is rapidly becoming an important area for California’s expanding urban population. In response to this competition for water, a number of water-related issues have gained prominence: conjunctive use, artificial recharge, hydrologic implications of land-use change, subsidence, and effects of climate variability. To provide information to stakeholders addressing these issues, the USGS made a detailed assessment of the Central Valley aquifer system that includes the present status of water resources and how these resources have changed over time. The principal product of this assessment is a tool, referred to as the Central Valley Hydrologic Model (CVHM), that simulates surface-water flows, groundwater flows, and land subsidence in response to stresses from human uses and from climate variability throughout the entire Central Valley. The CVHM utilizes MODFLOW combined with a new tool called “Farm Process” to simulate groundwater and surface-water flow, irrigated agriculture, land subsidence, and other key processes in the Central Valley on a monthly basis. This model was discretized horizontally into 20,000 1-mi2 cells and vertically into 10 layers ranging in thickness from 50 feet at the land surface to 750 feet at depth. A texture model constructed by using data from more than 8,500 drillers’ logs was used to estimate hydraulic properties. Unmetered pumpage and surface-water deliveries for 21 water-balance regions were simulated with the Farm Process. Model results indicate that human activities, predominately surface-water deliveries and groundwater pumping for irrigated agriculture, have dramatically influenced the hydrology of the Central Valley. These human activities have increased flow though the aquifer system by about a factor of six compared to pre-development conditions. The simulated hydrology reflects spatial and temporal variability in climate, land-use changes, and available surface-water deliveries. For example, the droughts of 1976-77 and 1987-92 led to reduced streamflow and surface-water deliveries and increased evapotranspiration and groundwater pumpage throughout most of the valley, resulting in a decrease in groundwater storage. Since the mid-1990s, annual surface-water deliveries generally have exceeded groundwater pumpage, resulting in an increase or no change in groundwater storage throughout most of the valley. However, groundwater is still being removed from storage during most years in the southern part of the Central Valley. The CVHM is designed to be coupled with Global Climate Models to forecast the potential supply of surface-water deliveries, demand for groundwater pumpage, potential subsidence, and changes in groundwater storage in response to different climate-change scenarios. The detailed database on texture properties coupled with CVHM's ability to simulate the combined effects of recharge and discharge make CVHM particularly useful for assessing water-management plans, such as conjunctive water use, conservation of agriculture land, and land-use change. In the future, the CVHM could be used in conjunction with optimization models to help evaluate water-management alternatives to effectively utilize the available water resources.

  7. 36 CFR 7.26 - Death Valley National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Death Valley National... INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.26 Death Valley National Monument. (a) Mining. Mining in Death Valley National Monument is subject to the following regulations, which...

  8. 36 CFR 7.26 - Death Valley National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Death Valley National... INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.26 Death Valley National Monument. (a) Mining. Mining in Death Valley National Monument is subject to the following regulations, which...

  9. 36 CFR 7.26 - Death Valley National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Death Valley National... INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.26 Death Valley National Monument. (a) Mining. Mining in Death Valley National Monument is subject to the following regulations, which...

  10. 36 CFR 7.26 - Death Valley National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Death Valley National... INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.26 Death Valley National Monument. (a) Mining. Mining in Death Valley National Monument is subject to the following regulations, which...

  11. 36 CFR 7.26 - Death Valley National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Death Valley National... INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.26 Death Valley National Monument. (a) Mining. Mining in Death Valley National Monument is subject to the following regulations, which...

  12. Surficial Geologic Map of the Death Valley Junction 30' x 60' Quadrangle, California and Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Slate, Janet L.; Berry, Margaret E.; Menges, Christopher M.

    2009-01-01

    This surficial geologic map of the Death Valley Junction 30' x 60' quadrangle was compiled digitally at 1:100,000 scale. The map area covers the central part of Death Valley and adjacent mountain ranges - the Panamint Range on the west and the Funeral Mountains on the east - as well as areas east of Death Valley including some of the Amargosa Desert, the Spring Mountains and Pahrump Valley. Shaded relief delineates the topography and appears as gray tones in the mountain ranges where the bedrock is undifferentiated and depicted as a single unit.

  13. Microseismicity of Death Valley, California: An Active Detachment Faulting Regime

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bodin, P.; Cowan, D. S.

    2014-12-01

    Death Valley, a half-graben within the Eastern California Shear Zone at the western edge of the Basin and Range structural province, is being simultaneously extended east-west by normal faults seen in outcrop at its eastern edge, and sheared by strike-slip along the North and South Death Valley fault zones. Controversy surrounds the extent, mechanism, and activity of fault slip on the low-angle detachment fault that dips west beneath the valley. While geological evidence points to possibly active detachment faulting, no evidence of seismicity associated with a seismically active detachment fault has been reported. The valley lies between two regional seismic networks, and the precision of locations of the relatively few earthquakes cataloged by the networks is insufficient to address these details. To characterize microseismicity that accompanies active deformation, we deployed 12 portable seismographs for over a year, testing the hypothesis that the detachment fault is microseismically active, albeit at a level too low to have been usefully detected by the regional networks. Of the couple of thousand events recorded on our array, 313 with magnitudes between 0 and 2.5 are located within the central portion of Death Valley. We relocated these earthquakes using a velocity model and individual station delays derived using the VELEST program. Initial results reveal a westward-dipping pattern of hypocenters consistent with the geometry of the westward-dipping detachment fault, however with considerable scatter. The earthquakes were highly clustered; if they occurred on the detachment fault, large parts of it were silent during the experiment. First-motion focal mechanisms indicate normal fault slip on a mixture of low-angle and high-angle planes as well as some strike-slip earthquakes. We will also present an analysis of high-precision relative relocations. The field experiment was brought to an early end due to monsoon flooding in July of 2013.

  14. Space Radar Image of Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    This image shows Death Valley, California, centered at 36.629 degrees north latitude, 117.069 degrees west longitude. The image shows Furnace Creek alluvial fan and Furnace Creek Ranch at the far right, and the sand dunes near Stove Pipe Wells at the center. The dark fork-shaped feature between Furnace Creek fan and the dunes is a smooth flood-plain which encloses Cottonball Basin. This SIR-C/X-SAR supersite is an area of extensive field investigations and has been visited by both Space Radar Lab astronaut crews. Elevations in the valley range from 70 meters (230 feet) below sea level, the lowest in the United States, to more than 3,300 meters (10,800 feet) above sea level. Scientists are using SIR-C/X-SAR data from Death Valley to help answer a number of different questions about Earth's geology. One question concerns how alluvial fans are formed and change through time under the influence of climatic changes and earthquakes. Alluvial fans are gravel deposits that wash down from the mountains over time. They are visible in the image as circular, fan-shaped bright areas extending into the darker valley floor from the mountains. Information about the alluvial fans helps scientists study Earth's ancient climate. Scientists know the fans are built up through climatic and tectonic processes and they will use the SIR-C/X-SAR data to understand the nature and rates of weathering processes on the fans, soil formation and the transport of sand and dust by the wind. SIR-C/X-SAR's sensitivity to centimeter-scale (inch-scale) roughness provides detailed maps of surface texture. Such information can be used to study the occurrence and movement of dust storms and sand dunes. The goal of these studies is to gain a better understanding of the record of past climatic changes and the effects of those changes on a sensitive environment. This may lead to a better ability to predict future response of the land to different potential global climate-change scenarios. Death Valley is also one of the primary calibration sites for SIR-C/X-SAR. The bright dots near the center of the image are corner reflectors that have been set-up to calibrate the radar as the shuttle passes overhead. Thirty triangular-shaped reflectors (they look like aluminum pyramids) have been deployed by the calibration team from JPL over a 40- by 40-kilometer (25- by 25-mile) area in and around Death Valley. The calibration team will also deploy transponders (electronic reflectors) and receivers to measure the radar signals from SIR-C/X-SAR on the ground. SIR-C/X-SAR is part of NASA's Mission to Planet Earth. The radars illuminate Earth with microwaves allowing detailed observations at any time, regardless of weather or sunlight conditions. SIR-C/X-SAR uses three microwave wavelengths: L-band (24 cm), C-band (6 cm) and X-band (3 cm). The multi-frequency data will be used by the international scientific community to better understand the global environment and how it is changing. The SIR-C/X-SAR data, complemented by aircraft and ground studies, will give scientists clearer insights into those environmental changes which are caused by nature and those changes which are induced by human activity. SIR-C was developed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. X-SAR was developed by the Dornier and Alenia Spazio companies for the German space agency, Deutsche Agentur fuer Raumfahrtangelegenheiten (DARA), and the Italian space agency, Agenzia Spaziale Italiana (ASI).

  15. Transforming the "Valley of Death" into a "Valley of Opportunity"

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jedlovec, Gary J.; Merceret, Francis J.; O'Brien, T. P.; Roeder, William P.; Huddleston, Lisa L.; Bauman, William H., III

    2014-01-01

    Transitioning technology from research to operations (23 R2O) is difficult. The problem's importance is exemplified in the literature and in every failed attempt to do so. Although the R2O gap is often called the "valley of death", a recent a Space Weather editorial called it a "Valley of Opportunity". There are significant opportunities for space weather organizations to learn from the terrestrial experience. Dedicated R2O organizations like those of the various NOAA testbeds and collaborative "proving ground" projects take common approaches to improving terrestrial weather forecasting through the early transition of research capabilities into the operational environment. Here we present experience-proven principles for the establishment and operation of similar space weather organizations, public or private. These principles were developed and currently being demonstrated by NASA at the Applied Meteorology Unit (AMU) and the Short-term Prediction Research and Transition (SPoRT) Center. The AMU was established in 1991 jointly by NASA, the U.S. Air Force (USAF) and the National Weather Service (NWS) to provide tools and techniques for improving weather support to the Space Shuttle Program (Madura et al., 2011). The primary customers were the USAF 45th Weather Squadron (45 WS) and the NWS Spaceflight Meteorology Group (SMG who provided the weather observing and forecast support for Shuttle operations). SPoRT was established in 2002 to transition NASA satellite and remote-sensing technology to the NWS. The continuing success of these organizations suggests the common principles guiding them may be valuable for similar endeavors in the space weather arena.

  16. 3D View of Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    This 3-D perspective view looking north over Death Valley, California, was produced by draping ASTER nighttime thermal infrared data over topographic data from the US Geological Survey. The ASTER data were acquired April 7, 2000 with the multi-spectral thermal infrared channels, and cover an area of 60 by 80 km (37 by 50 miles). Bands 13, 12, and 10 are displayed in red, green and blue respectively. The data have been computer enhanced to exaggerate the color variations that highlight differences in types of surface materials. Salt deposits on the floor of Death Valley appear in shades of yellow, green, purple, and pink, indicating presence of carbonate, sulfate, and chloride minerals. The Panamint Mtns. to the west, and the Black Mtns. to the east, are made up of sedimentary limestones, sandstones, shales, and metamorphic rocks. The bright red areas are dominated by the mineral quartz, such as is found in sandstones; green areas are limestones. In the lower center part of the image is Badwater, the lowest point in North America.

    Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18, 1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products. Dr. Anne Kahle at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., is the U.S. Science team leader; Moshe Pniel of JPL is the project manager. ASTER is the only high resolution imaging sensor on Terra. The primary goal of the ASTER mission is to obtain high-resolution image data in 14 channels over the entire land surface, as well as black and white stereo images. With revisit time of between 4 and 16 days, ASTER will provide the capability for repeat coverage of changing areas on Earth's surface.

    The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER will provide scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping, and monitoring dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats, monitoring potentially active volcanoes, identifying crop stress, determining cloud morphology and physical properties, wetlands Evaluation, thermal pollution monitoring, coral reef degradation, surface temperature mapping of soils and geology, and measuring surface heat balance.

  17. Late Quaternary denudation, Death and Panamint Valleys, eastern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jayko, A. S.

    2005-12-01

    Late Quaternary denudation rates are constrained from alluvial fans and tributary watersheds in central Death and Panamint Valleys. Preliminary results suggest that the denudation rate is in part a function of the mean watershed elevation. Rainfall increases semi-logarithmically with higher elevation to about 2500 m where it becomes limited by the regional average maximum moisture content of the air mass. The fan volumes show a power-law relation to the watershed areas. The fan volumes ranged from about 250,000 to 4000 km 3 and the watershed areas range from about 60,000 to 2000 km 2. The upper limit of the denudation rates estimated from small Death Valley fans restricted to the east side of the basin along the Black Mountain frontal scarp range between about 0.03 to 0.18 mm/yr. The maximum is made by assuming most of the clastic accumulation in these fans followed the last highstand of Lake Manly around 24,000 yr which is the least conservative condition. The upper limit of the denudation rates from the Panamint fans range from 0.04 to 0.20 mm/yr assuming the accumulation mainly postdates OIS-4 ˜60,000 yr or OIS-2 ˜20,000 yr based on the presence or absence of inset shorelines from the last glacial-pluvial maximum. The greater denudation rate associated with the higher mean watershed elevations can mainly be attributed to the greater rainfall at higher elevation. Denudation rates are about a third or less of the Neogene dip-slip rates reported from nearby active faults consistent with relief increasing during dryer periods.

  18. Relative size of fluvial and glaciated valleys in central Idaho

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amerson, Byron E.; Montgomery, David R.; Meyer, Grant

    2008-01-01

    Quantitative comparisons of the morphometry of glaciated and fluvial valleys in central Idaho were used to investigate the differences in valley relief and width in otherwise similar geologic and geomorphic settings. The local relief, width, and cross-sectional area of valleys were measured using GIS software to extract information from USGS digital elevation models. Hillslope gradients were also measured using GIS software. Power-law relationships for local valley relief, width, and cross-sectional area as a function of drainage area were developed. Local valley relief in glaciated valleys relates to drainage area with a power-law exponent similar to fluvial valleys, but glaciated valleys are deeper for a given drainage area. Local valley width in glaciated valleys is greater than in fluvial valleys, but the exponent of the power-law relationship to drainage area is similar in both valley types. Local valley cross-sectional area in glaciated valleys increases with drainage area with a power-law exponent similar to fluvial valleys, however, glacial valleys have roughly 80% greater cross-sectional area. Steep valley walls in glaciated basins increase the potential for bedrock landsliding relative to fluvial basins. Both the Olympic Mountains of Washington and valleys in central Idaho show relationships in which glaciated valleys are up to 30% deeper than fluvial valleys despite differences in lithology, tectonic setting, and climate.

  19. Kinematics at Death Valley-Garlock fault zone junction

    SciTech Connect

    Abrams, R.B.; Verosub, K.; Finnerty, A.

    1987-08-01

    The Garlock and Death Valley fault zones in southeast California are two active strike-slip faults that come together on the east side of the Avawatz Mountains. The kinematics of this intersection, and the possible continuation of either fault zone, is being investigated using a combination of detailed field mapping, and processing and interpretation of remotely sensed image data from satellite and aircraft platforms. Regional and local relationships are derivable from the thematic Mapper data (30 m resolution), including discrimination and relative age dating of alluvial fans, bedrock mapping, and fault mapping. Aircraft data provide higher spatial resolution data over more limited areas. Hypotheses that are being considered are (1) the Garlock fault extends east of the intersection; (2) the Garlock fault terminates at the intersection and the Death Valley fault continues southeastward; and (3) the Garlock fault has been offset right laterally by the Death Valley fault that continues to the southeast. Preliminary work indicates that the first hypothesis is invalid. Kinematic considerations, image analysis, and field work results favor the third hypothesis. The projected continuation of the Death Valley zone defines the boundary between the Mojave crustal block and the Basin and Range block.

  20. Death Valley research revises age of last deep lake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machette, Michael N.; Thompson, Ren A.; Slate, Janet L.; Heise, Bruce

    The last deep lake in Death Valley probably existed during marine isotope stage VI, more than 100,000 years earlier than previously thought, according to a paper presented this past spring at a conference on geologic research in Death Valley. The long accepted paradigm of a deep lake, known as Lake Manley in the very late Pleistocene appears to have fallen in light of recent U-series dating of high shorelines.This and other new research were the topics of an interdisciplinary meeting on the “Status of Geologic Research and Mapping in Death Valley National Park.” As its title indicates, the conference was organized to compile up-to-date information on the status of geologic research and mapping in Death Valley National Park and surrounding areas. It also was intended to establish a network of active researchers to create synergy for cooperative, interdisciplinary research endeavors and to present recent and current research results in an informal setting, thus encouraging dialogue.

  1. Recent landscape change in California's Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soulard, C. E.; Wilson, T. S.

    2012-12-01

    Long term monitoring of land use and land cover in California's intensively farmed Central Valley reveals several key physical and socioeconomic factors driving landscape change. As part of the USGS Land Cover Trends Project, we analyzed modern land-use/land-cover change for the California Central Valley ecoregion between 2000 and 2010, monitoring annual change between 2005 and 2010, while creating two new change intervals (2000-2005 and 2005-2010) to update the existing 27-year, interval-based analysis. Between 2000 and 2010, agricultural lands fluctuated due to changes in water allocations and emerging drought conditions, or were lost permanently to development (240 square km). Land-use pressure from agriculture and development also led to a decline in grasslands and shrublands across the region (280 square km). Overall, 400 square km of new developed lands were added in the first decade of the 21st century. From 2007 to 2010, development only expanded by 50 square km, coinciding with defaults in the banking system, the onset of historic foreclosure crisis in California and the global economic downturn. Our annual LULC change estimates capture landscape-level change in response to regional policy changes, climate, and fluctuations (e.g., growth or decline) in the national and global economy. The resulting change data provide insights into the drivers of landscape change in the California Central Valley and the combination of two consistent mapping efforts represents the first continuous, 37-year endeavor of its kind.

  2. Upper Neogene stratigraphy and tectonics of Death Valley - A review

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knott, J.R.; Sarna-Wojcicki, A. M.; Machette, M.N.; Klinger, R.E.

    2005-01-01

    New tephrochronologic, soil-stratigraphic and radiometric-dating studies over the last 10 years have generated a robust numerical stratigraphy for Upper Neogene sedimentary deposits throughout Death Valley. Critical to this improved stratigraphy are correlated or radiometrically-dated tephra beds and tuffs that range in age from > 3.58 Ma to < 1.1 ka. These tephra beds and tuffs establish relations among the Upper Pliocene to Middle Pleistocene sedimentary deposits at Furnace Creek basin, Nova basin, Ubehebe-Lake Rogers basin, Copper Canyon, Artists Drive, Kit Fox Hills, and Confidence Hills. New geologic formations have been described in the Confidence Hills and at Mormon Point. This new geochronology also establishes maximum and minimum ages for Quaternary alluvial fans and Lake Manly deposits. Facies associated with the tephra beds show that ???3.3 Ma the Furnace Creek basin was a northwest-southeast-trending lake flanked by alluvial fans. This paleolake extended from the Furnace Creek to Ubehebe. Based on the new stratigraphy, the Death Valley fault system can be divided into four main fault zones: the dextral, Quaternary-age Northern Death Valley fault zone; the dextral, pre-Quaternary Furnace Creek fault zone; the oblique-normal Black Mountains fault zone; and the dextral Southern Death Valley fault zone. Post -3.3 Ma geometric, structural, and kinematic changes in the Black Mountains and Towne Pass fault zones led to the break up of Furnace Creek basin and uplift of the Copper Canyon and Nova basins. Internal kinematics of northern Death Valley are interpreted as either rotation of blocks or normal slip along the northeast-southwest-trending Towne Pass and Tin Mountain fault zones within the Eastern California shear zone. ?? 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Hydrology of modern and late Holocene lakes, Death Valley, California

    SciTech Connect

    Grasso, D.N.

    1996-07-01

    Above-normal precipitation and surface-water runoff, which have been generally related to the cyclic recurrence of the El Nino-Southern Oscillation, have produced modern ephemeral lakes in the closed-basin Death Valley watershed. This study evaluates the regional hydroclimatic relations between precipitation, runoff, and lake transgressions in the Death Valley watershed. Recorded precipitation, runoff, and spring discharge data for the region are used in conjunction with a closed-basin, lake-water-budget equation to assess the relative contributions of water from these sources to modern lakes in Death Valley and to identify the requisite hydroclimatic changes for a late Holocene perennial lake in the valley. As part of the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Program, an evaluation of the Quaternary regional paleoflood hydrology of the potential nuclear-waste repository site at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, was planned. The objectives of the evaluation were (1) to identify the locations and investigate the hydraulic characteristics of paleofloods and compare these with the locations and characteristics of modern floods, and (2) to evaluate the character and severity of past floods and debris flows to ascertain the potential future hazards to the potential repository during the pre-closure period (US Department of Energy, 1988). This study addresses the first of these objectives, and the second in part, by assessing and comparing the sizes, locations, and recurrence rates of modern, recorded (1962--83) floods and late Holocene paleofloods for the 8,533-mi{sup 2}, closed-basin, Death Valley watershed with its contributing drainage basins in the Yucca Mountain site area.

  4. Microscopic identification of prokaryotes in modern and ancient halite, Saline Valley and Death Valley, California.

    PubMed

    Schubert, Brian A; Lowenstein, Tim K; Timofeeff, Michael N

    2009-06-01

    Primary fluid inclusions in halite crystallized in Saline Valley, California, in 1980, 2004-2005, and 2007, contain rod- and coccoid-shaped microparticles the same size and morphology as archaea and bacteria living in modern brines. Primary fluid inclusions from a well-dated (0-100,000 years), 90 m long salt core from Badwater Basin, Death Valley, California, also contain microparticles, here interpreted as halophilic and halotolerant prokaryotes. Prokaryotes are distinguished from crystals on the basis of morphology, optical properties (birefringence), and uniformity of size. Electron micrographs of microparticles from filtered modern brine (Saline Valley), dissolved modern halite crystals (Saline Valley), and dissolved ancient halite crystals (Death Valley) support in situ microscopic observations that prokaryotes are present in fluid inclusions in ancient halite. In the Death Valley salt core, prokaryotes in fluid inclusions occur almost exclusively in halite precipitated in perennial saline lakes 10,000 to 35,000 years ago. This suggests that trapping and preservation of prokaryotes in fluid inclusions is influenced by the surface environment in which the halite originally precipitated. In all cases, prokaryotes in fluid inclusions in halite from the Death Valley salt core are miniaturized (<1 microm diameter cocci, <2.5 microm long, very rare rod shapes), which supports interpretations that the prokaryotes are indigenous to the halite and starvation survival may be the normal response of some prokaryotes to entrapment in fluid inclusions for millennia. These results reinforce the view that fluid inclusions in halite and possibly other evaporites are important repositories of microbial life and should be carefully examined in the search for ancient microorganisms on Earth, Mars, and elsewhere in the Solar System. PMID:19566426

  5. Microscopic Identification of Prokaryotes in Modern and Ancient Halite, Saline Valley and Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schubert, Brian A.; Lowenstein, Tim K.; Timofeeff, Michael N.

    2009-06-01

    Primary fluid inclusions in halite crystallized in Saline Valley, California, in 1980, 2004-2005, and 2007, contain rod- and coccoid-shaped microparticles the same size and morphology as archaea and bacteria living in modern brines. Primary fluid inclusions from a well-dated (0-100,000 years), 90 m long salt core from Badwater Basin, Death Valley, California, also contain microparticles, here interpreted as halophilic and halotolerant prokaryotes. Prokaryotes are distinguished from crystals on the basis of morphology, optical properties (birefringence), and uniformity of size. Electron micrographs of microparticles from filtered modern brine (Saline Valley), dissolved modern halite crystals (Saline Valley), and dissolved ancient halite crystals (Death Valley) support in situ microscopic observations that prokaryotes are present in fluid inclusions in ancient halite. In the Death Valley salt core, prokaryotes in fluid inclusions occur almost exclusively in halite precipitated in perennial saline lakes 10,000 to 35,000 years ago. This suggests that trapping and preservation of prokaryotes in fluid inclusions is influenced by the surface environment in which the halite originally precipitated. In all cases, prokaryotes in fluid inclusions in halite from the Death Valley salt core are miniaturized (<1 μm diameter cocci, <2.5 μm long, very rare rod shapes), which supports interpretations that the prokaryotes are indigenous to the halite and starvation survival may be the normal response of some prokaryotes to entrapment in fluid inclusions for millennia. These results reinforce the view that fluid inclusions in halite and possibly other evaporites are important repositories of microbial life and should be carefully examined in the search for ancient microorganisms on Earth, Mars, and elsewhere in the Solar System.

  6. Sedimentary facies of alluvial fan deposits, Death Valley, California

    SciTech Connect

    Middleton, G.V. )

    1992-01-01

    Fans in Death Valley include both diamicts and bedded gravels. Seven facies may be recognized. The diamicts include: (1) matrix-rich, coarse wackestones; (2) thin, matrix-rich, fine wackestones, that may show grading; (3) matrix-poor, coarse packstones, transitional to wackestones. The bedded facies include: (4) weakly bedded, poorly sorted packstones or grainstones, that show patchy imbrication, and cut-and-fill structures; (5) packed, imbricated cobble lenses, generally interbedded in facies 4; (6) distinctly bedded gravels, that are better bedded, finer and better sorted, and show better imbrication than facies 4, but still do not show clear separation of sand and gravel beds; (7) backfill cross-bedded gravels. Sand beds are not seen in fan deposits. Sand is present in eolian deposits, as plane-laminated, back-eddy deposits in Death Valley Wash, and as laminated or rippled sand in the Amargosa River. The most remarkable features of the fan deposits are the very weak segregation of sand and gravel, and the complete absence of any lower flow-regime structures produced by ripples or dunes. During floods, the slope of fan and even large wash surfaces is steep enough to produce upper flow regimes. There are also very few trends in facies abundance down fans: most fans in Death Valley itself are not strongly dominated by debris flow deposits (diamicts). The facies characteristics of a given fan vary little from proximal to distal regions, but may differ strongly from the facies seen in adjacent fans. Ancient deposits that show clear segregation of gravel from cross-bedded sand beds, or strong proximal to distal facies transitions, must have been deposited in environments quite different from Death Valley.

  7. Imaging Radar Applications in the Death Valley Region

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Farr, Tom G.

    1996-01-01

    Death Valley has had a long history as a testbed for remote sensing techniques (Gillespie, this conference). Along with visible-near infrared and thermal IR sensors, imaging radars have flown and orbited over the valley since the 1970's, yielding new insights into the geologic applications of that technology. More recently, radar interferometry has been used to derive digital topographic maps of the area, supplementing the USGS 7.5' digital quadrangles currently available for nearly the entire area. As for their shorter-wavelength brethren, imaging radars were tested early in their civilian history in Death Valley because it has a variety of surface types in a small area without the confounding effects of vegetation. In one of the classic references of these early radar studies, in a semi-quantitative way the response of an imaging radar to surface roughness near the radar wavelength, which typically ranges from about 1 cm to 1 m was explained. This laid the groundwork for applications of airborne and spaceborne radars to geologic problems in and regions. Radar's main advantages over other sensors stems from its active nature- supplying its own illumination makes it independent of solar illumination and it can also control the imaging geometry more accurately. Finally, its long wavelength allows it to peer through clouds, eliminating some of the problems of optical sensors, especially in perennially cloudy and polar areas.

  8. Geology of the Greenwater Range, and the dawn of Death Valley, California—Field guide for the Death Valley Natural History Conference, 2013

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Calzia, J.P.; Rämö, O.T.; Jachens, Robert; Smith, Eugene; Knott, Jeffrey

    2016-01-01

    Much has been written about the age and formation of Death Valley, but that is one—if not the last—chapter in the fascinating geologic history of this area. Igneous and sedimentary rocks in the Greenwater Range, one mountain range east of Death Valley, tell an earlier story that overlaps with the formation of Death Valley proper. This early story has been told by scientists who have studied these rocks for many years and continue to do so. This field guide was prepared for the first Death Valley Natural History Conference and provides an overview of the geology of the Greenwater Range and the early history (10–0 Ma) of Death Valley.

  9. Inventory of amphibians and reptiles at Death Valley National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Persons, Trevor B.; Nowak, Erika M.

    2006-01-01

    As part of the National Park Service Inventory and Monitoring Program in the Mojave Network, we conducted an inventory of amphibians and reptiles at Death Valley National Park in 2002-04. Objectives for this inventory were to: 1) Inventory and document the occurrence of reptile and amphibian species occurring at DEVA, primarily within priority sampling areas, with the goal of documenting at least 90% of the species present; 2) document (through collection or museum specimen and literature review) one voucher specimen for each species identified; 3) provide a GIS-referenced list of sensitive species that are federally or state listed, rare, or worthy of special consideration that occur within priority sampling locations; 4) describe park-wide distribution of federally- or state-listed, rare, or special concern species; 5) enter all species data into the National Park Service NPSpecies database; and 6) provide all deliverables as outlined in the Mojave Network Biological Inventory Study Plan. Methods included daytime and nighttime visual encounter surveys, road driving, and pitfall trapping. Survey effort was concentrated in predetermined priority sampling areas, as well as in areas with a high potential for detecting undocumented species. We recorded 37 species during our surveys, including two species new to the park. During literature review and museum specimen database searches, we recorded three additional species from DEVA, elevating the documented species list to 40 (four amphibians and 36 reptiles). Based on our surveys, as well as literature and museum specimen review, we estimate an overall inventory completeness of 92% for Death Valley and an inventory completeness of 73% for amphibians and 95% for reptiles. Key Words: Amphibians, reptiles, Death Valley National Park, Inyo County, San Bernardino County, Esmeralda County, Nye County, California, Nevada, Mojave Desert, Great Basin Desert, inventory, NPSpecies.

  10. Imaging Radar in the Mojave Desert-Death Valley Region

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Farr, Tom G.

    2001-01-01

    The Mojave Desert-Death Valley region has had a long history as a test bed for remote sensing techniques. Along with visible-near infrared and thermal IR sensors, imaging radars have flown and orbited over the area since the 1970's, yielding new insights into the geologic applications of these technologies. More recently, radar interferometry has been used to derive digital topographic maps of the area, supplementing the USGS 7.5' digital quadrangles currently available for nearly the entire area. As for their shorter-wavelength brethren, imaging radars were tested early in their civilian history in the Mojave Desert-Death Valley region because it contains a variety of surface types in a small area without the confounding effects of vegetation. The earliest imaging radars to be flown over the region included military tests of short-wavelength (3 cm) X-band sensors. Later, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory began its development of imaging radars with an airborne sensor, followed by the Seasat orbital radar in 1978. These systems were L-band (25 cm). Following Seasat, JPL embarked upon a series of Space Shuttle Imaging Radars: SIRA (1981), SIR-B (1984), and SIR-C (1994). The most recent in the series was the most capable radar sensor flown in space and acquired large numbers of data swaths in a variety of test areas around the world. The Mojave Desert-Death Valley region was one of those test areas, and was covered very well with 3 wavelengths, multiple polarizations, and at multiple angles. At the same time, the JPL aircraft radar program continued improving and collecting data over the Mojave Desert Death Valley region. Now called AIRSAR, the system includes 3 bands (P-band, 67 cm; L-band, 25 cm; C-band, 5 cm). Each band can collect all possible polarizations in a mode called polarimetry. In addition, AIRSAR can be operated in the TOPSAR mode wherein 2 antennas collect data interferometrically, yielding a digital elevation model (DEM). Both L-band and C-band can be operated in this way, with horizontal resolution of about 5 m and vertical errors less than 2 m. The findings and developments of these earlier investigations are discussed.

  11. Testing the Interbasin Flow Hypothesis at Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nelson, Stephen T.; Anderson, Katherine; Mayo, Alan L.

    2004-09-01

    Interbasin flow is a process by which groundwater moves from one topographic basin to another through an intervening structural or topographic barrier. For decades, interbasin flow has been the prevailing conceptual paradigm for groundwater movement in the arid southwestern United States wherever carbonate rocks are thought to be in continuous contact. This conceptual model of groundwater flow is especially relevant in the Death Valley region where water resources are scarce and where the U.S. government has conducted underground nuclear tests as well as the planned storage facility for spent nuclear fuel at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Recent studies of large flux springs (~10,000 L/min) in the Furnace Creek area of Death Valley, California (Figure 1), however, indicate that the concept of interbasin flow may be fundamentally flawed, or at least not as universally applicable as previously thought. Rather, it appears that aquifers supplying Furnace Creek springs were replenished locally during episodes of wet climate more than 9500 yr ago, a contention supported by extensive regional fossil spring deposits.

  12. Terrestrial Cosmogenic-Nuclide Dating of Alluvial Fans in Death Valley, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Machette, Michael N.; Slate, Janet L.; Phillips, Fred M.

    2008-01-01

    We have used terrestrial cosmogenic nuclides (TCN) to establish the age of some of the most extensive Quaternary alluvial fans in Death Valley, California. These intermediate-age alluvial fans are most extensive on the western side of the valley, where tectonic deformation is considerably less pronounced than on the eastern side of the valley. These fans are characterized by a relatively smooth, densely packed desert pavement formed by well-varnished (blackened) clasts. These surfaces have been mapped as the Q2 gravel by previous workers and as unit Qai (intermediate age) by us. However, the intermediate-age gravels probably contain multiple subunits, as evidenced by slight differences in morphologic expression, soil formation, and inset geomorphic relations. The TCN technique used herein sums the cosmogenic 36Cl in approximately 2.5-meter-deep profiles through soil and host alluvium, thus avoiding some of the problems associated with the more typical surface-exposure dating of boulders or smaller clasts. Our TCN 36Cl dating of 12 depth profiles indicates that these intermediate-age (Qai) alluvial fans range from about 100 to 40 kilo-annum (ka), with a mean age of about 70 ka. An alternative interpretation is that alluvial unit Qai was deposited in two discrete episodes from 90 to 80 ka and from 60 to 50 ka, before and after MIS (marine oxygen-isotope stage) 4 (respectively). Without an intermediate-age unit, such as MIS 4 lake deposits, we can neither disprove nor prove that Qai was deposited in two discrete intervals or over a longer range of time. Thus, in Death Valley, alluvial unit Qai largely brackets MIS 4, which is not associated with a deep phase of Lake Manly. These Qai fans extend to elevations of about -46 meters (150 feet below sea level) and have not been transgressed by Lake Manly, suggesting that MIS 4 or MIS 2 lakes were rather shallow in Death Valley, perhaps because they lacked inflow from surface runoff of the Sierra Nevada drainages through Panamint Valley and over Wingate Wash. A remnant of ancient lake shoreline deposits that once extended across the Hanaupah Canyon fan constrains the timing and extent of the last deep cycle of Pleistocene Lake Manly. The lacustrine delta complex yields a 36Cl depth-profile date of 130 ka, which is consistent with deposition during a highstand of Lake Manly at the end of MIS 6. These deposits are presently at an altitude of about 30 meters above sea level (asl), which relates to a lake with a maximum depth of about 115 meters. Remnants of shoreline deposits at higher elevations on the southern margin of the Hanaupah Canyon fan complex are cut across older alluvium (unit Qao) and may be related to an MIS 6 highstand of at least 67 meters asl or, more likely, an older (MIS 8 or earlier) highstand that is poorly preserved and still undated in the valley. As part of our work on the west-side fans, we also dated an older phase of alluvial-fan deposits from the Trail Canyon fan complex, which is north of Hanaupah Canyon. A 36Cl depth-profile age of 170 ka suggests alluvial deposition of unit Qaio (older phase of Qao) took place prior to the MIS 6 highstand of Lake Manly. Knowing the absolute ages (or range in ages) of the intermediate-age (Qai) surfaces in Death Valley allows us to estimate the following rates of geologic processes: (1) a lateral slip rate of 5 millimeters per year for the northern Death Valley fault zone; (2) uplift of 50 meters in roughly the past 80,000 years for parts of the Mustard Canyon hills in east-central Death Valley; and (3) an estimated 10-40 m of dip-slip thrust movement on the Echo Canyon fault in Furnace Creek Canyon.

  13. Paleoseismology of the Southern Section of the Black Mountains and Southern Death Valley Fault Zones, Death Valley, United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sohn, Marsha S.; Knott, Jeffrey R.; Mahan, Shannon

    2014-01-01

    The Death Valley Fault System (DVFS) is part of the southern Walker Lane–eastern California shear zone. The normal Black Mountains Fault Zone (BMFZ) and the right-lateral Southern Death Valley Fault Zone (SDVFZ) are two components of the DVFS. Estimates of late Pleistocene-Holocene slip rates and recurrence intervals for these two fault zones are uncertain owing to poor relative age control. The BMFZ southernmost section (Section 1W) steps basinward and preserves multiple scarps in the Quaternary alluvial fans. We present optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dates ranging from 27 to 4 ka of fluvial and eolian sand lenses interbedded with alluvial-fan deposits offset by the BMFZ. By cross-cutting relations, we infer that there were three separate ground-rupturing earthquakes on BMFZ Section 1W with vertical displacement between 5.5 m and 2.75 m. The slip-rate estimate is ∼0.2 to 1.8 mm/yr, with an earthquake recurrence interval of 4,500 to 2,000 years. Slip-per-event measurements indicate Mw 7.0 to 7.2 earthquakes. The 27–4-ka OSL-dated alluvial fans also overlie the putative Cinder Hill tephra layer. Cinder Hill is offset ∼213 m by SDVFZ, which yields a tentative slip rate of 1 to 8 mm/yr for the SDVFZ.

  14. Color Image of Death Valley, California from SIR-C

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    This radar image shows the area of Death Valley, California and the different surface types in the area. Radar is sensitive to surface roughness with rough areas showing up brighter than smooth areas, which appear dark. This is seen in the contrast between the bright mountains that surround the dark, smooth basins and valleys of Death Valley. The image shows Furnace Creek alluvial fan (green crescent feature) at the far right, and the sand dunes near Stove Pipe Wells at the center. Alluvial fans are gravel deposits that wash down from the mountains over time. Several other alluvial fans (semicircular features) can be seen along the mountain fronts in this image. The dark wrench-shaped feature between Furnace Creek fan and the dunes is a smooth flood-plain which encloses Cottonball Basin. Elevations in the valley range from 70 meters (230 feet) below sea level, the lowest in the United States, to more than 3,300 meters (10,800 feet) above sea level. Scientists are using these radar data to help answer a number of different questions about Earth's geology including how alluvial fans form and change through time in response to climatic changes and earthquakes. The image is centered at 36.629 degrees north latitude, 117.069 degrees west longitude. Colors in the image represent different radar channels as follows: red =L-band horizontally polarized transmitted, horizontally polarized received (LHH); green =L-band horizontally transmitted, vertically received (LHV) and blue = CHV.

    SIR-C/X-SAR is part of NASA's Mission to Planet Earth. The radars illuminate Earth with microwaves allowing detailed observations at any time, regardless of weather or sunlight conditions. SIR-C/X-SAR uses three microwave wavelengths: L-band (24 cm), C-band (6 cm) and X-band (3 cm). The multi-frequency data will be used by the international scientific community to better understand the global environment and how it is changing. The SIR-C/X-SAR data, complemented by aircraft and ground studies, will give scientists clearer insights into those environmental changes which are caused by nature and those changes which are induced by human activity. SIR-C was developed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. X-SAR was developed by the Dornier and Alenia Spazio companies for the German space agency, Deutsche Agentur fuer Raumfahrtangelegenheiten (DARA), and the Italian space agency, Agenzia Spaziale Italiana (ASI).

  15. California's Central Valley Groundwater Study: A Powerful New Tool to Assess Water Resources in California's Central Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Faunt, Claudia C.; Hanson, Randall T.; Belitz, Kenneth; Rogers, Laurel

    2009-01-01

    Competition for water resources is growing throughout California, particularly in the Central Valley. Since 1980, the Central Valley's population has nearly doubled to 3.8 million people. It is expected to increase to 6 million by 2020. Statewide population growth, anticipated reductions in Colorado River water deliveries, drought, and the ecological crisis in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta have created an intense demand for water. Tools and information can be used to help manage the Central Valley aquifer system, an important State and national resource.

  16. ANALYSIS OF LOTIC MACROINVERTEBRATE ASSEMBLAGES IN CALIFORNIA'S CENTRAL VALLEY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Using multivariate and cluster analyses, we examined the relaitonships between chemical and physical characteristics and macroinvertebrate assemblages at sites sampled by R-EMAP in California's Central Valley. By contrasting results where community structure was summarized as met...

  17. Space Radar Image of Death Valley in 3-D

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    This picture is a three-dimensional perspective view of Death Valley, California. This view was constructed by overlaying a SIR-C radar image on a U.S. Geological Survey digital elevation map. The SIR-C image is centered at 36.629 degrees north latitude and 117.069 degrees west longitude. We are looking at Stove Pipe Wells, which is the bright rectangle located in the center of the picture frame. Our vantage point is located atop a large alluvial fan centered at the mouth of Cottonwood Canyon. In the foreground on the left, we can see the sand dunes near Stove Pipe Wells. In the background on the left, the Valley floor gradually falls in elevation toward Badwater, the lowest spot in the United States. In the background on the right we can see Tucki Mountain. This SIR-C/X-SAR supersite is an area of extensive field investigations and has been visited by both Space Radar Lab astronaut crews. Elevations in the Valley range from 70 meters (230 feet) below sea level, the lowest in the United States, to more than 3,300 meters (10,800 feet) above sea level. Scientists are using SIR-C/X-SAR data from Death Valley to help the answer a number of different questions about Earth's geology. One question concerns how alluvial fans are formed and change through time under the influence of climatic changes and earthquakes. Alluvial fans are gravel deposits that wash down from the mountains over time. They are visible in the image as circular, fan-shaped bright areas extending into the darker valley floor from the mountains. Information about the alluvial fans helps scientists study Earth's ancient climate. Scientists know the fans are built up through climatic and tectonic processes and they will use the SIR-C/X-SAR data to understand the nature and rates of weathering processes on the fans, soil formation and the transport of sand and dust by the wind. SIR-C/X-SAR's sensitivity to centimeter-scale (inch-scale) roughness provides detailed maps of surface texture. Such information can be used to study the occurrence and movement of dust storms and sand dunes. The goal of these studies is to gain a better understanding of the record of past climatic changes and the effects of those changes on a sensitive environment. This may lead to a better ability to predict future response of the land to different potential global climate-change scenarios. Vertical exaggeration is 1.87 times; exaggeration of relief is a common tool scientists use to detect relationships between structure (for example, faults and fractures) and topography. Death Valley is also one of the primary calibration sites for SIR-C/X-SAR. In the lower right quadrant of the picture frame two bright dots can be seen which form a line extending to Stove Pipe Wells. These dots are corner reflectors that have been set up to calibrate the radar as the shuttle passes overhead. Thirty triangular-shaped reflectors (they look like aluminum pyramids) have been deployed by the calibration team from JPL over a 40- by 40-kilometer (25- by 25-mile) area in and around Death Valley. The signatures of these reflectors were analyzed by JPL scientists to calibrate the image used in this picture. The calibration team here also deployed transponders (electronic reflectors) and receivers to measure the radar signals from SIR-C/X-SAR on the ground. SIR-C/X-SAR radars illuminate Earth with microwaves allowing detailed observations at any time, regardless of weather or sunlight conditions. SIR-C/X-SAR uses three microwave wavelengths: L-band (24 cm), C-band (6 cm) and X-band (3 cm). The multi-frequency data will be used by the international scientific community to better understand the global environment and how it is changing. The SIR-C/X-SAR data, in conjunction with aircraft and ground studies, will give scientists clearer insights into those environmental changes which are caused by nature and those changes which are induced by human activity. SIR-C was developed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. X-SAR was developed by the Dornier and Alenia Spazio companies for the German space agency, Deutsche Agentur fur Raumfahrtangelegenheiten (DARA), and the Italian space agency, Agenzia Spaziale Italiana (ASI).

  18. Comment on “Testing the Interbasin Flow Hypothesis at Death Valley, California”

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winograd, Isaac J.; Fridrich, Christopher J.; Sweetkind, Donald; Belcher, Wayne R.; Thomas, James M.

    In the 1960s, a major hydrogeologic investigation was conducted at the Nevada Test Site (NTS, Figure 1) that included drilling, hydraulic testing, and hydrogeochemical studies in conjunction with geologic mapping and geophysical surveys. This work demonstrated that a large part of south central Nevada is underlain by thick (several kilometers) highly fractured Paleozoic carbonate rocks that typically act as an aquifer. The aquifer flanks and underlies most of the intermontane basins from east central Nevada southward, through the NTS, to the southern Funeral Mountains east of Death Valley (Figure 1). Water levels measured in many test holes demonstrate that the potentiometric surface in the carbonate aquifer generally is uninterrupted by the ridges that separate the many topographically closed basins of the region.

  19. Geostatistical estimates of future recharge for the Death Valley region

    SciTech Connect

    Hevesi, J.A.; Flint, A.L.

    1998-12-01

    Spatially distributed estimates of regional ground water recharge rates under both current and potential future climates are needed to evaluate a potential geologic repository for high-level nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, which is located within the Death Valley ground-water region (DVGWR). Determining the spatial distribution of recharge is important for regional saturated-zone ground-water flow models. In the southern Nevada region, the Maxey-Eakin method has been used for estimating recharge based on average annual precipitation. Although this method does not directly account for a variety of location-specific factors which control recharge (such as bedrock permeability, soil cover, and net radiation), precipitation is the primary factor that controls in the region. Estimates of recharge obtained by using the Maxey-Eakin method are comparable to estimates of recharge obtained by using chloride balance studies. The authors consider the Maxey-Eakin approach as a relatively simple method of obtaining preliminary estimates of recharge on a regional scale.

  20. Quaternary tilt of Death Valley determined from landform modelling of alluvial fans

    SciTech Connect

    West, R.B.; Wilson, D.S. . Dept. of Geology)

    1993-04-01

    Alluvial fans along the east side of central Death Valley are being actively back-tilted along the Death Valley fault zone. Initial modelling of the Copper Canyon and Furnace Creek fans led to recognition of distinct segments. Field reconnaissance and aerial photo mapping were conducted to check model results and improve segment discrimination. Surface roughness, relative position, vegetation distribution, and drainage patterns provided independent evidence for segment discrimination. Subsequent modelling of individual segments produced a range of tilt values from 0.275[degree] to 0.559[degree] down to the northeast. Continued analysis of these fan segments is concentrated on: (1) assigning confidence and error values to the tilt values; and (2) dating individual segments. Further work will compare the tilt rates of east-side fans with those from the west. The mean squared error (MSE) is currently being used as a first order assessment of the quality of the model's fit to data digitized from 1:24,000 scale USGS topographic maps. MSE values of 1 m or less can be expected for relatively young or actively aggrading segments. Previous fan models have found the expected range of misfits to be between 2 m and 5 m. This seven parameter least squares model has produced fits with less than 2 m total range in misfits. Previous models have not accounted for tilt or have relied on simplifying assumptions to fix apex position.

  1. Morphological and Geomicrobiological Characteristics of an Endolithic Microbial Community from the Badwater Basin, Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Douglas, S.

    2001-01-01

    ESEM-EDS studies of an endolithic evaporite community from Death Valley revealed its ability to sequester water and affect the partitioning of trace metals in this environment. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  2. Terpenes emitted from agricultural species found in California's Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arey, Janet; Winer, Arthur M.; Atkinson, Roger; Aschmann, Sara M.; Long, William D.; Morrison, C. Lynn; Olszyk, David M.

    1991-05-01

    More than a dozen monoterpenes have been identified as emissions from agricultural and natural plant species occupying large acreages in the Central Valley of California, including as dominant emissions camphene, 2-carene, Δ3-carene, limonene, myrcene, trans-ocimene, β-phellandrene, α-pinene, β-pinene, sabinene, γ-terpinene, and terpinolene. Isoprene was not a significant emission from any of the crop species examined but was emitted by a Valley Oak. In addition to the monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes were emitted from approximately one third of the species investigated, in some cases at higher levels than the monoterpene emissions from the same plant. The possible contributions of these biogenic emissions to the ozone exceedances in the Central Valley should be considered in planning future emission control strategies.

  3. Increased body mass of ducks wintering in California's Central Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fleskes, Joseph; Yee, Julie L.; Yarris, Gregory S.; Loughman, Daniel L.

    2016-01-01

    Waterfowl managers lack the information needed to fully evaluate the biological effects of their habitat conservation programs. We studied body condition of dabbling ducks shot by hunters at public hunting areas throughout the Central Valley of California during 2006–2008 compared with condition of ducks from 1979 to 1993. These time periods coincide with habitat increases due to Central Valley Joint Venture conservation programs and changing agricultural practices; we modeled to ascertain whether body condition differed among waterfowl during these periods. Three dataset comparisons indicate that dabbling duck body mass was greater in 2006–2008 than earlier years and the increase was greater in the Sacramento Valley and Suisun Marsh than in the San Joaquin Valley, differed among species (mallard [Anas platyrhynchos], northern pintail [Anas acuta], America wigeon [Anas americana], green-winged teal [Anas crecca], and northern shoveler [Anas clypeata]), and was greater in ducks harvested late in the season. Change in body mass also varied by age–sex cohort and month for all 5 species and by September–January rainfall for all except green-winged teal. The random effect of year nested in period, and sometimes interacting with other factors, improved models in many cases. Results indicate that improved habitat conditions in the Central Valley have resulted in increased winter body mass of dabbling ducks, especially those that feed primarily on seeds, and this increase was greater in regions where area of post-harvest flooding of rice and other crops, and wetland area, has increased. Conservation programs that continue to promote post-harvest flooding and other agricultural practices that benefit wintering waterfowl and continue to restore and conserve wetlands would likely help maintain body condition of wintering dabbling ducks in the Central Valley of California.

  4. Bridging the Technology Readiness "Valley of Death" Utilizing Nanosats

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bauer, Robert A.; Millar, Pamela S.; Norton, Charles D.

    2015-01-01

    Incorporating new technology is a hallmark of space missions. Missions demand ever-improving tools and techniques to allow them to meet the mission science requirements. In Earth Science, these technologies are normally expressed in new instrument capabilities that can enable new measurement concepts, extended capabilities of existing measurement techniques, or totally new detection capabilities, and also, information systems technologies that can enhance data analysis or enable new data analyses to advance modeling and prediction capabilities. Incorporating new technologies has never been easy. There is a large development step beyond demonstration in a laboratory or on an airborne platform to the eventual space environment that is sometimes referred to as the "technology valley of death." Studies have shown that non-validated technology is a primary cause of NASA and DoD mission delays and cost overruns. With the demise of the New Millennium Program within NASA, opportunities for demonstrating technologies in space have been rare. Many technologies are suitable for a flight project after only ground testing. However, some require validation in a relevant or a space flight environment, which cannot be fully tested on the ground or in airborne systems. NASA's Earth Science Technology Program has initiated a nimble program to provide a fairly rapid turn-around of space validated technologies, and thereby reducing future mission risk in incorporating new technologies. The program, called In-Space Validation of Earth Science Technology (InVEST), now has five tasks in development. Each are 3U CubeSats and they are targeted for launch opportunities in the 2016 time period. Prior to formalizing an InVEST program, the technology program office was asked to demonstrate how the program would work and what sort of technologies could benefit from space validation. Three projects were developed and launched, and have demonstrated the technologies that they set out to validate. This paper will provide a brief status of the pre-InVEST CubeSats, and discuss the development and status of the InVEST program. Figure

  5. 77 FR 64544 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-10-22

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans AGENCY: Bureau of Reclamation, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. SUMMARY: The following Water Management Plans are... establish and administer an office on Central Valley Project water conservation best management...

  6. 76 FR 54251 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-08-31

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans AGENCY: Bureau of Reclamation, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. SUMMARY: The following Water Management Plans are... Central Valley Project water conservation best management practices that shall ``develop criteria...

  7. 78 FR 21414 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-04-10

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans AGENCY: Bureau of Reclamation, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. SUMMARY: The following Water Management Plans are... an office on Central Valley Project water conservation best management practices that shall...

  8. Integrated and comparative geophysical studies of crustal structure of pull-apart basins: The Salton Trough and Death Valley, California regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hussein, Musa Jad

    I have constructed new crustal scale models of two pull apart basins, the Salton Trough of southwestern California, which is inferred to be an incipient ocean basin and Death Valley to the east of the Salton Trough, which is a highly extended continental basin. For this work I have used receiver functions, controlled source seismic, gravity and magnetic data to constrain crustal structure. Analysis of gravity data shows that the anomalies in the Salton Trough are deeper than anomalies of Death Valley. My modeling suggests the Moho is 21 km deep south of the Salton Sea and deepens to 33 km in the region west of the Salton Trough, while in Death Valley the Moho is 26 km deep in the central part of the basin and deepens to 32 km on either side. Another significant difference between the two basins is the density of the lower crust, which is 2950 kg/m3 for the Salton Trough and 2750 kg/m3 for Death Valley. Density of the upper crust varies from 2750 kg/m3 to 2450 kg/m3 in the Salton Trough and from 2650 kg/m3 to 2450 kg/m3 in Death Valley. Sedimentary rocks and meta-sedimentary rocks in Death Valley are thick and reach a depth of 15 km, while in the Salton Trough the depth of sedimentary rocks and metasedimentary rocks is 8-9 km. The Salton Trough is formed from magmatism in the lower crust and sedimentation in the upper crust. Rising of upper mantle material causes uplifting, thinning, and crustal extension (rifting) in the central part of the Salton Trough south of the Salton Sea, and in the southern part of Death Valley. Magnetic anomalies are shallow in both regions. The anomalies in Death Valley show higher relief (˜ 420 nT, compared to 250 nT) than in Salton Trough. Salton Trough magnetic anomalies are almost flat with some exceptions in the marginal areas. Curie point depth (CPD) in the Salton Trough ranges from 14-22 km, which is consistent with other geothermal studies and measurements, while measurements for Death Valley CPD range from 12-35 Km.

  9. Winter habitat associations of diurnal raptors in Californias Central Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pandolrno, E.R.; Herzog, M.P.; Hooper, S.L.; Smith, Z.

    2011-01-01

    The wintering raptors of California's Central Valley are abundant and diverse. Despite this, little information exists on the habitats used by these birds in winter. We recorded diurnal raptors along 19 roadside survey routes throughout the Central Valley for three consecutive winters between 2007 and 2010. We obtained data sufficient to determine significant positive and negative habitat associations for the White-tailed Kite (Elanus leucurus), Bald Eagle {Haliaeetus leucocephalus), Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus), Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), Ferruginous Hawk (Buteo regalis), Rough-legged Hawk (Buteo lagopus), American Kestrel (Falco sparverius), and Prairie Falcon (Falco mexicanus). The Prairie Falcon and Ferruginous and Rough-legged hawks showed expected strong positive associations with grasslands. The Bald Eagle and Northern Harrier were positively associated not only with wetlands but also with rice. The strongest positive association for the White-tailed Kite was with wetlands. The Red-tailed Hawk was positively associated with a variety of habitat types but most strongly with wetlands and rice. The American Kestrel, Northern Harrier, and White-tailed Kite were positively associated with alfalfa. Nearly all species were negatively associated with urbanized landscapes, orchards, and other intensive forms of agriculture. The White-tailed Kite, Northern Harrier, Redtailed Hawk, Ferruginous Hawk, and American Kestrel showed significant negative associations with oak savanna. Given the rapid conversion of the Central Valley to urban and intensive agricultural uses over the past few decades, these results have important implications for conservation of these wintering raptors in this region.

  10. A neotectonic tour of the Death Valley fault zone, Inyo County

    SciTech Connect

    Wills, C.J.

    1989-09-01

    The Death Valley fault zone has recently been evaluated by the Division of Mines and Geology for zoning under the Alquist-Priolo Special Studies Zones Act of 1972. This act requires the State Geologist to zone for special studies those faults that are sufficiently active and well defined as to constitute a potential hazard to structures from surface faulting or fault creep. The Death Valley fault zone is part of a system of faults that extends over 180 miles (300 km) from Fish Lake Valley in Nevada to the Garlock fault. The northern part of this system, the Northern Death Valley-Furnace Creek fault zone, is an active right-lateral fault zone. The southern part of the system, the Death Valley fault zone, is a right-lateral oblique-slip fault between Furnace Creek and Shoreline Butte. From Shoreline Butte to the Garlock fault, it is a right-lateral strike-slip fault. Landforms along this fault indicate that it is the source of many earthquakes and that it has been active in Holocene time. The heights of the scarps and magnitude of the smallest right-lateral offsets (4 feet; 1.2 m) suggest that the most recent of these events was M 6.5 or larger. The freshness of the geomorphic features and the youth of the offset materials suggest that event occurred late in the Holocene, and that multiple Holocene earthquakes have occurred.

  11. Application of multispectral radar and LANDSAT imagery to geologic mapping in death valley

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Daily, M.; Elachi, C.; Farr, T.; Stromberg, W.; Williams, S.; Schaber, G.

    1978-01-01

    Side-Looking Airborne Radar (SLAR) images, acquired by JPL and Strategic Air Command Systems, and visible and near-infrared LANDSAT imagery were applied to studies of the Quaternary alluvial and evaporite deposits in Death Valley, California. Unprocessed radar imagery revealed considerable variation in microwave backscatter, generally correlated with surface roughness. For Death Valley, LANDSAT imagery is of limited value in discriminating the Quaternary units except for alluvial units distinguishable by presence or absence of desert varnish or evaporite units whose extremely rough surfaces are strongly shadowed. In contrast, radar returns are most strongly dependent on surface roughness, a property more strongly correlated with surficial geology than is surface chemistry.

  12. Mapping playa evaporite minerals with AVIRIS data - A first report from Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crowley, James K.

    1993-01-01

    The feasibility of using imaging spectrometry in studies of playa evaporites is demonstrated by mapping efflorescent salt crusts in Death Valley (California), using Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) data and a recently developed least-squares spectral band-fitting algorithm. It is shown that it was possible to remotely identify eight different saline minerals, including three borates that have not been previously reported for the Death Valley efflorescent crusts: hydroboracite, pinnoite, and rivadavite. The three borates are locally important phases in the crusts; at least one of them, rivadavite, appears to be forming directly from brine.

  13. Comparison of inversion models using AIRSAR data for Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kierein-Young, Kathryn S.

    1993-01-01

    Polarimetric Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (AIRSAR) data were collected for the Geologic Remote Sensing Field Experiment (GRSFE) over Death Valley, California, USA, in September 1989. AIRSAR is a four-look, quid-polarizaiton, three frequency instrument. It collects measurements at C-band (5.66 cm), L-band (23.98 cm), and P-band (68.13 cm), and has a GIFOV of 10 meters and a swath width of 12 kilometers. Because the radar measures at three wavelengths, different scales of surface roughness are measured. Also, dielectric constants can be calculated from the data. The scene used in this study is in Death Valley, California and is located over Trail Canyon alluvial fan, the valley floor, and Artists Drive alluvial fan. The fans are very different in mineralogic makeup, size, and surface roughness. Trail Canyon fan is located on the west side of the valley at the base of the Panamint Range and is a large fan with older areas of desert pavement and younger active channels. The source for the material on southern part of the fan is mostly quartzites and there is an area of carbonate source on the northern part of the fan. Artists Drive fan is located at the base of the Black Mountains on the east side of the valley and is a smaller, young fan with its source mostly from volcanic rocks. The valley floor contains playa and salt deposits that range from smooth to Devil's Golf course type salt pinnacles.

  14. Isotopic evidence for climatic influence on alluvial-fan development in Death Valley, California

    SciTech Connect

    Dorn, R.I.; DeNiro, M.J.; Ajie, H.O.

    1987-02-01

    At least three semiarid to arid cycles are recorded by ..delta../sup 13/C values of organic matter in layers of rock varnishes on surfaces of Hanaupah Canyon and Johnson Canyon alluvial fans, Death Valley, California. These isotopic paleoenvironmental signals are interpreted as indicating major periods of fan aggradation during relatively more humid periods and fan entrenchment during subsequent lengthy arid periods.

  15. Diversity of bacteria and archaea in hypersaline sediment from Death Valley National Park, California

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objective of this study was to phylogenetically analyze microorganisms from the domains Bacteria and Archaea in hypersaline sediment from Death Valley National Park. Using domain-specific primers, a region of the 16S rRNA gene was amplified using PCR, and the product was subsequently used to cr...

  16. Isostatic gravity map of the Death Valley ground-water model area, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ponce, D.A.; Blakely, R.J.; Morin, R.L.; Mankinen, E.A.

    2001-01-01

    An isostatic gravity map of the Death Valley groundwater model area was prepared from over 40,0000 gravity stations as part of an interagency effort by the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Department of Energy to help characterize the geology and hydrology of southwest Nevada and parts of California.

  17. Upper Neogene stratigraphy and tectonics of Death Valley — a review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knott, J. R.; Sarna-Wojcicki, A. M.; Machette, M. N.; Klinger, R. E.

    2005-12-01

    New tephrochronologic, soil-stratigraphic and radiometric-dating studies over the last 10 years have generated a robust numerical stratigraphy for Upper Neogene sedimentary deposits throughout Death Valley. Critical to this improved stratigraphy are correlated or radiometrically-dated tephra beds and tuffs that range in age from > 3.58 Ma to < 1.1 ka. These tephra beds and tuffs establish relations among the Upper Pliocene to Middle Pleistocene sedimentary deposits at Furnace Creek basin, Nova basin, Ubehebe-Lake Rogers basin, Copper Canyon, Artists Drive, Kit Fox Hills, and Confidence Hills. New geologic formations have been described in the Confidence Hills and at Mormon Point. This new geochronology also establishes maximum and minimum ages for Quaternary alluvial fans and Lake Manly deposits. Facies associated with the tephra beds show that ˜3.3 Ma the Furnace Creek basin was a northwest-southeast-trending lake flanked by alluvial fans. This paleolake extended from the Furnace Creek to Ubehebe. Based on the new stratigraphy, the Death Valley fault system can be divided into four main fault zones: the dextral, Quaternary-age Northern Death Valley fault zone; the dextral, pre-Quaternary Furnace Creek fault zone; the oblique-normal Black Mountains fault zone; and the dextral Southern Death Valley fault zone. Post - 3.3 Ma geometric, structural, and kinematic changes in the Black Mountains and Towne Pass fault zones led to the break up of Furnace Creek basin and uplift of the Copper Canyon and Nova basins. Internal kinematics of northern Death Valley are interpreted as either rotation of blocks or normal slip along the northeast-southwest-trending Towne Pass and Tin Mountain fault zones within the Eastern California shear zone.

  18. The evaluation of water storage in Death Valley using GRACE satellite data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sweigart, Maile J.

    As drought conditions spread across the United States, concerns over water supplies, water use, and water management policies are growing and possible contributing environmental factors are continually being scrutinized. This thesis examines Death Valley as an analog for Southern Nevada and utilizes NASA EOS data, combined with ancillary climate data, to assess the effect of decadal climate variability on groundwater storage in the Death Valley area. Historical climate data, combined with satellite imagery observations, were compiled and calculated for analyses. Conclusions derived from statistical analyses infer trends between GRACE (Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment) satellite data and fluctuating levels of recharge and groundwater storage, as well as climatic changes in temperature and rainfall. The observations show seasonal variations in ground water thickness of up to 10 cm from the mean, correlated directly to seasonal temperature variability. Connections were also observed between temperature and precipitation with a correlation factor of -0.5. The relationship between precipitation and groundwater thickness change is also evident, with a correlation factor of 0.4 where evaporation and delayed aquifer response are likely impacting direct correlation. The research illustrates how and which environmental factors are impacting the groundwater storage in Death Valley. Due to the similarity of climates between Death Valley and Southern Nevada, this research may be used as an analogy illustrating the impact of climate variability in Southern Nevada. The research, combining GRACE satellite observations and downscaled historical climate data will show any adverse effects that climate variability may be having on the area, including the impact it has on aquifers, and the impact it has on Death Valley's water supply in general.

  19. Radionuclide transport from yucca Mountain and Inter-basin Flow in Death Valley

    SciTech Connect

    Bredehoeft, J.; Fridrich, C.; King, C.HG.M.

    2007-07-01

    Hydrodynamics and the U.S. Geological survey conducted studies to evaluate far-field issues related to potential transport, by ground water, of radionuclide into Inyo County from Yucca Mountain, including Death Valley, and the evaluation of a connection between the Lower Carbonate Aquifer (LCA) and the biosphere. Our oversight and completed Cooperative Agreement research, and a number of other investigators research indicate that there is groundwater flow between the alluvial and carbonate aquifers both at Yucca Mountain and in Inyo County. The specific purpose of our research was to acquire geological, subsurface geology, and hydrologic data to: 1. Establish the existence of inter-basin flow between the Amargosa Basin and Death Valley Basin, 2. Characterize groundwater flow paths in the LCA through Southern Funeral Mountain Range, and 3. Evaluate the hydraulic connection between the Yucca Mountain repository and the major springs in Death Valley through the LCA. 4. Evaluate the hydraulic connection between the Yucca Mountain repository and Franklin Lake Playa. The hydraulic characterization of the LCA is of critical interest to Inyo County and the U.S. Department of Energy because: 1. The upward gradient in the LCA at Yucca Mountain provides a natural barrier to radionuclide transport, 2. The LCA is a necessary habitat resource for the endangered Devil's Hole pup fish, and 3. The LCA is the primary water supply and source of water to the major springs in Death Valley National Park. This paper presents the results of our study program to evaluate if inter-basin flow exists between the Amargosa and Death Valley Basins through the LCA. The study presents the results of our structural geology analysis of the Southern Funeral Mountain range, geochemical source analysis of spring waters in the region, and a numerical groundwater model to simulate inter-basin flow in the Southern Funeral Mountain range. (authors)

  20. Geologic map of the southern Funeral Mountains including nearby groundwater discharge sites in Death Valley National Park, California and Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fridrich, C.J.; Thompson, R.A.; Slate, J.L.; Berry, M.E.; Machette, M.N.

    2012-01-01

    This 1:50,000-scale geologic map covers the southern part of the Funeral Mountains, and adjoining parts of four structural basins—Furnace Creek, Amargosa Valley, Opera House, and central Death Valley—in California and Nevada. It extends over three full 7.5-minute quadrangles, and parts of eleven others—an area of about 1,000 square kilometers (km2). The boundaries of this map were drawn to include all of the known proximal hydrogeologic features that may affect the flow of groundwater that discharges from springs of the Furnace Creek basin, in the west-central part of the map. These springs provide the main potable water supply for Death Valley National Park. Major hydrogeologic features shown on this map include: (1) springs of the Furnace Creek basin, (2) a large Pleistocene groundwater discharge mound in the northeastern part of the map, (3) the exposed extent of limestones and dolomites that constitute the Paleozoic carbonate aquifer, and (4) the exposed extent of the alluvial conglomerates that constitute the Funeral Formation aquifer.

  1. Comparison of basal Silurian quartzarenites in Great Valley and Valley and Ridge provinces of central Appalachians

    SciTech Connect

    Suter, T.D.

    1987-05-01

    Throughout the Valley and Ridge province of the central Appalachians, the basal Silurian units are the Tuscarora Sandstone (quartzarenite), Rose Hill (Clinton) Formation (shale), and Keefer Sandstone (quartz subgraywacke). In the Great Valley province to the east, the basal Silurian is represented by a single quartzarenite unit, the Massanutten Sandstone. Based on similar thicknesses and stratigraphic positions, it has been assumed that the Massanutten section is equivalent to the Lower Silurian section in the Valley and ridge. Very little work has been done on the petrography of these two sections to see if there are similarities in terms of depositional environment and provenance to support this correlation. The purpose of this study is to compare the quartzarenite portions of the two sections by means of cathodoluminescence. Cathodoluminescence allows characterization of the source terrane (high versus low-temperature quartz) for a sandstone based on the luminescent colors of the quartz grains. Overall, the ratio of brown to blue luminescing quartz in the Tuscarora differs from that of the Massanutten, suggesting a different source area with more low-temperature quartz supplied to the Tuscarora. Furthermore, within the Massanutten, the ratio of brown to blue quartz decreases from the bottom to the top of the section, consistent with an increased input of high-grade metamorphic or igneous quartz through time. The possible differences in source terranes for the Tuscarora and Massanutten Sandstones are in general agreement with paleogeographic models that have been proposed for the area.

  2. A new hypothesis for the amount and distribution of dextral displacement along the Fish Lake Valley-northern Death Valley-Furnace Creek fault zone, California-Nevada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Renik, Byrdie; Christie-Blick, Nicholas

    2013-03-01

    The Fish Lake Valley-northern Death Valley-Furnace Creek fault zone, a ~250 km long, predominantly right-lateral structure in California and Nevada, is a key element in tectonic reconstructions of the Death Valley area, Eastern California Shear Zone and Walker Lane, and central Basin and Range Province. Total displacement on the fault zone is contested, however, with estimates ranging from ~30 to ~63 km or more. Here we present a new synthesis of available constraints. Preextensional thrust faults, folds, and igneous rocks indicate that offset reaches a maximum of ~50 km. Neogene rocks constrain its partitioning over time. Most offset is interpreted as ≤ ~13-10 Ma, accruing at ~3-5 mm/yr in the middle of the fault zone and more slowly toward the tips. The offset markers imply ~68 ± 14 km of translation between the Cottonwood Mountains and Resting Spring-Nopah Range (~60 ± 14 km since ~15 Ma) through a combination of strike slip and crustal extension. This suggests that a previous interpretation of ~104 ± 7 km, based on the middle Miocene Eagle Mountain Formation, is an overestimate by ~50%. Our results also help to mitigate a discrepancy in the ~12-0 Ma strain budget for the Eastern California Shear Zone. Displacement has previously been estimated at ~100 ± 10 km and ~67 ± 6 km for the Basin and Range and Mojave portions of the shear zone, respectively. Our new estimate of ~74 ± 17 km for the Basin and Range is within the uncertainty of the Mojave estimate.

  3. Spatial variations in slip rate along the Death Valley-Fish Lake Valley fault system determined from LiDAR topographic data and cosmogenic 10Be geochronology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frankel, Kurt L.; Dolan, James F.; Finkel, Robert C.; Owen, Lewis A.; Hoeft, Jeffrey S.

    2007-09-01

    The Death Valley-Fish Lake Valley fault zone (DV-FLVFZ) is a prominent dextral fault system in the eastern California shear zone (ECSZ). Combining offset measurements determined with LiDAR topographic data for two alluvial fans with terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide 10Be ages from the fan surfaces yields a late Pleistocene slip rate of ~2.5 to 3 mm/yr for the northern part of the DV-FLVFZ in Fish Lake Valley. These rates are slower than the late Pleistocene rate determined for the system in northern Death Valley, indicating that slip rates decrease northward along this major fault zone. When summed with the slip rate from the White Mountains fault, the other major fault in this part of the ECSZ, our results suggest that either significant deformation is accommodated on structures east of Fish Lake Valley, or that rates of seismic strain accumulation and release have not remained constant over late Pleistocene to Holocene time.

  4. Insiders Views of the Valley of Death Behavioral and Institutional Perspectives

    SciTech Connect

    Wolfe, Amy K; Bjornstad, David J; Shumpert, Barry L; Wang, Stephanie; Lenhardt, W Christopher; Campa Ayala, Maria F

    2014-01-01

    Valley of death describes the metaphorical depths to which promising science and technology too often plunge, never to emerge and reach their full potential. Behavioral and institutional perspectives help in understanding the implications of choices that inadvertently lead into rather than over the valley of death. A workshop conducted among a diverse set of scientists, managers, and technology transfer staff at a U.S. national laboratory is a point of departure for discussing behavioral and institutional elements that promote or impede the pathway from research toward use, and for suggesting actionable measures that can facilitate the flow of information and products from research toward use. In the complex systems that comprise research institutions, where competing pressures can create barriers to information or technology transfer, one recommendation is to re-frame the process as a more active ushering toward use.

  5. Ground-Water Modeling of the Death Valley Region, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belcher, W.R.; Faunt, C.C.; Sweetkind, D.S.; Blainey, J.B.; San Juan, C. A.; Laczniak, R.J.; Hill, M.C.

    2006-01-01

    The Death Valley regional ground-water flow system (DVRFS) of southern Nevada and eastern California covers an area of about 100,000 square kilometers and contains very complex geology and hydrology. Using a computer model to represent the complex system, the U.S. Geological Survey simulated ground-water flow in the Death Valley region for use with U.S. Department of Energy projects in southern Nevada. The model was created to help address contaminant cleanup activities associated with the underground nuclear testing conducted from 1951 to 1992 at the Nevada Test Site and to support the licensing process for the proposed geologic repository for high-level nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain, Nevada.

  6. Quantitative analysis of surface characteristics and morphology in Death Valley, California using AIRSAR data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kierein-Young, K. S.; Kruse, F. A.; Lefkoff, A. B.

    1992-01-01

    The Jet Propulsion Laboratory Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (JPL-AIRSAR) is used to collect full polarimetric measurements at P-, L-, and C-bands. These data are analyzed using the radar analysis and visualization environment (RAVEN). The AIRSAR data are calibrated using in-scene corner reflectors to allow for quantitative analysis of the radar backscatter. RAVEN is used to extract surface characteristics. Inversion models are used to calculate quantitative surface roughness values and fractal dimensions. These values are used to generate synthetic surface plots that represent the small-scale surface structure of areas in Death Valley. These procedures are applied to a playa, smooth salt-pan, and alluvial fan surfaces in Death Valley. Field measurements of surface roughness are used to verify the accuracy.

  7. Permian-Triassic plutonism and tectonics, Death Valley region, California and Nevada

    SciTech Connect

    Snow, J.K.; Asmerom, Y. ); Lux, D.R. )

    1991-06-01

    Significant contractional structures that deform Permian rocks but predate an Early Triassic overlap sequence are recognized within the Cordilleran orogen, western US. Thrusting in the Death Valley region of the orogen, however, has been regarded as Middle Triassic or younger and thus kinematically distinct. The authors present new isotopic age limits on two posttectonic stocks that intrude major structures of the Death Valley thrust belt. The stocks are no younger than Middle Triassic, but are likely Late Permian in age, consistent with stratigraphic and structural data suggesting that thrusting predates the overlap sequence. The authors hypothesize that Permian shortening may have affected more than 700 km of the Cordilleran orogen at the same time arc activity began within cratonic North America but prior to Early Triassic emplacement of the structurally higher Sonomian arc terrane.

  8. An Impact Crater in Palm Valley, Central Australia?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamacher, Duane W.; Buchel, Andrew; O'Neill, Craig; Britton, Tui R.

    2011-05-01

    We explore the origin of a 280 m wide, heavily eroded circular depression in Palm Valley, Northern Territory, Australia using gravity, morphological, and mineralogical data collected from a field survey in September 2009. From the analysis of the survey, we debate probable formation processes, namely erosion and impact, as no evidence of volcanism is found in the region or reported in the literature. We argue that the depression was not formed by erosion and consider an impact origin, although we acknowledge that diagnostics required to identify it as such (e.g. meteorite fragments, shatter cones, shocked quartz) are lacking, leaving the formation process uncertain. We encourage further discussion of the depression's origin and stress a need to develop recognition criteria that can help identify small, ancient impact craters. We also encourage systematic searches for impact craters in Central Australia as it is probable that many more remain to be discovered.

  9. Integration of AIRSAR and AVIRIS data for Trail Canyon alluvial fan, Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kierein-Young, Kathryn S.

    1995-01-01

    Combining quantitative geophysical information extracted from the optical and microwave wavelengths provides complementary information about both the surface mineralogy and morphology. This study combines inversion results from two remote sensing instruments, a polarimetric synthetic aperture radar, AIRSAR, and an imaging spectrometer, AVIRIS, for Trail Canyon alluvial fan in Death Valley, California. The NASA/JPL Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (AIRSAR) is a quad-polarization, three frequency instrument. AIRSAR collects data at C-band = 5.66 cm, L-band = 23.98 cm, and P-band = 68.13 cm. The data are processed to four-looks and have a spatial resolution of 10 m and a swath width of 12 km. The AIRSAR data used in this study were collected as part of the Geologic Remote Sensing Field Experiment (GRSFE) over Death Valley on 9/14/89. The Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) is a NASA/JPL instrument that flies in an ER-2 aircraft at an altitude of 20 km. AVIRIS uses four spectrometers to collect data in 224 spectral channels from 0.4 micrometer to 2.45 micrometer. The width of each spectral band is approximately 10 nm. AVIRIS collects data with a swath width of 11 km and a pixel size of 20 m. The AVIRIS data used in this study were collected over Death Valley on 5/31/92.

  10. 200 k.y. paleoclimate record from Death Valley salt core

    SciTech Connect

    Lowenstein, T.K.; Li, J.; Brown, C.; Roberts, S.M.; Ku, T.L.; Luo, S.; Yang, W.

    1999-01-01

    A 186-m-long core (DV93-1) from Death Valley, California, composed of interbedded salts and muds contains a 200 k.y. record of closed-basin environments and paleoclimates, interpreted on the basis of sedimentology, ostracodes, homogenization temperatures of fluid inclusions in halite, and correlation with shoreline tufa. The 200 k.y. paleoclimate record is dominated by two dry and/or warm and wet and cold cycles that occurred on a 100 k.y. time scale. These cycles begin with mud-flat deposits (192 ka to bottom of core, and 60 ka to 120 ka). Wetter and/or colder conditions produced greater effective moisture; saline pan and shallow saline lake evaporites overlie mud-flat sediments (186 ka to 192 ka and 35 ka to 60 ks). Eventually, enough water entered Death Valley to sustain perennial lakes that had fluctuating water levels and salinities (120 ka to 186 ka and 10 ka to 35 ka). When more arid conditions returned, mud-flat deposits accumulated on top of the perennial lake sediments, completing the cycle (120 ka and 10 ka). Of particular significance are the major lacustrine phases, 10 ka to 35 ka and 120 ka to 186 ka (oxygen isotope stages 2 and 5e--6), which represent markedly colder and wetter conditions than those of modern Death Valley. Of the two major lake periods, the penultimate glacial lakes were deeper and far longer lasting than those of the last glacial.

  11. Mapping Drought Impacts on Agricultural Production in California's Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melton, F. S.; Guzman, A.; Johnson, L.; Rosevelt, C.; Verdin, J. P.; Dwyer, J. L.; Mueller, R.; Zakzeski, A.; Thenkabail, P. S.; Wallace, C.; Jones, J.; Windell, S.; Urness, J.; Teaby, A.; Hamblin, D.; Post, K. M.; Nemani, R. R.

    2014-12-01

    The ongoing drought in California has substantially reduced surface water supplies for millions of acres of irrigated farmland in California's Central Valley. Rapid assessment of drought impacts on agricultural production can aid water managers in assessing mitigation options, and guide decision making with respect to requests for local water transfers, county drought disaster designations, and allocation of emergency funds to mitigate drought impacts. Satellite remote sensing offers an efficient way to provide quantitative assessments of drought impacts on agricultural production and increases in idle acreage associated with reductions in water supply. A key advantage of satellite-based assessments is that they can provide a measure of land fallowing that is consistent across both space and time. We describe an approach for monthly and seasonal mapping of uncultivated agricultural acreage developed as part of a joint effort by USGS, USDA, NASA, and the California Department of Water Resources to provide timely assessments of land fallowing during drought events. This effort has used the Central Valley of California as a pilot region for development and testing of an operational approach. To provide quantitative measures of uncultivated agricultural acreage from satellite data early in the season, we developed a decision tree algorithm and applied it to timeseries of data from Landsat TM, ETM+, OLI, and MODIS. Our effort has been focused on development of indicators of drought impacts in the March - August timeframe based on measures of crop development patterns relative to a reference period with average or above average rainfall. To assess the accuracy of the algorithms, monthly ground validation surveys were conducted across 640 fields from March - September, 2014. We present the algorithm along with updated results from the accuracy assessment, and discuss potential applications to other regions.

  12. Rift Valley fever outbreak with East-Central African virus lineage in Mauritania, 2003.

    PubMed

    Faye, Ousmane; Diallo, Mawlouth; Diop, Djibril; Bezeid, O Elmamy; Bâ, Hampathé; Niang, Mbayame; Dia, Ibrahima; Mohamed, Sid Ahmed Ould; Ndiaye, Kader; Diallo, Diawo; Ly, Peinda Ogo; Diallo, Boubacar; Nabeth, Pierre; Simon, François; Lô, Baïdy; Diop, Ousmane Madiagne

    2007-07-01

    In October 2003, 9 human cases of hemorrhagic fever were reported in 3 provinces of Mauritania, West Africa. Test results showed acute Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) infection, and a field investigation found recent circulation of RVFV with a prevalence rate of 25.5% (25/98) and 4 deaths among the 25 laboratory-confirmed case-patients. Immunoglobulin M against RVFV was found in 46% (25/54) of domestic animals. RVFV was also isolated from the mosquito species Culex poicilipes. Genetic comparison of virion segments indicated little variation among the strains isolated. However, phylogenetic studies clearly demonstrated that these strains belonged to the East-Central African lineage for all segments. To our knowledge, this is the first time viruses of this lineage have been observed in an outbreak in West Africa. Whether these strains were introduced or are endemic in West Africa remains to be determined. PMID:18214173

  13. Hydrogeology of Palm Valley, central Australia; a Pleistocene flora refuge?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wischusen, John D. H.; Fifield, L. Keith; Cresswell, Richard G.

    2004-06-01

    The Palm Valley Oasis (Finke Gorge National Park) in arid central Australia is characterised by large stands of red cabbage palm trees ( Livistona mariae). How these unique plants, over 1000 km away from nearest relatives in the tropical parts of northern Australia persist, has long fascinated visitors. The hydrogeology of this area helps explain this phenomenon. Stable isotope (δ 2H, δ 8O) analyses shows groundwater to have a uniform composition that plots on or near a local meteoric water line. Carbon-14 results are observed to vary throughout this aquifer from effectively dead (<4%) to 87% modern carbon. Ratios of chlorine-36 to chloride range from 130 to 290×10 -1536Cl/Cl. In this region atmospheric 36Cl/Cl ratio is around 300×10 -15. Thus an age range of around 300 ka is indicated if, as is apparent radioactive decay is the only significant cause of 36Cl/Cl variation within the aquifer. The classic homogenous aquifer with varying surface topography flow model is the simplest conceptual model that need be invoked to explain these data. Complexities, associated with local topography flow cells superimposed on the regional gradient, may mean groundwater with markedly different flow path lengths has been sampled. This potential flow path complexity, which is also evidenced by slight variation in groundwater cation ratios, can account for the distribution of isotope age data throughout the aquifer. Given the likely very slow travel times indicated by this aquifer's hydraulic properties, age differences of the magnitude indicated from chlorine-36 data are feasible. The likely slow travel times (>100 ka) along some flow paths indicate groundwater discharge would endure through arid phases associated with Quaternary climate oscillations. Such a flow system can explain the persistence of this population of Palms and also highlight the possibility that Palm Valley has acted as a flora refuge since at least the mid Pleistocene.

  14. A Hydrogeologic Map of the Death Valley Region, Nevada and California, Developed Using GIS Techniques

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Faunt, Claudia C.; D'Agnese, Frank A.; Turner, A. Keith

    1997-01-01

    In support of Yucca Mountain site characterization studies, a hydrogeologic framework was developed, and a hydrogeologic map was constructed for the Death Valley region. The region, covering approximately 100,000 km 2 along the Nevada-California border near Las Vegas, is characterized by isolated mountain ranges juxtaposed against broad, alluvium-filled valleys. Geologic conditions are typical of the Basin and Range Province; a variety of sedimentary and igneous intrusive and extrusive rocks have been subjected to both compressional and extensional deformation. The regional ground-water flow system can best be described as a series of connected intermontane basins in which ground-water flow occurs in basin-fill deposits, carbonate rocks, clastic rocks, and volcanic rocks. Previous investigations have developed more site-specific hydrogeologic relationships; however, few have described all the lithologies within the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system. Information required to characterize the hydrogeologic units in the region was obtained from regional geologic maps and reports. Map data were digitized from regional geologic maps and combined into a composite map using a geographic information system. This map was simplified to show 10 laterally extensive hydrogeologic units with distinct hydrologic properties. The hydraulic conductivity values for the hydrogeologic units range over 15 orders of magnitude due to the variability in burial depth and degree of fracturing.

  15. A hydrogeologic map of the Death Valley region, Nevada, and California, developed using GIS techniques

    SciTech Connect

    Faunt, C.C.; D`Agnese, F.A.; Turner, A.K.

    1997-12-31

    In support of Yucca Mountain site characterization studies, a hydrogeologic framework was developed, and a hydrogeologic map was constructed for the Death Valley region. The region, covering approximately 100,000 km{sup 2} along the Nevada-California border near Las Vegas, is characterized by isolated mountain ranges juxtaposed against broad, alluvium-filled valleys. Geologic conditions are typical of the Basin and Range Province; a variety of sedimentary and igneous intrusive and extrusive rocks have been subjected to both compressional and extensional deformation. The regional ground-water flow system can best be described as a series of connected intermontane basins in which ground-water flow occurs in basin-fill deposits, carbonate rocks, clastic rocks, and volcanic rocks. Previous investigations have developed more site-specific hydrogeologic relationships; however, few have described all the lithologies within the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system. Information required to characterize the hydrogeologic units in the region was obtained from regional geologic maps and reports. Map data were digitized from regional geologic maps and combined into a composite map using a geographic information system. This map was simplified to show 10 laterally extensive hydrogeologic units with distinct hydrologic properties. The hydraulic conductivity values for the hydrogeologic units range over 15 orders of magnitude due to the variability in burial depth and degree of fracturing.

  16. Appraisal of the water resources of Death Valley, California-Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miller, Glenn Allen

    1977-01-01

    The hydrologic system in Death Valley is probably in a steady-state condition--that is, recharge and discharge are equal, and net changes in the quantity of ground water in storage are not occurring. Recharge to ground water in the valley is derived from interbasin underflow and from local precipitation. The two sources may be of the same magnitude. Ground water beneath the valley moves toward the lowest area, a 200-square-mile saltpan, much of which is underlain by rock salt and other saline minerals, probably to depths of hundreds of feet or even more than 1,000 feet. Some water discharges from the saltpan by evaportranspiration. Water beneath the valley floor, excluding the saltpan, typically contains between 3,000 and 5,000 milligrams per liter of dissolved solids. Water from most springs and seeps in the mountains contains a few hundred to several hundred milligrams per liter of dissolved solids. Water from large springs that probably discharge from interbasin flow systems typically contains between 500 and 1,000 milligrams per liter dissolved solids. Present sites of intensive use by man are supplied by springs, with the exception of the Stovepipe Wells Hotel area. Potential sources of supply for this area include (1) Emigrant Spring area, (2) Cottonwood Spring, and (3) northern Mesquite Flat. (Woodard-USGS)

  17. An evaluation of Skylab (EREP) remote sensing techniques applied to investigation of crustal structure. [Death Valley and Greenwater Valley (CA)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bechtold, I. C. (Principal Investigator)

    1974-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. A study of Greenwater Valley indicates that the valley is bounded on the north and east by faults, on the south by a basement high, and on the west by the dip slope of the black mountains, movement of ground water from the valley is thus Movement of ground water from the valley is thus restricted, indicating the valley is a potential water reservoir.

  18. Emission rates of organics from vegetation in California's Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winer, Arthur M.; Arey, Janet; Atkinson, Roger; Aschmann, Sara M.; Long, William D.; Morrison, C. Lynn; Olszyk, David M.

    Rates of emission of speciated hydrocarbons have been determined for more than 30 of the most dominant (based on acreage) agricultural and natural plant types found in California's Central Valley. These measurements employed flow-through Teflon chambers, sample collection on solid adsorbent and thermal desorption gas chromatography (GC) and GC-mass spectrometry analysis to identify more than 40 individual organic compounds. In addition to isoprene and the monoterpenes, we observed sesquiterpenes, alcohols, acetates, aldehydes, ketones, ethers, esters, alkanes, alkenes and aromatics as emissions from these plant species. Mean emission rates for total monoterpenes ranged from none detected in the case of beans, grapes, rice and wheat, to as high as 12-30 μg h -1 g -1 for pistachio and tomato (normalized to dry leaf and total biomass, respectively). Other agricultural species exhibiting substantial rates of emission of monoterpenes included carrot, cotton, lemon, orange and walnut. All of the plant species studied showed total assigned compound emission rates in the range between 0.1 and 36 νg h -1 g -1.

  19. AVIRIS study of Death Valley evaporite deposits using least-squares band-fitting methods

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crowley, J. K.; Clark, R. N.

    1992-01-01

    Minerals found in playa evaporite deposits reflect the chemically diverse origins of ground waters in arid regions. Recently, it was discovered that many playa minerals exhibit diagnostic visible and near-infrared (0.4-2.5 micron) absorption bands that provide a remote sensing basis for observing important compositional details of desert ground water systems. The study of such systems is relevant to understanding solute acquisition, transport, and fractionation processes that are active in the subsurface. Observations of playa evaporites may also be useful for monitoring the hydrologic response of desert basins to changing climatic conditions on regional and global scales. Ongoing work using Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) data to map evaporite minerals in the Death Valley salt pan is described. The AVIRIS data point to differences in inflow water chemistry in different parts of the Death Valley playa system and have led to the discovery of at least two new North American mineral occurrences. Seven segments of AVIRIS data were acquired over Death Valley on 31 July 1990, and were calibrated to reflectance by using the spectrum of a uniform area of alluvium near the salt pan. The calibrated data were subsequently analyzed by using least-squares spectral band-fitting methods, first described by Clark and others. In the band-fitting procedure, AVIRIS spectra are fit compared over selected wavelength intervals to a series of library reference spectra. Output images showing the degree of fit, band depth, and fit times the band depth are generated for each reference spectrum. The reference spectra used in the study included laboratory data for 35 pure evaporite spectra extracted from the AVIRIS image cube. Additional details of the band-fitting technique are provided by Clark and others elsewhere in this volume.

  20. Mapping playa evaporite minerals and associated sediments in Death Valley, California, with multispectral thermal infrared images

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crowley, J.K.; Hook, S.J.

    1996-01-01

    Efflorescent salt crusts and associated sediments in Death Valley, California, were studied with remote-sensing data acquired by the NASA thermal infrared multispectral scanner (TIMS). Nine spectral classes that represent a variety of surface materials were distinguished, including several classes that reflect important aspects of the playa groundwater chemistry and hydrology. Evaporite crusts containing abundant thenardite (sodium sulfate) were mapped along the northern and eastern margins of the Cottonball Basin, areas where the inflow waters are rich in sodium. Gypsum (calcium sulfate) crusts were more common in the Badwater Basin, particularly near springs associated with calcic groundwaters along the western basin margin. Evaporite-rich crusts generally marked areas where groundwater is periodically near the surface and thus able to replenish the crusts though capillary evaporation. Detrital silicate minerals were prevalent in other parts of the salt pan where shallow groundwater does not affect the surface composition. The surface features in Death Valley change in response to climatic variations on several different timescales. For example, salt crusts on low-lying mudflats form and redissolve during seasonal-to-interannual cycles of wetting and desiccation. In contrast, recent flooding and erosion of rough-salt surfaces in Death Valley probably reflect increased regional precipitation spanning several decades. Remote-sensing observations of playas can provide a means for monitoring changes in evaporite facies and for better understanding the associated climatic processes. At present, such studies are limited by the availability of suitable airborne scanner data. However, with the launch of the Earth Observing System (EOS) AM-1 Platform in 1998, multispectral visible/near-infrared and thermal infrared remote-sensing data will become globally available. Copyright 1996 by the American Geophysical Union.

  1. Mapping playa evaporite minerals with AVIRIS data: A first report from death valley, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crowley, J.K.

    1993-01-01

    Efflorescent salt crusts in Death Valley, California, were mapped by using Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) data and a recently developed least-squares spectral band-fitting algorithm. Eight different saline minerals were remotely identified, including three borates, hydroboracite, pinnoite, and rivadavite, that have not been previously reported from the Death Valley efflorescent crusts. The three borates are locally important phases in the crusts, and at least one of the minerals, rivadavite, appears to be forming directly from brine. Borates and other evaporite minerals provide a basis for making remote chemical measurements of desert hydrologic systems. For example, in the Eagle Borax Spring area, the AVIRIS mineral maps pointed to elevated magnesium and boron levels in the ground waters, and to the action of chemical divides causing subsurface fractionation of calcium. Many other chemical aspects of playa brines should have an expression in the associated evaporite assemblages. Certain anhydrous evaporites, including anhydrite, glauberite, and thenardite, lack absorption bands in the visible and near-infrared wavelength range, and crusts composed of these minerals could not be characterized by using AVIRIS. In these situations, thermal-infrared remote sensing data may complement visible and near-infrared data for mapping evaporites. Another problem occurred in wet areas of Death Valley, where water absorption caused low signal levels in the 2.0-2.5 ??m wavelength region that obscured any spectral features of evaporite minerals. Despite these difficulties, the results of this study demonstrate the potential for using AVIRIS and other imaging spectrometer data to study playa chemistry. Such data can be useful for understanding chemical linkages between evaporites and ground waters, and will facilitate studies of how desert ground-water regimes change through time in response to climatic and other variables. ?? 1993.

  2. Late Cenozoic crustal extension and magmatism, southern Death Valley region, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Calzia, J.P.; Rämö, O.T.

    2000-01-01

    The late Cenozoic geologic history of the southern Death Valley region is characterized by coeval crustal extension and magamatism. Crustal extension is accommodated by numerous listric and planar normal faults as well as right- and left-lateral strike slip faults. The normal faults sip 30°-50° near the surface and flatten and merge leozoic miogeoclinal rocks; the strike-slip faults act as tear faults between crustal blocks that have extended at different times and at different rates. Crustal extension began 13.4-13.1 Ma and migrated northwestward with time; undeformed basalt flows and lacustrine deposits suggest that extension stopped in this region (but continued north of the Death Valley graben) between 5 and 7 Ma. Estimates of crustal extension in this region vary from 30-50 percent to more than 100 percent. Magmatic rocks syntectonic with crustal extension in the southern Death Valley region include 12.4-6.4 Ma granitic rocks as well as bimodal 14.0-4.0 Ma volcanic rocks. Geochemical and isotopic evidence suggest that the granitic rocks get younger and less alkalic from south to north; the volcanic rocks become more mafic with less evidence of crustal interaction as they get younger. The close spatial and temporal relation between crustal extension and magmatism suggest a genetic and probably a dynamic relation between these geologic processes. We propose a rectonic-magmatic model that requires heat to be transported into the crust by mantle-derived mafic magmas. These magmas pond at lithologic or rheologic boundaries, begin the crystallize, and partially melt the surrounding crustal rocks. With time, the thermally weakened crust is extended (given a regional extensional stress field) concurrent with granitic magmatism and bimodal volcanism.

  3. The timing of fault motion in Death Valley from Illite Age Analysis of fault gouge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lynch, E. A.; Haines, S. H.; Van der Pluijm, B.

    2014-12-01

    We constrained the timing of fluid circulation and associated fault motion in the Death Valley region of the US Basin and Range Province from Illite Age Analysis (IAA) of fault gouge at seven Low-Angle Normal Fault (LANF) exposures in the Black Mountains and Panamint Mountains, and in two nearby areas. 40Ar/39Ar ages of neoformed, illitic clay minerals in these fault zones range from 2.8 Ma to 18.6 Ma, preserving asynchronous fault motion across the region that corresponds to an evolving history of crustal block movements during Neogene extensional deformation. From north to south, along the western side of the Panamint Range, the Mosaic Canyon fault yields an authigenic illite age of 16.9±2.9 Ma, the Emigrant fault has ages of less than 10-12 Ma at Tucki Mountain and Wildrose Canyon, and an age of 3.6±0.17 Ma was obtained for the Panamint Front Range LANF at South Park Canyon. Across Death Valley, along the western side of the Black Mountains, Ar ages of clay minerals are 3.2±3.9 Ma, 12.2±0.13 Ma and 2.8±0.45 Ma for the Amargosa Detachment, the Gregory Peak Fault and the Mormon Point Turtleback detachment, respectively. Complementary analysis of the δH composition of neoformed clays shows a primarily meteoric source for the mineralizing fluids in these LANF zones. The ages fall into two geologic timespans, reflecting activity pulses in the Middle Miocene and in the Upper Pliocene. Activity on both of the range front LANFs does not appear to be localized on any single portion of these fault systems. Middle Miocene fault rock ages of neoformed clays were also obtained in the Ruby Mountains (10.5±1.2 Ma) to the north of the Death Valley region and to the south in the Whipple Mountains (14.3±0.19 Ma). The presence of similar, bracketed times of activity indicate that LANFs in the Death Valley region were tectonically linked, while isotopic signatures indicate that faulting pulses involved surface fluid penetration.

  4. Declining rock movement at Racetrack Playa, Death Valley National Park: An indicator of climate change?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lorenz, Ralph D.; Jackson, Brian K.

    2014-04-01

    We have inspected Racetrack Playa at Death Valley over the last 7 years and have not observed major episodes of rock movement and trail generation. We compare this null observation with the literature record of the rock movement using a Monte Carlo method and find 4-to-1 odds that the rock movement probability has systematically declined. This statistically significant drop in movement rate may indicate a change in the probability of the required conditions for movement: we note decline in the occurrence of strong winds and in ice-forming cold in nearby weather records. Rock movement and trail formation may serve as an indicator of climate change.

  5. Geological study of uranium potential of the Kingston Peak Formation, Death Valley Region, California

    SciTech Connect

    Carlisle, D.; Kettler, R.M.; Swanson, S.C.

    1980-09-01

    The results of a geological survey of the Kingston Peak Formation on the western slope of the Panamint Range near Death Valley are discussed. The geology of the Panamint mountains was mapped on topographic base maps of the Telescope Peak and Manly Peak quadrangles. Radiometric suveys of the area were conducted using gamma ray spectrometers. Samples of the conglomerate were analyzed using delayed neutron, neutron activation, atomic absorption, and LECO analysis. It is concluded that uranium mineralization in the Favorable Submember is significant and further exploration is warranted. The monazite-fenotime related uranium and thorium mineralization in the Mountain Girl quartz pebble conglomerate is of no economic interest. (DMC)

  6. Stable sulfur isotope hydrogeochemical studies using desert shrubs and tree rings, Death Valley, California, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Wenbo; Spencer, Ronald J.; Krouse, H. Roy

    1996-08-01

    The δ 34S values of two dominant xerophytes, Atriplex hymenehytra and Larrea tridentata, in Death Valley, California, vary similarly from +7 to +18‰, corresponding isotopically to sulfate in the water supplies at a given location. Going radially outwards, tree ring data from a phreatophyte tree, Tamarix aphylla, show a distinct time dependence, with δ 34S values increasing from +13.5 to +18‰ for soluble sulfate and from +12 to +17‰ for total sulfur. These data are interpreted in terms of sulfur sources, water sources and flow paths, and tree root growth.

  7. Stable sulfur isotope hydrogeochemical studies using desert shrubs and tree rings, Death Valley, California, USA

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Wenbo; Spencer, R.J.; Krouse, H.R.

    1996-08-01

    The {delta}{sup 34}S values of two dominant xerophytes, Atriplex hymenehytra and Larrea tridentata, in Death Valley, California, vary similarly from +7 to +18{per_thousand}, corresponding isotopically to sulfate in the water supplies at a given location. Going radially outwards, tree ring data from a phreatophyte tree, Tamarix aphylla, show a distinct time dependence, with {delta}{sup 34}S values increasing from +13.5 to +18{per_thousand} for soluble sulfate and from +12 to +17% for total sulfur. These data are interpreted in terms of sulfur sources, water sources and flow paths, and tree root growth. 32 refs., 3 figs., 3 tabs.

  8. From Research to Flight: Surviving the TRL Valley of Death for Robotic and Human Space Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Les

    2009-01-01

    There must be a plan or opportunities for flight validation: a) To reduce the bottleneck of new technologies at the TRL Valley of Death; b) To allow frequent infusion of new technologies into flight missions. Risk must be tolerated for new technology flight experiments. Risk must also be accepted on early-adopting missions to enable new capabilities. Fundamental research is critical to taking the next giant leap in the scientific exploration of space. Technology push is often required to meet current mission requirements. Technology management requires more than issuing NRAs and overseeing contracts.

  9. Identification of carotenoids in ancient salt from Death Valley, Saline Valley, and Searles Lake, California, using laser Raman spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Winters, Y D; Lowenstein, T K; Timofeeff, M N

    2013-11-01

    Carotenoids are common components of many photosynthetic organisms and are well known from the red waters of hypersaline ecosystems where they are produced by halophilic algae and prokaryotes. They are also of great interest as biomarkers in extraterrestrial samples. Few laser Raman spectroscopy studies have examined ancient field samples, where pigments and microscopic life are less defined. Here, we have identified carotenoids in ancient halite brine inclusions, 9 ka to 1.44 Ma in age, from borehole cores taken from Death Valley, Saline Valley, and Searles Lake, California, for the first time with laser Raman spectroscopy. Carotenoids occurred in fluid inclusions as colorless to red-brown amorphous and crystalline masses associated with spheroidal algal cells similar in appearance to the common halophilic alga Dunaliella. Spectra from carotenoid standards, including β-carotene, lycopene, and lutein, were compared to microscopically targeted carotenoids in fluid inclusions. Carotenoids produced characteristic bands in the Raman spectrum, 1000-1020 cm⁻¹ (v₃), 1150-1170 cm⁻¹ (v₂), and 1500-1550 cm⁻¹ (v₁), when exposed to visible laser excitation. Laser Raman analyses confirmed the presence of carotenoids with these characteristic peaks in ancient halite. A number of band sets were repeated at various depths (ages), which suggests the stability of this class of organic molecules. Carotenoids appear well preserved in ancient salt, which supports other observations, for example, preserved DNA and live cells, that fluid inclusions in buried halite deposits preserve intact halophilic microbial ecosystems. This work demonstrates the value of laser Raman spectroscopy and carotenoids in extraterrestrial exploration for remnants of microbial life. PMID:24283928

  10. Interbasin flow in the Great Basin with special reference to the southern Funeral Mountains and the source of Furnace Creek springs, Death Valley, California, U.S.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belcher, W.R.; Bedinger, M.S.; Back, J.T.; Sweetkind, D.S.

    2009-01-01

    Interbasin flow in the Great Basin has been established by scientific studies during the past century. While not occurring uniformly between all basins, its occurrence is common and is a function of the hydraulic gradient between basins and hydraulic conductivity of the intervening rocks. The Furnace Creek springs in Death Valley, California are an example of large volume springs that are widely accepted as being the discharge points of regional interbasin flow. The flow path has been interpreted historically to be through consolidated Paleozoic carbonate rocks in the southern Funeral Mountains. This work reviews the preponderance of evidence supporting the concept of interbasin flow in the Death Valley region and the Great Basin and addresses the conceptual model of pluvial and recent recharge [Nelson, S.T., Anderson, K., Mayo, A.L., 2004. Testing the interbasin flow hypothesis at Death Valley, California. EOS 85, 349; Anderson, K., Nelson, S., Mayo, A., Tingey, D., 2006. Interbasin flow revisited: the contribution of local recharge to high-discharge springs, Death Valley, California. Journal of Hydrology 323, 276-302] as the source of the Furnace Creek springs. We find that there is insufficient modern recharge and insufficient storage potential and permeability within the basin-fill units in the Furnace Creek basin for these to serve as a local aquifer. Further, the lack of high sulfate content in the spring waters argues against significant flow through basin-fill sediments and instead suggests flow through underlying consolidated carbonate rocks. The maximum temperature of the spring discharge appears to require deep circulation through consolidated rocks; the Tertiary basin fill is of insufficient thickness to generate such temperatures as a result of local fluid circulation. Finally, the stable isotope data and chemical mass balance modeling actually support the interbasin flow conceptual model rather than the alternative presented in Nelson et al. [Nelson, S.T., Anderson, K., Mayo, A.L., 2004. Testing the interbasin flow hypothesis at Death Valley, California. EOS 85, 349] and Anderson et al. [Anderson, K., Nelson, S., Mayo, A., Tingey, D., 2006. Interbasin flow revisited: the contribution of local recharge to high-discharge springs, Death Valley, California. Journal of Hydrology 323, 276-302]. In light of these inconsistencies, interbasin flow is the only readily apparent explanation for the large spring discharges at Furnace Creek and, in our view, is the likely explanation for most large volume, low elevation springs in the Great Basin. An understanding of hydrogeologic processes that control the rate and direction of ground-water flow in eastern and central Nevada is necessary component of regional water-resource planning and management of alluvial and bedrock aquifers.

  11. Searching for Life in Death Valley (and Other Deserts) - Microchemical Investigations on Desert Varnish

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andreae, M. O.; Al-Amri, A. M.; Jochum, K. P.; Kappl, M.; Kilcoyne, A. D.; Macholdt, D.; Müller, M.; Pöhlker, C.; Weber, B.; Weigand, M.

    2014-12-01

    Desert varnishes are thin, shiny, blackish to brown coatings frequently found on the surfaces of exposed rocks in deserts around the globe. They have been proposed as terrestrial analogues of superficial hematite enrichments observed on Mars. While the first scientific studies of such varnishes go back to Darwin and von Humboldt, and intensive studies by a variety of techniques have been conducted over the last few decades, their origin is still a matter of debate. Microscopic and molecular studies have shown the presence of fungi and bacteria, but it is still unclear whether they are involved in the formation of the varnish material or just opportunistic colonizers on available surfaces. We have analysed samples of desert varnish from sites in Death Valley, the Mojave Desert, the Negev of Israel, Central Saudi Arabia, and the Succulent Karoo by a variety of microanalytical techniques. Measurements by UV-femtosecond Laser Ablation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry show enrichments of manganese, iron, barium and other elements. Isotopic and trace chemical signatures show that these enriched elements cannot originate from the rocks that form the substrate on which the crusts have been deposited, but most likely are the result of (bio?)chemical transformation of windblown material. For a more detailed investigation of the internal structure of the crusts, we prepared ultra-thin sections (~100 nm) using focused ion beam slicing and analysed them by Scanning Transmission X-ray Microscopy with Near-Edge X-ray Absorption Fine Structure spectroscopy (STXM-NEXAFS). This technique revealed layered or chaotic structures consisting of alternating Mn and Fe-rich zones. Some of these layers are enriched in organic carbon with spectral features dominated by aromatic and carboxylate functionalities, indicating a biological origin of some of the crust material. Some crusts also show cavities that are lined with similar organic material. Since the age of these crusts is of the order of 100-10,000 of years, this organic matter must represent fossil evidence that has survived intensive solar radiation, extreme temperatures, and chemical weathering over long periods of time within microns from the varnish surface.

  12. 76 FR 18581 - Correction; Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Standard Criteria for Agricultural and Urban...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-04-04

    ... at 76 FR 16818 on the Central Valley Project Improvement Act Standard Criteria for Agricultural and.../2011_standard_criteria.pdf . FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Melissa Crandell, Bureau...

  13. RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN ENVIRONMENTAL VARIABLES AND BENTHIC DIATOM ASSEMBLAGES IN CALIFORNIA CENTRAL VALLEY STREAMS (USA)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Streams and rivers in the California Central Valley Ecoregion have been substantially modified by human activities. This study examines distributional patterns of benthic diatom assemblages in relation to environmental characteristics in streams and rivers of this region. Benthic...

  14. 75 FR 15453 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Westlands Water District Drainage Repayment Contract

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-03-29

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Westlands Water District Drainage Repayment Contract AGENCY: Bureau of Reclamation, Interior. ACTION: Notice of Proposed Repayment Contract. SUMMARY: The Bureau of Reclamation will be initiating negotiations with the Westlands Water District...

  15. ANALYSIS OF MACROINVERTEBRATE ASSEMBLAGES IN RELATION TO ENVIRONMENTAL GRADIENTS AMONG LOTIC HABITATS OF CALIFORNIA'S CENTRAL VALLEY

    EPA Science Inventory

    We analyzed relationships between environmental characteristics and macroinvertebrate assemblages in lotic habitats of California's Central Valley with community metric and multivariate statistical approaches. Using canonical ordination analyses, we contrasted results when asse...

  16. 75 FR 69698 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Criteria for Developing Refuge Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-11-15

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Criteria for Developing Refuge Water Management Plans AGENCY: Bureau of Reclamation, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. SUMMARY: The ``Criteria for Developing Refuge Water Management Plans'' (Refuge Criteria) are now available for...

  17. 78 FR 63491 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-10-24

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans AGENCY: Bureau of Reclamation, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. SUMMARY: The following Water Management Plans are... achievable by project contractors using best available cost-effective technology and best...

  18. 76 FR 12756 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-03-08

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans AGENCY: Bureau of Reclamation, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. SUMMARY: The following Water Management Plans are... project contractors using best available cost- effective technology and best management practices.''...

  19. 75 FR 38538 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-07-02

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans AGENCY: Bureau of Reclamation, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. SUMMARY: The following Water Management Plans are available for review: The Westside Irrigation District Maine Prairie Water District Solano...

  20. A Transformative Undergraduate Field Trip to the Grand Canyon and Death Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, J. A.

    2014-12-01

    Seeing the iconic Grand Canyon and Death Valley in person is a transformative experience for most geologists, including nine undergraduate geology students from upstate New York. The students were enrolled in a one-credit course designed around a nine-day spring-break field trip to Grand Canyon National Park (GCNP) and Death Valley National Park (DVNP). We met once a week before the trip to plan day-to-day activities and discuss background geologic information. Students selected a research topic related to our itinerary and wrote a guidebook entry for the topic. Students' entries were combined with papers, maps, and background material to make a guidebook. The printed guidebooks provided students with a "publication" of their work to show to others and refer to in the field. The nine-day field trip started with a flight into Las Vegas, NV, on 3/1/14. We spent three nights camping at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, one night camping in Valley of Fire State Park (VOFSP, 55 mi N of Las Vegas), and three nights staying at the Shoshone Education and Research Center (SHEAR) east of Death Valley. Highlights of the trip included the hike along the Bright Angel Trail (and fault) to Plateau Point and recognition of the Great Unconformity at GCNP; the White Domes loop hike, camping at the Beehives, and observation of the Muddy Mountain Overthrust in VOFSP; and hikes at Ubehebe Crater, Badwater Salt Flat, and Natural Bridge Canyon in DVNP. Each student presented his/her research topic at a pertinent point in the field trip; students were impressively well-prepared. One requirement of the course was a poster presentation on each student's research topic at our Undergraduate Research Symposium in April. For most of the students, the poster session was the first experience preparing and presenting a poster. In addition, the class gave a joint colloquium presentation to several hundred science majors and a number of science faculty at Saint Rose. Each student spoke for five minutes on his/her research topic, accompanied by slides. This was their first experience giving a talk in public, and most learned the lesson that preparation and practice are keys to a good talk. Course evaluations were overwhelmingly positive. In my experience, there is no substitute for seeing geology in the field; the students agreed.

  1. Effect of faulting on ground-water movement in the Death Valley region, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    Faunt, C.C.

    1997-12-31

    This study characterizes the hydrogeologic system of the Death Valley region, an area covering approximately 100,000 square kilometers. The study also characterizes the effects of faults on ground-water movement in the Death Valley region by synthesizing crustal stress, fracture mechanics,a nd structural geologic data. The geologic conditions are typical of the Basin and Range Province; a variety of sedimentary and igneous intrusive and extrusive rocks have been subjected to both compressional and extensional deformation. Faulting and associated fracturing is pervasive and greatly affects ground-water flow patterns. Faults may become preferred conduits or barriers to flow depending on whether they are in relative tension, compression, or shear and other factors such as the degree of dislocations of geologic units caused by faulting, the rock types involved, the fault zone materials, and the depth below the surface. The current crustal stress field was combined with fault orientations to predict potential effects of faults on the regional ground-water flow regime. Numerous examples of fault-controlled ground-water flow exist within the study area. Hydrologic data provided an independent method for checking some of the assumptions concerning preferential flow paths. 97 refs., 20 figs., 5 tabs.

  2. Textural and mineralogical biosignatures in an unusual microbialite from Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douglas, Susanne; Abbey, William; Mielke, Randall; Conrad, Pamela; Kanik, Isik

    2008-02-01

    For in situ astrobiological studies of Mars or other planets, we must employ strategies that will enable us to verify whether our approach and prototype instruments are actually capable of distinguishing life from non-life. This must be done against a background of rigorously conducted scientific characterization of the environment or sample types being considered for measurement by the instruments under development. In this study we show how a combination of mineralogical and textural features can be considered a biosignature in an early Mars analogue environment, Death Valley, California. We propose that it is a combination of features in context of the geologic matrix which allows determination of biogenicity to be made. Polymineralic microbialites (organosedimentary formations constructed by microorganisms) from a spring pool at Badwater, within Death Valley National Park, are composed of alternating biogenic and abiogenic minerals in a distinct triplet sequence related to wet and dry seasons. A microbial community, occurring as a black biofilm, produced paired layers of two different mineral types: manganese oxyhydroxides and calcite. These biogenic layers are separated from the next pair by a gypsum layer and appear to be laid down in the wet season, with the gypsum (a mineral positively identified on Mars) precipitating in the dry part of the year, abiogenically (i.e., not dependent on microbial metabolic activity for its deposition). In addition, textural features (smaller grain size and less geometric morphology) unique to the biogenic vs the abiogenic layers, were consistently observed so that texture served as a biosignature in this environment.

  3. Holocene fluvial geomorphic change in the central Mississippi Valley

    SciTech Connect

    Hajic, E.R. )

    1992-01-01

    Four distinct Mississippi River (MR) channel patterns are distinguished on the basis of geomorphic expression and cross-cutting relationships between the Missouri River mouth and Thebes Gap (TG). In order of decreasing age, they are (1) a multi-channeled braided system superimposed on a sandy substrate that correlates with the Kingston Terrace (KT); (2) a relatively large amplitude, large sinuosity, meandering system; (3) a smaller amplitude, smaller sinuosity, meandering system with a marked increase in associated overbank sheetwash and splays; and, (4) an island-braided pattern aligned with the modern (MR). After the (KT) formed, the (MR) had a net westward migration and episodically decreased in sinuosity. Decreasing sinuosity is possibly in response to a general decrease in sediment yield. Channel pattern changes are bracketed somewhat by available radiocarbon ages and the geomorphic location of archaeological deposit with temporally diagnostic artifacts. The KT formed between about 10,400 and 9800 B.P.; the superimposed braid pattern has fill consisting of Lake Superior source reddish brown clay deposited by large, and possibly catastrophic, floods between 9800 and 9500 B.P. The large sinuosity meandering pattern was active from before 4400 B.P. until about 2400 B.P. at the latest. It was probably initiated millennia earlier. The small sinuosity meandering pattern was initiated by about 2500 B.P. and abandoned before 1100 B.P. The geomorphic mapping is the first component of a geoarchaeological investigation to aid cultural resource management to aid cultural resource management in the central MR Valley. At the same time, it provides some constraints on the origin and age of some long-recognized landforms, such as the TG.

  4. A Larger Volcanic Field About Yucca Mountain: New Geochemical Data From the Death Valley Volcanic Field, Inyo County California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tibbetts, A. K.; Smith, E. I.

    2008-12-01

    Volcanism is an important issue for the characterization of the proposed high-level nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Due to recent legal decisions that now require DOE to evaluate hazards over both 10,000 year and 1,000,000 year compliance periods, the definition of the area of interest for calculation of disruption probability and a knowledge of the volcanic process have become more important. New geochemical data for the Death Valley volcanic field in the Greenwater Range in Inyo County, California indicate that the Death Valley field and the volcanoes about Yucca Mountain are parts of the same volcanic field. The Death Valley field is just 35 km south of Yucca Mountain and only 20 km south of buried volcanoes in the Amargosa Valley. Trace elements for both areas show a negative Nb anomaly, but differ in that Death Valley basalt has lower La (70 vs. 130 ppm). Isotopic ratios are remarkably similar and strongly support a link between the Death Valley and Yucca Mountain areas. The isotope ranges for Death Valley are -11.88 to -3.26, 0.706322 to 0.707600, 17.725 to 18.509, 15.512 to 15.587, and 38.237 to 38.854 for epsilon Nd, 87Sr/86Sr, 206Pb/204Pb, 207Pb/204Pb, and 208Pb/204Pb respectively. Crater Flat isotope ranges are -13.17 to -5.48, 0.706221 to 0.707851, 18.066 to 18.706, 15.488 to 15.564, and 38.143 to 38.709 for epsilon Nd, 87Sr/86Sr, 206Pb/204Pb, 207Pb/204Pb, and 208Pb/204Pb respectively. Depth of melting calculated using the Fe-Na geobarometer indicates that basalt magma was generated at depths of 135-138 km beneath Death Valley and 115-133 km for Crater Flat indicating asthenospheric melting for both areas. Combining the Death Valley and Yucca Mountain areas into a single volcanic field increases the area of interest for probability calculations by over 1/3 and increases the number of volcanic events by 23. The increased size of the volcanic field and number of volcanoes may result in an increase in the probability of disruption of the repository by an igneous event by as much as two orders of magnitude.

  5. Traditional punishment and unexpected death in Central Australia.

    PubMed

    Byard, R W; Gilbert, J D; James, R A

    2001-03-01

    Three cases of traditional punishment in Central Australian Aboriginal men are presented in which the thighs were speared or stabbed as part of a "payback" system. In two cases, an unexpected effect of the stabbing or spearing was death due to severing of major leg vessels. The relationship between customary Aboriginal law and general law in Australia has not been clearly defined; however, these cases demonstrate that significant and untoward effects may result from traditional punishments. Pathologists working near traditional Australian Aboriginal communities may still encounter such injuries at autopsy. PMID:11444672

  6. Macropolygon morphology, development, and classification on North Panamint and Eureka playas, Death Valley National Park CA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Messina, Paula; Stoffer, Phil; Smith, Ward C.

    2005-12-01

    Panamint and Eureka playas, both located within Death Valley National Park, exhibit a host of surficial features including fissures, pits, mounds, and plant-covered ridges, representing topographic highs and lows that vary up to 2 m of relief from the playa surface. Aerial photographs reveal that these linear strands often converge to form polygons, ranging in length from several meters to nearly a kilometer. These features stand out in generally dark contrast to the brighter intervening expanse of flat, plant-free, desiccated mud of the typical playa surface. Ground-truth mapping of playa features with differential GPS (Global Positioning System) was conducted in 1999 (North Panamint Valley) and 2002 (Eureka Valley). High-resolution digital maps reveal that both playas possess macropolygons of similar scale and geometry, and that fissures may be categorized into one of two genetic groups: (1) shore-parallel or playa-interior desiccation and shrinkage; and (2) tectonic-induced cracks. Early investigations of these features in Eureka Valley concluded that their origin may have been related to agricultural activity by paleo-Indian communities. Although human artifacts are abundant at each locale, there is no evidence to support the inference that surface features reported on Eureka Playa are anthropogenic in origin. Our assumptions into the genesis of polygons on playas is based on our fortuitous experience of witnessing a fissure in the process of formation on Panamint Playa after a flash flood (May 1999); our observations revealed a paradox that saturation of the upper playa crusts contributes to the establishment of some desiccation features. Follow-up visits to the same feature over 2 yrs' time are a foundation for insight into the evolution and possible longevity of these features.

  7. Macropolygon morphology, development, and classification on North Panamint and Eureka playas, Death Valley National Park CA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Messina, P.; Stoffer, P.; Smith, W.C.

    2005-01-01

    Panamint and Eureka playas, both located within Death Valley National Park, exhibit a host of surficial features including fissures, pits, mounds, and plant-covered ridges, representing topographic highs and lows that vary up to 2 m of relief from the playa surface. Aerial photographs reveal that these linear strands often converge to form polygons, ranging in length from several meters to nearly a kilometer. These features stand out in generally dark contrast to the brighter intervening expanse of flat, plant-free, desiccated mud of the typical playa surface. Ground-truth mapping of playa features with differential GPS (Global Positioning System) was conducted in 1999 (North Panamint Valley) and 2002 (Eureka Valley). High-resolution digital maps reveal that both playas possess macropolygons of similar scale and geometry, and that fissures may be categorized into one of two genetic groups: (1) shore-parallel or playa-interior desiccation and shrinkage; and (2) tectonic-induced cracks. Early investigations of these features in Eureka Valley concluded that their origin may have been related to agricultural activity by paleo-Indian communities. Although human artifacts are abundant at each locale, there is no evidence to support the inference that surface features reported on Eureka Playa are anthropogenic in origin. Our assumptions into the genesis of polygons on playas is based on our fortuitous experience of witnessing a fissure in the process of formation on Panamint Playa after a flash flood (May 1999); our observations revealed a paradox that saturation of the upper playa crusts contributes to the establishment of some desiccation features. Follow-up visits to the same feature over 2 yrs' time are a foundation for insight into the evolution and possible longevity of these features. ?? 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Map showing depth to pre-Cenozoic basement in the Death Valley ground-water model area, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    Blakely, R.J.; Ponce, D.A.

    2002-03-12

    This map shows the depth to pre-Cenozoic basement in the Death Valley ground-water model area. It was prepared utilizing gravity (Ponce and others, 2001), geologic (Jennings and others, 1977; Stewart and Carlson, 1978), and drill-hole information. Geophysical investigations of the Death Valley ground-water model area are part of an interagency effort by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Department of Energy (Interagency Agreement DE-AI08-96NV11967) to help characterize the geology and hydrology of southwestern Nevada and parts of California. The Death Valley ground-water model is located between lat 35 degrees 00' and 38 degrees 15' N., and long 115 degrees and 118 degrees W.

  9. Fault pattern at the northern end of the Death Valley - Furnace Creek fault zone, California and Nevada

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liggett, M. A. (Principal Investigator); Childs, J. F.

    1974-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. The pattern of faulting associated with the termination of the Death Valley-Furnace Creek Fault Zone in northern Fish Lake Valley, Nevada was studied in ERTS-1 MSS color composite imagery and color IR U-2 photography. Imagery analysis was supported by field reconnaissance and low altitude aerial photography. The northwest-trending right-lateral Death Valley-Furnace Creek Fault Zone changes northward to a complex pattern of discontinuous dip slip and strike slip faults. This fault pattern terminates to the north against an east-northeast trending zone herein called the Montgomery Fault Zone. No evidence for continuation of the Death Valley-Furnace Creek Fault Zone is recognized north of the Montgomery Fault Zone. Penecontemporaneous displacement in the Death Valley-Furnace Creek Fault Zone, the complex transitional zone, and the Montgomery Fault Zone suggests that the systems are genetically related. Mercury mineralization appears to have been localized along faults recognizable in ERTS-1 imagery within the transitional zone and the Montgomery Fault Zone.

  10. Kinematics at the Intersection of the Garlock and Death Valley Fault Zones, California: Integration of TM Data and Field Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Verosub, Kenneth L.; Brady, Roland H., III; Abrams, Michael

    1989-01-01

    Kinematic relationships at the intersection of the southern Death Valley and Garlock fault zones were examined to identify and delineate the eastern structural boundary between the Mojave and the Basin and Range geologic terrains, and to construct a model for the evolution of this boundary through time. In order to accomplish this, satellite imagery was combined with field investigations to study six areas in the vicinity of the intersection, or possible extensions, of the fault zones. The information gathered from these areas allows the test of various hypotheses that were proposed to explain the interaction between the Death Valley and Garlock fault zones.

  11. Cenozoic tectonic reorganizations of the Death Valley region, southeast California and southwest Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fridrich, Christopher J.; Thompson, Ren A.

    2011-01-01

    The Death Valley region, of southeast California and southwest Nevada, is distinct relative to adjacent regions in its structural style and resulting topography, as well as in the timing of basin-range extension. Cenozoic basin-fill strata, ranging in age from greater than or equal to 40 to approximately 2 million years are common within mountain-range uplifts in this region. The tectonic fragmentation and local uplift of these abandoned basin-fills indicate a multistage history of basin-range tectonism. Additionally, the oldest of these strata record an earlier, pre-basin-range interval of weak extension that formed broad shallow basins that trapped sediments, without forming basin-range topography. The Cenozoic basin-fill strata record distinct stratigraphic breaks that regionally cluster into tight age ranges, constrained by well-dated interbedded volcanic units. Many of these stratigraphic breaks are long recognized formation boundaries. Most are angular unconformities that coincide with abrupt changes in depositional environment. Deposits that bound these unconformities indicate they are weakly diachronous; they span about 1 to 2 million years and generally decrease in age to the west within individual basins and regionally, across basin boundaries. Across these unconformities, major changes are found in the distribution and provenance of basin-fill strata, and in patterns of internal facies. These features indicate rapid, regionally coordinated changes in strain patterns defined by major active basin-bounding faults, coincident with step-wise migrations of the belt of active basin-range tectonism. The regionally correlative unconformities thus record short intervals of radical tectonic change, here termed "tectonic reorganizations." The intervening, longer (about 3- to 5-million-year) interval of gradual, monotonic evolution in the locus and style of tectonism are called "tectonic stages." The belt of active tectonism in the Death Valley region has abruptly stepped westward during three successive tectonic reorganizations that intervened between four stages of basin-range tectonism, the youngest of which is ongoing. These three tectonic reorganizations also intervened between four stages of volcanic activity, each of which has been distinct in the compositions of magmas erupted, in eruption rates, and in the locus of volcanic activity—which has stepped progressively westward, in close coordination with the step-wise migrations in the locus of basin-range extension. The timing of the Cenozoic tectonic reorganizations in the Death Valley region correlates closely with the documented timing of episodic reorganizations of the boundary between the Pacific and North American plates, to the west and southwest. This supports models that explain the widely distributed transtensional tectonism in southwestern North America since approximately 40 million years ago as resulting from traction imposed by the adjacent, divergent Pacific plate.

  12. Beryllium-10 terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide surface exposure dating of Quaternary landforms in Death Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Owen, Lewis A.; Frankel, Kurt L.; Knott, Jeffrey R.; Reynhout, Scott; Finkel, Robert C.; Dolan, James F.; Lee, Jeffrey

    2011-02-01

    Quaternary alluvial fans, and shorelines, spits and beach bars were dated using 10Be terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide (TCN) surface exposure methods in Death Valley. The 10Be TCN ages show considerable variance on individual surfaces. Samples collected in the active channels date from ~ 6 ka to ~ 93 ka, showing that there is significant 10Be TCN inheritance within cobbles and boulders. This suggests that the predominantly bedrock hillslopes erode very slowly and sediment is transferred very gradually in most regions within Death Valley. Comparisons of 10Be TCN ages on alluvial fan surfaces with chronostratigraphies based on soil development and optically stimulated luminescence dating show that minimum 10Be TCN ages within sample sets on individual surfaces most closely approximate to the age of landforms that are younger than ~ 70 ka. Alluvial fan surfaces older than ~ 70 ka have begun to undergo sufficient erosion such that the majority of 10Be TCN ages for datasets on individual surfaces probably underestimate the true age of the surface due to erosion and exhumation of fresh cobbles and boulders. The spread of 10Be TCN ages for beach bars near Beatty Junction and shorelines ~ 8 km south of Furnace Creek is large, ranging from ~ 119 ka to ~ 385 ka and ~ 109 ka to ~ 465 ka, respectively. New and previously published luminescence ages and soil development suggest that these landforms may have formed during marine isotope stage (MIS) 2 (~ 22-18 ka), but these younger ages may reflect elluviation of material into the bar deposit long after deposition, and hence the younger ages do not record the true antiquity of the landforms. This disparity between dates determined by different dating methods and the large spread of TCN ages suggests that the cobbles and boulders have considerable inherited 10Be concentrations, suggesting that the clasts have been derived from older shorelines or associated landforms. These results highlight the problems associated with using surface cobbles and boulders to date Quaternary surfaces in Death Valley and emphasizes the need to combine multiple, different dating methods to accurately date landforms in similar dryland regions elsewhere in the world. However, these results highlight the potential to use TCN methods, when used in combination with other dating techniques, to examine and quantify processes such as sediment transfer and denudation in drylands.

  13. Land use investigations in the central valley and central coastal test sites, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Estes, J. E.

    1973-01-01

    The Geography Remote Sensing Unit (GRSU) at the University of California, Santa Barbara is responsible for investigations with ERTS-1 data in the Central Coastal Zone and West Side of the San Joaquin Valley. The nature of investigative effort involves the inventory, monitoring, and assessment of the natural and cultural resources of the two areas. Land use, agriculture, vegetation, landforms, geology, and hydrology are the principal subjects for attention. These parameters are the key indicators of the dynamically changing character of the areas. Monitoring of these parameters with ERTS-1 data will provide the techniques and methodologies required to generate the information needed by federal, state, county, and local agencies to assess change-related phenomena and plan for management and development.

  14. Interpretive geologic cross sections for the Death Valley regional flow system and surrounding areas, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sweetkind, D.S.; Dickerson, R.P.; Blakely, R.J.; Denning, P.D.

    2001-01-01

    This report presents a network of 28 geologic cross sections that portray subsurface geologic relations within the Death Valley regional ground-water system, a ground-water basin that encompasses a 3? x 3? area (approximately 70,000 km2) in southern Nevada and eastern California. The cross sections transect that part of the southern Great Basin that includes Death Valley, the Nevada Test Site, and the potential high-level nuclear waste underground repository at Yucca Mountain. The specific geometric relationships portrayed on the cross sections are discussed in the context of four general sub-regions that have stratigraphic similarities and general consistency of structural style: (1) the Nevada Test Site vicinity; (2) the Spring Mountains, Pahrump Valley and Amargosa Desert region; (3) the Death Valley region; and (4) the area east of the Nevada Test Site. The subsurface geologic interpretations portrayed on the cross sections are based on an integration of existing geologic maps, measured stratigraphic sections, published cross sections, well data, and geophysical data and interpretations. The estimated top of pre-Cenozoic rocks in the cross sections is based on inversion of gravity data, but the deeper parts of the sections are based on geologic conceptual models and are more speculative. The region transected by the cross sections includes part of the southern Basin and Range Province, the northwest-trending Walker Lane belt, the Death Valley region, and the northern Mojave Desert. The region is structurally complex, where a locally thick Tertiary volcanic and sedimentary section unconformably overlies previously deformed Proterozoic through Paleozoic rocks. All of these rocks have been deformed by complex Neogene ex-tensional normal and strike-slip faults. These cross sections form a three-dimensional network that portrays the interpreted stratigraphic and structural relations in the region; the sections form part of the geologic framework that will be incorporated in a complex numerical model of ground-water flow in the Death Valley region.

  15. GEOLOGY AND ORIGIN OF THE DEATH VALLEY URANIUM DEPOSIT, SEWARD PENINSULA, ALASKA.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dickinson, Kendell A.; Cunningham, Kenneth D.; Ager, Thomas A.

    1987-01-01

    A uranium deposit discovered in 1977 in western Alaska, by means of airborne radiometric data, is the largest known in Alaska on the basis of industry reserve estimates. The deposit is apparently of epigenetic and supergene origin. The uranium was derived from the Cretaceous granite of the Darby pluton that forms part of the western side of Death Valley. Uranium from primary mineralization is in the subsurface in a marginal facies of the Tertiary sedimentary basin where nearshore coarse clastic rocks are interbedded with coal and lacustrine clay. The supergene enrichment is related to a soil horizon at the present ground surface. Extensive exploratory drilling took place from 1979 to 1981. The average grade of the potential ore is 0. 27 percent U//3O//8 and the average thickness is 3 m. The calculated reserves are 1,000,000 lbs U//3O//8; additional drilling would probably add to this figure. Additional study results are discussed.

  16. Estimated ground-water discharge by evapotranspiration from Death Valley, California, 1997-2001

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    DeMeo, Guy A.; Laczniak, Randell J.; Boyd, Robert A.; Smith, J. LaRue; Nylund, Walter E.

    2003-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the National Park Service and Inyo County, Calif., collected field data from 1997 through 2001 to accurately estimate the amount of annual ground-water discharge by evapotranspiration (ET) from the floor of Death Valley, California. Multispectral satellite-imagery and National Wetlands Inventory data are used to delineate evaporative ground-water discharge areas on the Death Valley floor. These areas are divided into five general units where ground-water discharge from ET is considered to be significant. Based upon similarities in soil type, soil moisture, vegetation type, and vegetation density; the ET units are salt-encrusted playa (21,287 acres), bare-soil playa (75,922 acres), low-density vegetation (6,625 acres), moderate-density vegetation (5,019 acres), and high-density vegetation (1,522 acres). Annual ET was computed for ET units with micrometeorological data which were continuously measured at six instrumented sites. Total ET was determined at sites that were chosen for their soil- and vegetated-surface conditions, which include salt-encrusted playa (extensive salt encrustation) 0.17 feet per year, bare-soil playa (silt and salt encrustation) 0.21 feet per year, pickleweed (pickleweed plants, low-density vegetation) 0.60 feet per year, Eagle Borax (arrowweed plants and salt grass, moderate-density vegetation) 1.99 feet per year, Mesquite Flat (mesquite trees, high-density vegetation) 2.86 feet per year, and Mesquite Flat mixed grasses (mixed meadow grasses, high-density vegetation) 3.90 feet per year. Precipitation, flooding, and ground-water discharge satisfy ET demand in Death Valley. Ground-water discharge is estimated by deducting local precipitation and flooding from cumulative ET estimates. Discharge rates from ET units were not estimated directly because the range of vegetation units far exceeded the five specific vegetation units that were measured. The rate of annual ground-water discharge by ET for each ET unit was determined by fitting the annual ground-water ET for each site with the variability in vegetation density in each ET unit. The ET rate representing the midpoint of each ET unit was used as the representative value. The rate of annual ground-water ET for the playa sites did not require scaling in this manner. Annual ground-water discharge by ET was determined for all five ET units: salt-encrusted playa (0.13 foot), bare-soil playa (0.15 foot), low-density vegetation (1.0 foot), moderate-density vegetation (2.0 feet), and high-density vegetation (3.0 feet), and an area of vegetation or bare soil not contributing to ground-water discharge unclassified (0.0 foot). The total ground-water discharge from ET for the Death Valley floor is about 35,000 acre-feet and was computed by summing the products of the area of each ET unit multiplied by a corresponding ET rate for each unit.

  17. SAR Imagery Applied to the Monitoring of Hyper-Saline Deposits: Death Valley Example (CA)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lasne, Yannick; Paillou, Philippe; Freeman, Anthony; Chapman, Bruce

    2009-01-01

    The present study aims at understanding the influence of salinity on the dielectric constant of soils and then on the backscattering coeff cients recorded by airborne/spaceborne SAR systems. Based on dielectric measurements performed over hyper-saline deposits in Death Valley (CA), as well as laboratory electromagnetic characterization of salts and water mixtures, we used the dielectric constants as input parameters of analytical IEM simulations to model both the amplitude and phase behaviors of SAR signal at C, and L-bands. Our analytical simulations allow to reproduce specif c copolar signatures recorded in SAR data, corresponding to the Cottonball Basin saltpan. We also propose the copolar backscattering ratio and phase difference as indicators of moistened and salt-affected soils. More precisely, we show that these copolar indicators should allow to monitor the seasonal variations of the dielectric properties of saline deposits.

  18. HELIOTHERMAL LAKE MODEL OF BORATE DEPOSITION IN THE MIOCENE FURNACE CREEK FORMATION, DEATH VALLEY REGION, CALIFORNIA.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barker, Charles E.; Barker, James M.

    1988-01-01

    Heliothermal lakes are density-stratified with shallow submerged margins surrounding areally restricted deep pool(s) containing a dense brine overlain by a much less dense brine. The reflective brine interface allows solar energy to be trapped in the dense brine which may warm to over 90 degree C. Carbonate precipitated from the dense brine is the typical sediment produced in warm deep pool. Miocene borate deposits of the Death Valley region are typically contained within areally limited carbonate-rich pods that interfinger with a finely interlaminated (varve-like) mudstone and limestone. Primary borates there are predominately either Na-Ca borates or Ca-borates. This bimodal evaporite assemblage suggests that brine chemistries and (or) crystallization paths varied significantly in temporally and spatially related portions of this apparently continuous lacustrine deposit.

  19. Characterizing the hydrogeologic framework of the Death Valley region, Southern Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Faunt, Claudia; D'Agnese, Frank; Downey, Joe S.; Turner, A. Keith

    1993-01-01

    Three-dimensional (3-D) hydrogeologic modeling of the complex geology of the Death Valley region requires the application of a number of Geoscientific Information System (GSIS) techniques. This study, funded by United States Department of Energy as a part of the Yucca Mountain Project, focuses on an area of approximately 100,000 square kilometers (three degrees of latitude by three degrees of longitude) and extends up to ten kilometers in depth. The geologic conditions are typical of the Basin and Range province; a variety of sedimentary and igneous intrusive and extrusive rocks have been subjected to both compressional and extensional deformation. GSIS techniques allow the synthesis of geologic, hydrologic and climatic information gathered from many sources, including satellite imagery and published maps and cross-sections. Construction of a 3-D hydrogeological model is possible with the combined use of software products available from several vendors, including traditional GIS products and sophisticated contouring, interpolation, visualization, and numerical modeling packages.

  20. High-angle origin of the currently low-angle Badwater Turtleback fault, Death Valley, California

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, M.G. )

    1991-04-01

    The late Cenozoic Badwater Turtleback fault separates an upper plate of volcanic and sedimentary rocks from a lower plate of predominantly mylonitic plutonic and metamorphic rocks. The Turtleback fault, however, is not a single continuous surface, but consists of a least three generations of faults. These faults occur as discrete, crosscutting segments that progressively decrease in age and increase in dip to the west. Therefore, they probably began at moderate to steep angles but rotated to lower angles with extensional strain. If so, lower plate mylonitic rocks also restore to steeper dips and suggest that transport of the upper plate occurred on moderate to steeply dipping surfaces in the middle and upper crust. The crosscutting nature of the fault segments and their initial moderate to steep dips, plus a possible offset marker on one of the segments, are most consistent with moderate amounts of extension in the Death Valley region.

  1. Death Valley regional groundwater flow model calibration using optimal parameter estimation methods and geoscientific information systems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    D'Agnese, F. A.; Faunt, C.C.; Hill, M.C.; Turner, A.K.

    1996-01-01

    A three-layer Death Valley regional groundwater flow model was constructed to evaluate potential regional groundwater flow paths in the vicinity of Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Geoscientific information systems were used to characterize the complex surface and subsurface hydrogeological conditions of the area, and this characterization was used to construct likely conceptual models of the flow system. The high contrasts and abrupt contacts of the different hydrogeological units in the subsurface make zonation the logical choice for representing the hydraulic conductivity distribution. Hydraulic head and spring flow data were used to test different conceptual models by using nonlinear regression to determine parameter values that currently provide the best match between the measured and simulated heads and flows.

  2. Tectonic map of the Death Valley ground-water model area, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    J.B. Workman; C.M. Menges; W.R. Page; E.B. Ekren; P.D. Rowley; G.L. Dixon

    2002-10-17

    The purpose of this map is to provide tectonic interpretations in the Death Valley ground-water model area to be incorporated into a transient ground-water flow model by the U.S. Geological Survey (D'Agnese, 2000; D'Agnese and Faunt, 1999; Faunt and others, 1999; and O'Brien and others, 1999). This work has been conducted in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Energy in order to assess regional ground-water flow near the Nevada Test Site (NTS) and the potential radioactive waste repository at Yucca Mountain. The map is centered on the NTS and its perimeter encircles the entire boundary of the numerical flow model area, covering a total area of 57,000 square kilometers. This tectonic map is a derivative map of the geologic map of the Death Valley ground-water model, Nevada and California (Workman and others, 2002). Structures portrayed on the tectonic map were selected from the geologic map based upon several criteria including amount of offset on faults, regional significance of structures, fault juxtaposition of rocks with significantly different hydrologic properties, and the hydrologic properties of the structures themselves. Inferred buried structures in the basins were included on the map (blue and light blue dotted lines) based on interpretation of geophysical data (Ponce and others, 2001; Ponce and Blakely, 2001; Blakely and Ponce, 2001). In addition, various regional trends of fault zones have been delineated which are composed of multiple smaller scale features. In some cases, these structures are deeply buried and their location is based primarily on geophysical evidence. In all cases, these zones (shown as broad red and blue stippled bands on the map) are significant structures in the region. Finally, surface exposures of Precambrian crystalline rocks and igneous intrusions of various ages are highlighted (red and blue patterns) on the map; these rocks generally act as barriers to groundwater flow unless significantly fractured.

  3. Guidelines for model calibration and application to flow simulation in the Death Valley regional groundwater system

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hill, M.C.; D'Agnese, F. A.; Faunt, C.C.

    2000-01-01

    Fourteen guidelines are described which are intended to produce calibrated groundwater models likely to represent the associated real systems more accurately than typically used methods. The 14 guidelines are discussed in the context of the calibration of a regional groundwater flow model of the Death Valley region in the southwestern United States. This groundwater flow system contains two sites of national significance from which the subsurface transport of contaminants could be or is of concern: Yucca Mountain, which is the potential site of the United States high-level nuclear-waste disposal; and the Nevada Test Site, which contains a number of underground nuclear-testing locations. This application of the guidelines demonstrates how they may be used for model calibration and evaluation, and also to direct further model development and data collection.Fourteen guidelines are described which are intended to produce calibrated groundwater models likely to represent the associated real systems more accurately than typically used methods. The 14 guidelines are discussed in the context of the calibration of a regional groundwater flow model of the Death Valley region in the southwestern United States. This groundwater flow system contains two sites of national significance from which the subsurface transport of contaminants could be or is of concern: Yucca Mountain, which is the potential site of the United States high-level nuclear-waste disposal; and the Nevada Test Site, which contains a number of underground nuclear-testing locations. This application of the guidelines demonstrates how they may be used for model calibration and evaluation, and also to direct further model development and data collection.

  4. BAGC.m: Three dimensional gravity modeling software with an application in Southern Death Valley, CA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eslick, Brian Eugene

    Basin Anomaly Gravity Calculator (BAGC.m) is a 3D interactive gravity modeling package designed to create, edit, and calculate the gravitational attraction of basin models entirely within the MATLAB(TM) environment. Gravity anomalies are calculated using the Rectangular Prism Method (Bott, 1960; Kane, 1962; and Plouff, 1966) which subdivides earth models into regularly spaced rectangular prisms. This approach requires large 3D matrices to store most realistic earth models. The process of model editing is simplified by storing basins as 2D gridded files which define the depth to the boundary between basement rock and sedimentary fill for each model cell. In order to minimize computation time, BAGC.m calculates and stores the gravitational attraction of each cell so that when the model is edited only those cells that change need to be recalculated. The performance of BAGC.m was tested by comparing the gravity anomaly produced by a modeled sphere of radius 4.5 km at a depth of 4.5 km with its analytical solution. The tests indicate that BAGC.m reproduces the analytical solution with an error of 0.6% for a sample spacing of 60 m which corresponds to 7.07x10-6% of the volume of the sphere. BAGC.m was used to calculate the gravitational attraction of a regional basin depth model of Death Valley developed by Blakely and Ponce (2001). Results were compared to a new high precision gravity data set and indicate that the structures within the Southern Death Valley Fault Zone (SDVFZ) are more complex than predicted by the regional basin depth model. However, the program did calculate the contributions of the basin fill to the regional gravity field based on that depth model.

  5. Specialization of Bacillus in the Geochemically Challenged Environment of Death Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kopac, S.

    2014-04-01

    Death Valley is the hottest, driest place in North America, a desert with soils containing toxic elements such as boron and lead. While most organisms are unable to survive under these conditions, a diverse community of bacteria survives here. What has enabled bacteria to adapt and thrive in a plethora of extreme and stressful environments where other organisms are unable to grow? The unique environmental adaptations that distinguish ecologically distinct bacterial groups (ecotypes) remain a mystery, in contrast to many animal species (perhaps most notably Darwin's ecologically distinct finch species). We resolve the ecological factors associated with recently diverged ecotypes of the soil bacteria Bacillus subtilis and Bacillus licheniformis, isolated from the dry, geochemically challenging soils of Death Valley, CA. To investigate speciation associated with challenging environmental parameters, we sampled soil transects along a 400m stretch that parallels a decrease in salinity adjacent to a salt flat; transects also encompass gradients in soil B, Cu, Fe, NO3, and P, all of which were quantified in our soil samples. We demarcated strains using Ecotype Simulation, a sequence-based algorithm. Each ecotype's habitat associations were determined with respect to salinity, B, Cu, Fe, NO3, and P. In addition, our sample strains were tested for tolerance of copper, boron and salinity (all known to inhibit growth at high concentrations) by comparing their growth over a 20 hour period. Ecotypes differed in their habitat associations with salinity, boron, copper, iron, and other ecological factors; these environmental dimensions are likely causing speciation of B. subtilis-licheniformis ecotypes at our sample site. Strains also differed in tolerance of boron and copper, providing evidence that our sequence-based demarcations reflect real differences in metabolism. By better understanding the relationship between bacterial speciation and the environment, we can begin to predict the habitability of unexplored extreme and extra-Earth environments.

  6. 27 CFR 9.49 - Central Delaware Valley.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... Delaware Valley viticultural area are nine U.S.G.S. maps in the 7.5 minute series (topographic). They are... New Jersey near the Delaware River about one mile northwest of Titusville, at the southern end of the... County Route 579 (Bear Tavern Road) about .2 mile south of Ackors Corner. (iii) Then northward...

  7. 27 CFR 9.49 - Central Delaware Valley.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... Delaware Valley viticultural area are nine U.S.G.S. maps in the 7.5 minute series (topographic). They are... New Jersey near the Delaware River about one mile northwest of Titusville, at the southern end of the... County Route 579 (Bear Tavern Road) about .2 mile south of Ackors Corner. (iii) Then northward...

  8. 27 CFR 9.49 - Central Delaware Valley.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... Delaware Valley viticultural area are nine U.S.G.S. maps in the 7.5 minute series (topographic). They are... New Jersey near the Delaware River about one mile northwest of Titusville, at the southern end of the... County Route 579 (Bear Tavern Road) about .2 mile south of Ackors Corner. (iii) Then northward...

  9. 27 CFR 9.49 - Central Delaware Valley.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... Delaware Valley viticultural area are nine U.S.G.S. maps in the 7.5 minute series (topographic). They are... New Jersey near the Delaware River about one mile northwest of Titusville, at the southern end of the... County Route 579 (Bear Tavern Road) about .2 mile south of Ackors Corner. (iii) Then northward...

  10. 27 CFR 9.49 - Central Delaware Valley.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... Delaware Valley viticultural area are nine U.S.G.S. maps in the 7.5 minute series (topographic). They are... New Jersey near the Delaware River about one mile northwest of Titusville, at the southern end of the... County Route 579 (Bear Tavern Road) about .2 mile south of Ackors Corner. (iii) Then northward...

  11. Assessment of Computer-based Geologic Mapping of Rock Units in the LANDSAT-4 Scene of Northern Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Short, N. M.

    1984-01-01

    Results from a series of geologic classifications conducted on a thematic mapper subscene of the northern Death Valley, California are reported. Measurements of accuracy are made through comparison with the 1977 edition of the Death Valley geologic sheet. This employs a simplified map version which is registered by computer to the image data base, allowing a pixel by pixel match with the classified scene. The results show accuracy ranges from 36 to 79% depending on the type of classifier used and the statistical adjustments made to the data. Accuracy values in identifying geologic units were 2 to 3 times higher for those in the relatively flat valleys than for units in the rugged mountainous terrain. Improvements in accuracy will be sought by correcting for slope/aspect variations in mountainous terrain using topographic data recorded in Defense Mapping Agency (DMA) tapes. The above classification results will also be compared with ratio and principal component image classifications made from the same scene.

  12. Map showing depth to pre-Cenozoic basement in the Death Valley ground-water model area, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Blakely, R.J.; Ponce, D.A.

    2001-01-01

    A depth to basement map of the Death Valley groundwater model area was prepared using over 40,0000 gravity stations as part of an interagency effort by the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Department of Energy to help characterize the geology and hydrology of southwest Nevada and parts of California.

  13. Kinematics at the intersection of the Garlock and Death Valley fault zones, California: Integration of TM data and field studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abrams, Michael; Verosub, Ken; Finnerty, Tony; Brady, Roland

    1987-01-01

    The Garlock and Death Valley fault zones in SE California are two active strike-slip faults coming together on the east side of the Avawatz Mtns. The kinematics of this intersection, and the possible continuation of either fault zone, are being investigated using a combination of field mapping, and processing and interpretation of remotely sensed image data. Regional and local relationships are derivable from Thematic Mapper data (30 m resolution), including discrimination and relative age dating of alluvial fans, bedrock mapping, and fault mapping. Aircraft data provide higher spatial resolution over more limited areas. Hypotheses being considered are: (1) the Garlock fault extends east of the intersection; (2) the Garlock fault terminates at the intersection and the Death Valley fault continues southeastward; and (3) the Garlock fault has been offset right laterally by the Death Valley fault which continues to the southeast. Preliminary work indicates that the first hypothesis is invalid. From kinematic considerations, image analysis, and field work the third hypothesis is favored. The projected continuation of the Death Valley zone defines the boundary between the Mojave crustal block and the Basin and Range block.

  14. Paired, facing monoclines in the Sanpete-Sevier Valley area, central Utah

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Witkind, I.J.

    1992-01-01

    Several major monoclines that trend northward through the Sanpete-Sevier Valley area of central Utah are paired and face one another. This pairing of monoclines may have occurred when near-horizontal sedimentary and volcanic strata subsided into voids created as salt was removed from a salt diapir concealed beneath valley fill. Removal was mostly by dissolution or extrusion during Neogene time. The paired monoclines, thus, are viewed as collapse features rather than as normal synclinal folds. -from Author

  15. Hydrogeological characterization of Gold Valley: an investigation of precipitation recharge in an intermountain basin in the Death Valley region, California, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdulaziz, Abdulaziz M.; Hurtado, José M.; Faid, Abdalla

    2012-06-01

    Gold Valley is typical of intermountain basins in Death Valley National Park (DVNP), California (USA). Using water-balance calculations, a GIS-based analytical model has been developed to estimate precipitational infiltration rates from catchment-scale topographic data (elevation and slope). The calculations indicate that groundwater recharge mainly takes place at high elevations (>1,100 m) during winter (average 1.78 mm/yr). A resistivity survey suggests that groundwater accumulates in upstream compartmentalized reservoirs and that the groundwater flows through basin fill and fractured bedrock. This explains the relationship between the upstream precipitational infiltration in Gold Valley and the downstream spring flow in Willow Creek. To verify the ability of local recharge to support high-flux springs in DVNP, a GIS-based model was also applied to the Furnace Creek catchment. The results produced insufficient total volume of precipitational infiltration to support flow from the main high-flux springs in DVNP under current climatic conditions. This study introduces a GIS-based infiltration model that can be integrated into the Death Valley regional groundwater flow model to estimate precipitational infiltration recharge. In addition, the GIS-based model can efficiently estimate local precipitational infiltration in similar intermountain basins in arid regions provided that the validity of the model is verified.

  16. Reconstructing late Pliocene to middle Pleistocene Death Valley lakes and river systems as a test of pupfish (Cyprinodontidae) dispersal hypotheses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knott, J.R.; Machette, M.N.; Klinger, R.E.; Sarna-Wojcicki, A. M.; Liddicoat, J.C.; Tinsley, J. C., III; David, B.T.; Ebbs, V.M.

    2008-01-01

    During glacial (pluvial) climatic periods, Death Valley is hypothesized to have episodically been the terminus for the Amargosa, Owens, and Mojave Rivers. Geological and biological studies have tended to support this hypothesis and a hydrological link that included the Colorado River, allowing dispersal of pupfish throughout southeastern California and western Nevada. Recent mitochondrial deoxyribonucleic acid (mtDNA) studies show a common pupfish (Cyprinodontidae) ancestry in this region with divergence beginning 3-2 Ma. We present tephrochronologic and paleomagnetic data in the context of testing the paleohydrologic connections with respect to the common collection point of the Amargosa, Owens, and Mojave Rivers in Death during successive time periods: (1) the late Pliocene to early Pleistocene (3-2 Ma), (2) early to middle Pleistocene (1.2-0.5 Ma), and (3) middle to late Pleistocene (<0.70.03 Ma; paleolakes Manly and Mojave). Using the 3.35 Ma Zabriskie Wash tuff and 3.28 Ma Nomlaki Tuff Member of the Tuscan and Tehama Formations, which are prominent marker beds in the region, we conclude that at 3-2 Ma, a narrow lake occupied the ancient Furnace Creek Basin and that Death Valley was not hydrologically connected with the Amargosa or Mojave Rivers. A paucity of data for Panamint Valley does not allow us to evaluate an Owens River connection to Death Valley ca. 3-2 Ma. Studies by others have shown that Death Valley was not hydrologically linked to the Amargosa, Owens, or Mojave Rivers from 1.2 to 0.5 Ma. We found no evidence that Lake Manly flooded back up the Mojave River to pluvial Lake Mojave between 0.18 and 0.12 Ma, although surface water flowed from the Amargosa and Owens Rivers to Death Valley at this time. There is also no evidence for a connection of the Owens, Amargosa, or Mojave Rivers to the Colorado River in the last 3-2 m.y. Therefore, the hypothesis that pupfish dispersed or were isolated in basins throughout southeastern California and western Nevada by such a connection is not supported. Beyond the biologically predicted time frame, however, sparse and disputed data suggest that a fluvial system connected Panamint (Owens River), Death, and Amargosa Valleys, which could account for the dispersal and isolation before 3 Ma. ?? 2008 The Geological Society of America.

  17. Interbasin flow revisited: The contribution of local recharge to high-discharge springs, Death Valley, CA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Katherine; Nelson, Stephen; Mayo, Alan; Tingey, David

    2006-05-01

    Springs in the Furnace Creek area (Texas, Travertine, and Nevares Springs) of Death Valley National Park exhibit high discharge rates and depleted δ18O VSMOW (˜-13‰) and δD VSMOW (˜-102‰) values. Isotopic depletion of this magnitude and large spring fluxes (˜10,000 L/min) suggests that modern local recharge in the arid Furnace Creek drainage cannot be responsible for spring fluxes. An alternate explanation, interbasin flow, is difficult to envisage due to the stratigraphic and structural relationships of bedrock in intervening ranges, although it is the most common conceptual model for Furnace Creek spring flows. High-flux springs at Furnace Creek nonetheless respond modestly to modern climate in terms of discharge rate and isotopic composition. Hydrographs show a climate response and variations in time-series stable isotope data of widely spaced springs track one another. Small, but measurable quantities of tritium (<0.2 TU) were found at Nevares Spring, also suggesting a component of modern recharge. Thus, whatever the main source of water for these springs may be, there appears to be a subtle, but recent climatic influence. Estimates of flow at nearby mountain springs produce discharge rates per square kilometer of catchment that, by analogy, could support from 20 to 300% of the flow at large Death Valley springs under the current climate. Yet, 14C model ages suggest valley-bottom springs at Furnace Creek (5500-14,500 yr) contain a large component of older water, suggesting that much of the water was recharged during a pluvial period (Younger Dryas?) when net infiltration would have been much higher and isotopically depleted. 14C model ages are also of similar age, or younger, than many 'up gradient' waters, rather than being older as would be expected for interbasin flow. Chemical evolution models of solutes are consistent with both local recharge and interbasin transfer from Ash Meadows. However, when considered with isotopic constraints, interbasin flow becomes obviously untenable. Estimates of the thickness of alluvium and semi-consolidated Tertiary units in the Furnace Creek drainage seem to provide adequate storage, confinement, and upward leakage to accommodate current discharge. Thus, although Death Valley is the ultimate discharge location for regional groundwaters in terms of potential, careful study of these springs suggests that most of their flux is supported by local pluvial recharge, suggesting that a careful re-evaluation of the interbasin transfers be conducted on a case-by-case basis. Furthermore, regional flow models that are built on the concept of interbasin flow provide boundary flux conditions for site-scale models for the proposed nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Thus, site-scale models may over-predict the potential transport of waste from the Yucca Mountain facility.

  18. Alluvial fan facies in Death Valley: Contrasts with fluvial gravels and implications for the interpretation of ancient fan'' gravels

    SciTech Connect

    Middleton, G.V. . Dept. of Geology)

    1993-03-01

    Sedimentary environments in Death Valley belong to three major groups: fans, washes, and playas. Fans in Death Valley include both diamicts and bedded gravels. Seven facies may be recognized. The diamicts include: (1) matrix-rich, coarse wackestones; (2) thin, matrix-rich, fine wackestones, that may show grading; (3) matrix-poor, coarse packstones, transitional to wackestones. The bedded facies include: (4) weakly bedded, poorly sorted packstones or grainstones, that show patchy imbrication, and cut-and-fill structures; (5) packed, imbricated cobble lenses, generally interbedded in facies 4; (6) distinctly bedded gravels, that are better bedded, finer and better sorted, and show better imbrication than facies 4, but still do not show clear separation of sand and gravel beds; (7) backfill cross-bedded gravels. Sand beds are not seen in fan deposits. Sand is present in eolian deposits of the playa, as plane-laminated, back-eddy deposits in Death Valley Wash, and as laminated or rippled sand in the Amargosa River, which drains into the south end of Death Valley. The most remarkable features of the fan and wash deposits are the very weak segregation of sand and gravel, and the absence of any lower flow-regime structures produced by ripples or dunes. During floods, the slope of fan and wash surfaces is steep enough to produce upper regime flows. Most fans in Death Valley itself are not strongly dominated by debris flow deposits (diamicts). Within a fan, facies vary little from proximal to distal regions, but may differ strongly from facies seen in adjacent fans.

  19. Winter fog is decreasing in the fruit growing region of the Central Valley of California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baldocchi, Dennis; Waller, Eric

    2014-05-01

    The Central Valley of California is home to a variety of fruit and nut trees. These trees account for 95% of the U.S. production, but they need a sufficient amount of winter chill to achieve rest and quiescence for the next season's buds and flowers. In prior work, we reported that the accumulation of winter chill is declining in the Central Valley. We hypothesize that a reduction in winter fog is cooccurring and is contributing to the reduction in winter chill. We examined a 33 year record of satellite remote sensing to develop a fog climatology for the Central Valley. We find that the number of winter fog events, integrated spatially, decreased 46%, on average, over 32 winters, with much year to year variability. Less fog means warmer air and an increase in the energy balance on buds, which amplifies their warming, reducing their chill accumulation more.

  20. Ground-water discharge determined from estimates of evapotranspiration, Death Valley regional flow system, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Laczniak, Randell J.; Smith, J. LaRue; Elliott, Peggy E.; DeMeo, Guy A.; Chatigny, Melissa A.; Roemer, Gaius J.

    2001-01-01

    The Death Valley regional flow system (DVRFS) is one of the larger ground-water flow systems in the southwestern United States and includes much of southern Nevada and the Death Valley region of eastern California. Centrally located within the ground-water flow system is the Nevada Test Site (NTS). The NTS, a large tract covering about 1,375 square miles, historically has been used for testing nuclear devices and currently is being studied as a potential repository for the long-term storage of high-level nuclear waste generated in the United States. The U.S. Department of Energy, as mandated by Federal and State regulators, is evaluating the risk associated with contaminants that have been or may be introduced into the subsurface as a consequence of any past or future activities at the NTS. Because subsurface contaminants can be transported away from the NTS by ground water, components of the ground-water budget are of great interest. One such component is regional ground-water discharge. Most of the ground water leaving the DVRFS is limited to local areas where geologic and hydrologic conditions force ground water upward toward the surface to discharge at springs and seeps. Available estimates of ground-water discharge are based primarily on early work done as part of regional reconnaissance studies. These early efforts covered large, geologically complex areas and often applied substantially different techniques to estimate ground-water discharge. This report describes the results of a study that provides more consistent, accurate, and scientifically defensible measures of regional ground-water losses from each of the major discharge areas of the DVRFS. Estimates of ground-water discharge presented in this report are based on a rigorous quantification of local evapotranspiration (ET). The study identifies areas of ongoing ground-water ET, delineates different ET areas based on similarities in vegetation and soil-moisture conditions, and determines an ET rate for each delineated area. Each area, referred to as an ET unit, generally consists of one or more assemblages of local phreatophytes or a unique moist soil environment. Ten ET units are identified throughout the DVRFS based on differences in spectral-reflectance characteristics. Spectral differences are determined from satellite imagery acquired June 21, 1989, and June 13, 1992. The units identified include areas of open playa, moist bare soils, sparse to dense vegetation, and open water. ET rates estimated for each ET unit range from a few tenths of a foot per year for open playa to nearly 9 feet per year for open water. Mean annual ET estimates are computed for each discharge area by summing estimates of annual ET from each ET unit within a discharge area. The estimate of annual ET from each ET unit is computed as the product of an ET unit's acreage and estimated ET rate. Estimates of mean annual ET range from 450 acre-feet in the Franklin Well area to 30,000 acre-feet in Sarcobatus Flat. Ground-water discharge is estimated as annual ET minus that part of ET attributed to local precipitation. Mean annual ground-water discharge estimates range from 350 acre-feet in the Franklin Well area to 18,000 acre-feet in Ash Meadows. Generally, these estimates are greater for the northern discharge areas (Sarcobatus Flat and Oasis Valley) and less for the southern discharge areas (Franklin Lake, Shoshone area, and Tecopa/ California Valley area) than those previously reported.

  1. Interpretive geologic cross sections for the Death Valley regional flow system and surrounding areas, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    D.S. Sweetkind; R.P. Dickerson; R.J. Blakely; P.D. Denning

    2001-11-09

    This report presents a network of 28 geologic cross sections that portray subsurface geologic relations within the Death Valley regional ground-water system, a ground-water basin that encompasses a 3 degree x 3 degree area (approximately 70,000 square kilometers) in southern Nevada and eastern California. The cross sections transect that part of the southern Great Basin that includes Death Valley, the Nevada Test Site, and the potential high-level nuclear waste underground repository at Yucca Mountain. The specific geometric relationships portrayed on the cross sections are discussed in the context of four general sub-regions that have stratigraphic similarities and general consistency of structural style: (1) the Nevada Test Site vicinity; (2) the Spring Mountains, Pahrump Valley and Amargosa Desert region; (3) the Death Valley region; and (4) the area east of the Nevada Test Site. The subsurface geologic interpretations portrayed on the cross sections are based on an integration of existing geologic maps, measured stratigraphic sections, published cross sections, well data, and geophysical data and interpretations. The estimated top of pre-Cenozoic rocks in the cross sections is based on inversion of gravity data, but the deeper parts of the sections are based on geologic conceptual models and are more speculative.

  2. On the formation of the tunnel valleys of the Superior lobe, central Minnesota

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moores, Howard D.

    1989-07-01

    When considering the formation of tunnel valleys, most researchers have appealed to basal melting as the primary source of water. Erosion of the tunnel valleys can then be accomplished by steady-state drainage over a long period or by storage and subsequent catastrophic release. However, field relationships in a large system of tunnel valleys formed by the Superior lobe in central Minnesota indicate that another source of water must be considered. The Minnesota tunnel valleys are composed of individual segments 10-20 km long, and the segments commonly terminate in subaerial outwash fans at recessional ice margin positions. Eskers, associated with the tunnel valleys, are also composed of short segments, frequently beginning at moulin kames and terminating at the head of outwash fans. The dominant source of the water responsible for tunnel-valley formation was seasonal meltwater from the glacier surface that reached the bed through moulins and crevasses. The apparent continuity of the valleys resulted from the headward development of the englacial drainage system during ice retreat.

  3. Stable Ca, H and O Isotopes in the Modern Death Valley Hydrological System, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, W.; Depaolo, D.; Ingram, L.; Owens, T.

    2006-12-01

    We have characterized waters and sediment from Death Valley to investigate the fractionation of Ca isotopes and how it relates to evaporation effects and precipitation of Ca minerals in a natural system. The ultimate objective is to determine whether there can be substantial Ca isotope fractionation in the absence of significant biological activity, which would determine whether Ca isotopes could be useful as a biomarker on Mars. In this study, we collected water samples from the Death Valley region in May of 2006, and we have also data from a sediment core at Badwater. The δ18O and δ^{}D values of waters vary from -13.9 to +1.6 ‰ and from -109 to -21 ‰ respectively. The spring waters, discharged from the regional groundwater systems and collected at their sources, have low δ18O and δ^{}D values falling on the meteoric water line (MWL). Salt pan brines fall on the upper end of the local evaporation trend (Yang at al., 1997), indicating strong evaporation. The surface spring waters collected from small shallow ponds at the edges of the salt pans show significant variation from the MWL which are the result of evaporation and mixing with the concentrated salt pan brines. The δ44Ca values of the spring waters vary slightly from -0.39 to -0.25 ‰ regardless of their locations and types of water chemistry, which is close to the local bedrock values; whereas the δ44Ca values of the two concentrated Badwater salt pan brine samples are about +0.4 ‰. There is about 0.7 ‰ difference in δ44Ca between the evaporated brine-Ca (chloride-Ca) and the inflow source-Ca, which apparently results from the precipitation of calcium carbonate and sulfate during extreme evaporation. This effect is consistent with the precipitated Ca salts being enriched in the light Ca isotopes as is observed in laboratory precipitation experiments. Calcite and sulfate minerals from the 186-meter Badwater saline sediment core were also measured. The calcite is slightly lower in δ44Ca relative to the freshwater inflow, but shows no significant variation in the evaporation-dissolution-flooding cycles indicated by O and D isotopes, nor in glacial-interglacial climatic transitions (Yang et al., 2005). It is most likely that there is only about -0.3 ‰ differences in δ44Ca between the non-chloride minerals and their inflow sources; hence although there may be some inorganic isotopic fractionation, it does not appear to be as large as the ca. 1.3 permil fractionations found in laboratory experiments.

  4. Stress Accumulation and Interseismic Deformation of the Death Valley Fault Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Del Pardo, C.; Smith-Konter, B. R.; Serpa, L. F.

    2009-12-01

    The Death Valley Fault Zone (DVFZ), located in southeastern California, is an active fault system with an evolved pull-apart basin that has been deforming over the last 15 Myr. Our objectives are to study the interseismic motion and long-term stress accumulation of the DVFZ in order to better understand the nature of present-day loading conditions of the fault zone. Using a 3-D semi-analytic viscoelastic deformation model, constrained by geodetic velocities, we aim to establish best-fitting model parameters for interseismic slip rate, apparent locking depth, elastic plate thickness and mantle viscosity. We allow the model to accommodate variable locking depths (8-14 km) and slip rates (2-5 mm/yr) and tune the model to fit a set of local EarthScope continuous and campaign geodetic velocities. Our best fitting preliminary model, consisting of 200 fault elements, provides a good fit to the data (0.63 mm/yr fault-perpendicular RMS misfit and 1.00 mm/yr fault-parallel RMS misfit) and reveals an appropriate sensitivity to fault geometry. In particular, we obtain rates of 0.3-0.4 mm/yr of subsidence and 1.0-1.2 mm/yr of extension in the Death Valley pull-apart basin. We compare these modeled rates to geologic estimates of 15 Myr of basin evolution, a 3 km basin depth (including sediment fill), and a 15 km basin width, which yield geologic deformation rates of 0.2-0.3 mm/yr of subsidence and 0.3-1 mm/yr of extension. We also compute shear and normal stresses along the major fault strands and use these to compute present-day Coulomb stress accumulation rates for the primary DVFZ segments. Using a coefficient of friction of 0.6, we obtain stress accumulation rates of 0.4-0.6 MPa per century, in agreement with long-term estimates of earthquake recurrence intervals on the order of 1000 years, assuming typical stress drops of 4 MPa or higher for major DVFZ earthquakes. We are developing a stress and deformation time series model that reconstructs opening of the pull-apart basin based on present-day observations and the geologic history of the DVFZ region.

  5. Sliding rocks on Racetrack Playa, Death Valley National Park: first observation of rocks in motion.

    PubMed

    Norris, Richard D; Norris, James M; Lorenz, Ralph D; Ray, Jib; Jackson, Brian

    2014-01-01

    The engraved trails of rocks on the nearly flat, dry mud surface of Racetrack Playa, Death Valley National Park, have excited speculation about the movement mechanism since the 1940s. Rock movement has been variously attributed to high winds, liquid water, ice, or ice flotation, but has not been previously observed in action. We recorded the first direct scientific observation of rock movements using GPS-instrumented rocks and photography, in conjunction with a weather station and time-lapse cameras. The largest observed rock movement involved > 60 rocks on December 20, 2013 and some instrumented rocks moved up to 224 m between December 2013 and January 2014 in multiple move events. In contrast with previous hypotheses of powerful winds or thick ice floating rocks off the playa surface, the process of rock movement that we have observed occurs when the thin, 3 to 6 mm, "windowpane" ice sheet covering the playa pool begins to melt in late morning sun and breaks up under light winds of -4-5 m/s. Floating ice panels 10 s of meters in size push multiple rocks at low speeds of 2-5 m/min. along trajectories determined by the direction and velocity of the wind as well as that of the water flowing under the ice. PMID:25162535

  6. An ostracode based paleolimnologic and paleohydrologic history of Death Valley: 200 to 0 ka

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Forester, R.M.; Lowenstein, T.K.; Spencer, R.J.

    2005-01-01

    Death Valley, a complex tectonic and hydrologic basin, was cored from its lowest surface elevation to a depth of 186 m. The sediments range from bedded primary halite to black muds. Continental ostracodes found in the black muds indicate that those sediments were deposited in a variety of hydrologic settings ranging from deep, relatively fresh water to shallow saline lakes to spring discharge supported wetlands. The alkaline-enriched, calcium-depleted paleolake waters indicate extrabasinal streamflow and basin-margin spring discharge. The alkaline-depleted, calcium-enriched paleowetland waters indicate intrabasinal spring discharge. During Marine Isotope Stage 6 (MIS 6, ca. 180-140 ka) the hydrologic settings were highly variable, implying that complex relations existed between climate and basin hydrology. Termination II (MIS 6 to MIS 5E) was a complex multicyclic sequence of paleoenvironments, implying that climates oscillated between high and low effective moisture. MIS 4 (ca. 73-61 ka) was a spring discharge supported wetland complex. During MIS 2 (ca. 20-12 ka) the hydrologic settings were variable, although they are not fully understood because some black muds deposited during that time were lost during coring. ?? 2005 Geological Society of America.

  7. Height changes along selected lines through the Death Valley region, California and Nevada, 1905-1984

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Castle, Robert O.; Gilmore, Thomas D.; Walker, James P.; Castle, Susan A.

    2005-01-01

    Comparisons among repeated levelings along selected lines through the Death Valley region of California and adjacent parts of Nevada have disclosed surprisingly large vertical displacements. The vertical control data in this lightly populated area is sparse; moreover, as much as a third of the recovered data is so thoroughly contaminated by systematic error and survey blunders that no attempt was made to correct these data and they were simply discarded. In spite of these limitations, generally episodic, commonly large vertical displacements are disclosed along a number of lines. Displacements in excess of 0.4 m, with respect to our selected control point at Beatty, Nevada, and differential displacements of about 0.7 m apparently occurred during the earlier years of the 20th century and continued episodically through at least 1943. While this area contains abundant evidence of continuing tectonic activity through latest Quaternary time, it is virtually devoid of historic seismicity. We have detected no clear connection between the described vertical displacements and fault zones reportedly active during Holocene time, although we sense some association with several more broadly defined tectonic features.

  8. Potential hazards from floodflows in Grapevine Canyon, Death Valley National Monument, California and Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bowers, J.C.

    1990-01-01

    Grapevine Canyon is on the western slope of the Grapevine Mountains in the northern part of Death Valley National Monument , California and Nevada. Grapevine Canyon Road covers the entire width of the canyon floor in places and is a frequently traveled route to Scotty 's Castle in the canyon. The region is arid and subject to flash flooding because of infrequent but intense convective storms. When these storms occur, normally in the summer, the resulting floods may create a hazard to visitor safety and property. Historical data on rainfall and floodflow in Grapevine Canyon are sparse. Data from studies made for similar areas in the desert mountains of southern California provide the basis for estimating discharges and the corresponding frequency of floods in the study area. Results of this study indicate that high-velocity flows of water and debris , even at shallow depths, may scour and damage Grapevine Canyon Road. When discharge exceeds 4,900 cu ft/sec, expected at a recurrence interval of between 25 and 50 years, the Scotty 's Castle access road and bridge may be damaged and the parking lot partly inundated. A flood having a 100-year or greater recurrence interval probably would wash out the bridge and present a hazard to the stable and garage buildings but not to the castle buildings, whose foundations are higher than the predicted maximum flood level. (USGS)

  9. Sliding Rocks on Racetrack Playa, Death Valley National Park: First Observation of Rocks in Motion

    PubMed Central

    Lorenz, Ralph D.; Ray, Jib; Jackson, Brian

    2014-01-01

    The engraved trails of rocks on the nearly flat, dry mud surface of Racetrack Playa, Death Valley National Park, have excited speculation about the movement mechanism since the 1940s. Rock movement has been variously attributed to high winds, liquid water, ice, or ice flotation, but has not been previously observed in action. We recorded the first direct scientific observation of rock movements using GPS-instrumented rocks and photography, in conjunction with a weather station and time-lapse cameras. The largest observed rock movement involved >60 rocks on December 20, 2013 and some instrumented rocks moved up to 224 m between December 2013 and January 2014 in multiple move events. In contrast with previous hypotheses of powerful winds or thick ice floating rocks off the playa surface, the process of rock movement that we have observed occurs when the thin, 3 to 6 mm, “windowpane” ice sheet covering the playa pool begins to melt in late morning sun and breaks up under light winds of ∼4–5 m/s. Floating ice panels 10 s of meters in size push multiple rocks at low speeds of 2–5 m/min. along trajectories determined by the direction and velocity of the wind as well as that of the water flowing under the ice. PMID:25162535

  10. Diversity of Bacteria and Archaea in hypersaline sediment from Death Valley National Park, California

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jong-Shik; Makama, Mfundi; Petito, Janine; Park, Nyun-Ho; Cohan, Frederick M; Dungan, Robert S

    2012-01-01

    The objective of this study was to phylogenetically analyze microorganisms from the domains Bacteria and Archaea in hypersaline sediment from Death Valley National Park. Using domain-specific primers, a region of the 16S rRNA gene was amplified using polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and the product was subsequently used to create a clone library. A total of 243 bacterial clones, 99 archaeal clones, and 209 bacterial isolates were examined. The 243 clones from Bacteria were affiliated with the following groups: the Bacilli (59 clones) and Clostridia (1) of the Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes (90), Proteobacteria (27), Cyanobacteria (18), Gemmatimonadetes (41), candidate division OP1 (5), Actinobacteria (1), and the Deinococcus-Thermus division (1). Within the class Bacilli, 46 of 59 clones were tentatively identified as 10 unclassified species. The majority of bacterial isolates (130 of 209) were more closely related to the Bacillus subtilis–B. licheniformis clade than to any other recognized taxon, and an Ecotype Simulation analysis of B. subtilis relatives identified four previously unknown ecotypes. Several new genera were discovered within the Bacteroidetes (4) and the Gemmatimonadetes (2). Of the 99 archaeal clones, 94 were tentatively identified as belonging to 3 new genera within the Halobacteriaceae; other clones represented novel species within each of 4 established genera. PMID:22950020

  11. Trail formation by ice-shoved "sailing stones" observed at Racetrack Playa, Death Valley National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lorenz, R. D.; Norris, J. M.; Jackson, B. K.; Norris, R. D.; Chadbourne, J. W.; Ray, J.

    2014-08-01

    Trails in the usually-hard mud of Racetrack Playa in Death Valley National Park attest to the seemingly-improbable movement of massive rocks on an exceptionally flat surface. The movement of these rocks, previously described as "sliding stones", "playa scrapers", "sailing stones" etc., has been the subject of speculation for almost a century but is an exceptionally rare phenomenon and until now has not been directly observed. Here we report documentation of multiple rock movement and trail formation events in the winter of 2013-2014 by in situ observation, video, timelapse cameras, a dedicated meteorological station and GPS tracking of instrumented rocks. Movement involved dozens of rocks, forming fresh trails typically of 10s of meters length at speeds of ~5 cm s-1 and were caused by wind stress on a transient thin layer of floating ice. Fracture and local thinning of the ice decouples some rocks from the ice movement, such that only a subset of rocks move in a given event.

  12. Hydrostructural maps of the Death Valley regional flow system, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    Potter, C.J.; Sweetkind, D.S.; Dickerson, R.P.; Killgore, M.L.

    2002-03-15

    The locations of principal faults and structural zones that may influence ground-water flow were compiled in support of a three-dimensional ground-water model for the Death Valley regional flow system, which covers 80,000 km2 in southwestern Nevada and southeastern California. Faults include Neogene extensional and strike-slip faults and pre-Tertiary thrust faults. Emphasis was given to characteristics of faults and deformed zones that may have a high potential for influencing hydraulic conductivity. These include: (1) faulting that results in the juxtaposition of stratigraphic units with contrasting hydrologic properties, which may cause ground-water discharge and other perturbations in the flow system; (2) special physical characteristics of the fault zones, such as brecciation and fracturing, that may cause specific parts of the zone to act either as conduits or as barriers to fluid flow; (3) the presence of a variety of lithologies whose physical and deformational characteristics m ay serve to impede or enhance flow in fault zones; (4) orientation of a fault with respect to the present-day stress field, possibly influencing hydraulic conductivity along the fault zone; and (5) faults that have been active in late Pleistocene or Holocene time and areas of contemporary seismicity, which may be associated with enhanced permeabilities.

  13. Imaging the subsurface stratigraphy in the Ubehebe hydrovolcanic field (Death Valley, California) using ground penetrating radar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cagnoli, B.; Russell, J. K.

    2000-02-01

    Ground penetrating radar (GPR) surveys were carried out to collect subsurface images of the basaltic base surge deposits in the Ubehebe hydrovolcanic field, Death Valley National Park, California. Antennae with frequencies of 50, 100 and 200 MHz were used. This technique allowed the collection of useful geologic data, for example, the lower stratigraphic boundary of the pyroclastic deposits can be imaged and their thickness can be estimated. Different radar responses were also obtained from base surge deposits and underlying sedimentary rocks, which enable their recognition where no outcrops are available. Furthermore, GPR data confirmed the presence of small, eroded craters, which are partially filled by alluvium. In this case, an unconformity between the overlying, horizontally bedded alluvium and the underlying bowl-shaped base surge deposits can be recognized within the crater and the thickness of the alluvium estimated. Common mid-point (CMP) surveys suggested subsurface velocities of the electromagnetic waves in the upper part of these deposits between 0.095-0.1 m/ns.

  14. Diversity of Bacteria and Archaea in hypersaline sediment from Death Valley National Park, California.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jong-Shik; Makama, Mfundi; Petito, Janine; Park, Nyun-Ho; Cohan, Frederick M; Dungan, Robert S

    2012-06-01

    The objective of this study was to phylogenetically analyze microorganisms from the domains Bacteria and Archaea in hypersaline sediment from Death Valley National Park. Using domain-specific primers, a region of the 16S rRNA gene was amplified using polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and the product was subsequently used to create a clone library. A total of 243 bacterial clones, 99 archaeal clones, and 209 bacterial isolates were examined. The 243 clones from Bacteria were affiliated with the following groups: the Bacilli (59 clones) and Clostridia (1) of the Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes (90), Proteobacteria (27), Cyanobacteria (18), Gemmatimonadetes (41), candidate division OP1 (5), Actinobacteria (1), and the Deinococcus-Thermus division (1). Within the class Bacilli, 46 of 59 clones were tentatively identified as 10 unclassified species. The majority of bacterial isolates (130 of 209) were more closely related to the Bacillus subtilis-B. licheniformis clade than to any other recognized taxon, and an Ecotype Simulation analysis of B. subtilis relatives identified four previously unknown ecotypes. Several new genera were discovered within the Bacteroidetes (4) and the Gemmatimonadetes (2). Of the 99 archaeal clones, 94 were tentatively identified as belonging to 3 new genera within the Halobacteriaceae; other clones represented novel species within each of 4 established genera. PMID:22950020

  15. Fluorescent signatures of 2 Ma old travertine deposits in Death Valley, CA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adachi, T.; Kletetschka, G.

    2005-12-01

    Epifluorescence petrography clearly images information that cannot be seen in a standard petrographic microscope with regular transmitted polarized light. Epifluorescence examination reveals hidden structures located in less transparent areas of the thin section from Pliocene-Pleistocene spring travertine deposits in Funeral Formation in Death Valley, CA. Thin section material absorbs and reradiates light (autofluorescence). This can be caused by an extremely small number of fluorescent molecules (50 molecules per cubic micron). Fluorescent material in our thin section can be both of organic and inorganic nature. We cannot rule out micropore space filled with organic matters (aminoacids with ring structures autofluoresce). Fabric-specific isotope and textural analysis on the spring travertine deposits indicate that these deposits closely resemble modern hot-spring travertine in Yellowstone National Park. Modern deposits are known to contain abundant microbial life forms. These microbial communities live in the hot-spring and entrapped by rapidly precipitating calcite or aragonite. Epifluorescence examination of thin sections of the spring travertine calcite revealed presence of autofluorescence material in less transparent areas of thin section where the hidden distinctive structure was not otherwise seen by regular transmitting polarized light. These structures may be organic signatures trapped in between the inorganic precipitates and may be the hall mark for future approach of biosignature detection in ancient hydrothermal deposits on terrestrial and extraterrestrial environment.

  16. Trace element geochemistry in water from selected springs in Death Valley National Park, California

    SciTech Connect

    Kreamer, D.K.; Hodge, V.F.; Rabinowitz, I.; Johannesson, K.H.; Stetzenbach, K.J.

    1996-01-01

    Concentrations of 40 trace elements and other constituents in ground water from springs in Death Valley National Park were measured to investigate whether trace element composition of the ground water can be related to the aquifer materials. Samples from these springs were analyzed by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) for the trace elements and by ion chromatography (IC) for the major anions. A Principal Component Analysis was performed on the data set. Surprise and Scotty`s Springs formed one group; Texas, Nevares, and Travertine Springs formed another group; and Mesquite Springs did not group with any of the others. Scotty`s and Surprise Spring issued from volcanic rocks; Texas, Nevares, and Travertine discharge from carbonate rocks; and Mesquite Spring is located in alluvial basin-fill deposits. The first three components in each principal Component Analysis accounted for approximately 95% of the variance in the data set. The Principal Component Analysis suggests that ground water inherits its trace element composition from the rocks or aquifer material with which it has interacted and may be used for the purpose of identifying ground-water movement and source.

  17. Extraction of quantitative surface characteristics from AIRSAR data for Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kierein-Young, K. S.; Kruse, F. A.

    1992-01-01

    Polarimetric Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (AIRSAR) data were collected for the Geologic Remote Sensing Field Experiment (GRSFE) over Death Valley, California, USA, in Sep. 1989. AIRSAR is a four-look, quad-polarization, three frequency instrument. It collects measurements at C-band (5.66 cm), L-band (23.98 cm), and P-band (68.13 cm), and has a GIFOV of 10 meters and a swath width of 12 kilometers. Because the radar measures at three wavelengths, different scales of surface roughness are measured. Also, dielectric constants can be calculated from the data. The AIRSAR data were calibrated using in-scene trihedral corner reflectors to remove cross-talk; and to calibrate the phase, amplitude, and co-channel gain imbalance. The calibration allows for the extraction of accurate values of rms surface roughness, dielectric constants, sigma(sub 0) backscatter, and polarization information. The radar data sets allow quantitative characterization of small scale surface structure of geologic units, providing information about the physical and chemical processes that control the surface morphology. Combining the quantitative information extracted from the radar data with other remotely sensed data sets allows discrimination, identification and mapping of geologic units that may be difficult to discern using conventional techniques.

  18. Barriers to Coverage of Transborder Environmental Issues in the Ferghana Valley of Central Asia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Freedman, Eric

    2014-01-01

    Three former Soviet republics occupy Central Asia's Ferghana Valley, a region of serious transborder environmental problems, especially ones that involve water and energy. Most news organizations in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan provide little in-depth coverage of these issues. Journalists in one country usually do not seek news

  19. Development of Biological and Cultural Control of Olive Fruit Fly in the Central Valley of California

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The eastern side of the Central Valley of California where olives are grown for canning was surveyed for olive fruit fly, Bactrocera oleae (Rossi), infestations. The pest was found for the first time in unusually high numbers in Merced. The a parasitic wasp, Psyttalia humilis (Silvestri), was import...

  20. Barriers to Coverage of Transborder Environmental Issues in the Ferghana Valley of Central Asia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Freedman, Eric

    2014-01-01

    Three former Soviet republics occupy Central Asia's Ferghana Valley, a region of serious transborder environmental problems, especially ones that involve water and energy. Most news organizations in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan provide little in-depth coverage of these issues. Journalists in one country usually do not seek news…

  1. Evaluation of the Central Valley Partnership of the James Irvine Foundation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, Martha S.; Patton, Michael Quinn; Patrizi, Patricia

    2005-01-01

    The Central Valley Partnership (CVP) was the centerpiece of the Civic Culture Program area of the James Irvine Foundation headquartered in San Francisco. Initiated in 1996 as a "partnership for citizenship," CVP had three objectives: (1) assisting and supporting immigrants seeking citizenship; (2) promoting active civic participation throughout…

  2. Glyphosate-resistant hairy fleabane (Conyza bonariensis) Documented in the Central Valley

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In recent years poor control of hairy fleabane (Conyza bonariensis) with glyphosate has been reported by growers and pest consultants in some areas of the Central Valley. Since glyphosate-resistance in a related species horseweed (Conyza canadensis) was recently documented in similar locations, we ...

  3. 76 FR 58840 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act; Refuge Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-09-22

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act; Refuge Water Management Plans AGENCY... Refuge Water Management Plans (Refuge Criteria). Several entities have each developed a Refuge Water... requirements of these Refuge Criteria (see list in Supplementary Information below). Willow Creek Mutual...

  4. 75 FR 70020 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-11-16

    ...The following Water Management Plans are available for review: Orland-Artois Water District Kern Tulare Water District To meet the requirements of the Central Valley Project Improvement Act of 1992 (CVPIA) and the Reclamation Reform Act of 1982, the Bureau of Reclamation developed and published the Criteria for Evaluating Water Management Plans (Criteria). For the purpose of......

  5. 77 FR 33240 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-06-05

    ...The following Water Management Plans are available for review: Contra Costa Water District. City of Santa Barbara. Tulare Irrigation District. Pacheco Irrigation District. City of Tracy. Citrus Heights. Water District. To meet the requirements of the Central Valley Project Improvement Act of 1992 (CVPIA) and the Reclamation Reform......

  6. Geologic Map of the Warm Spring Canyon Area, Death Valley National Park, Inyo County, California, With a Discussion of the Regional Significance of the Stratigraphy and Structure

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wrucke, Chester T.; Stone, Paul; Stevens, Calvin H.

    2007-01-01

    Warm Spring Canyon is located in the southeastern part of the Panamint Range in east-central California, 54 km south of Death Valley National Park headquarters at Furnace Creek Ranch. For the relatively small size of the area mapped (57 km2), an unusual variety of Proterozoic and Phanerozoic rocks is present. The outcrop distribution of these rocks largely resulted from movement on the east-west-striking, south-directed Butte Valley Thrust Fault of Jurassic age. The upper plate of the thrust fault comprises a basement of Paleoproterozoic schist and gneiss overlain by a thick sequence of Mesoproterozoic and Neoproterozoic rocks, the latter of which includes diamictite generally considered to be of glacial origin. The lower plate is composed of Devonian to Permian marine formations overlain by Jurassic volcanic and sedimentary rocks. Late Jurassic or Early Cretaceous plutons intrude rocks of the area, and one pluton intrudes the Butte Valley Thrust Fault. Low-angle detachment faults of presumed Tertiary age underlie large masses of Neoproterozoic dolomite in parts of the area. Movement on these faults predated emplacement of middle Miocene volcanic rocks in deep, east-striking paleovalleys. Excellent exposures of all the rocks and structural features in the area result from sparse vegetation in the dry desert climate and from deep erosion along Warm Spring Canyon and its tributaries.

  7. Case Studies of Water Vapor and Surface Liquid Water from AVIRIS Data Measured Over Denver, CO and Death Valley, CA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gao, B.-C.; Kierein-Young, K. S.; Goetz, A. F. H.; Westwater, E. R.; Stankov, B. B.; Birkenheuer, D.

    1991-01-01

    High spatial resolution column atmospheric water vapor amounts and equivalent liquid water thicknesses of surface targets are retrieved from spectral data collected by the Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS). The retrievals are made using a nonlinear least squares curve fitting technique. Two case studies from AVIRIS data acquired over Denver-Platteville area, Colorado and over Death Valley, California are presented. The column water vapor values derived from AVIRIS data over the Denver-Platteville area are compared with those obtained from radiosondes, ground level upward-looking microwave radiometers, and geostationary satellite measurements. The column water vapor image shows spatial variation patterns related to the passage of a weather front system. The column water vapor amounts derived from AVIRIS data over Death Valley decrease with increasing surface elevation. The derived liquid water image clearly shows surface drainage patterns.

  8. Geologic application of thermal inertia imaging using HCMM data. [Death Valley and Pisgah Crater, California and Goldfield, Nevada

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paley, H. N.; Kahle, A. B. (Principal Investigator)

    1980-01-01

    During the July to September 1980 quarter the final tapes were received completing the order and preliminary processing was done. Thermal Inertia images for each of the three test sites, Death Valley and Pisgah Crater, California and Goldfield, Nevada were created using registered HCMM day/night pairs and the JPL model. A comprehensive study and analysis of the geologic application of all acquired HCMM data is in progress.

  9. Death Valley Lower Carbonate Aquifer Monitoring Program Wells Down gradient of the Proposed Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository

    SciTech Connect

    Inyo County

    2006-07-26

    Inyo County has participated in oversight activities associated with the Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository since 1987. The overall goal of these studies are the evaluation of far-field issues related to potential transport, by ground water, or radionuclides into Inyo County, including Death Valley, and the evaluation of a connection between the Lower Carbonate Aquifer (LCA) and the biosphere. Our oversight and completed Cooperative Agreement research, and a number of other investigators research indicate that there is groundwater flow between the alluvial and carbonate aquifers both at Yucca Mountain and in Inyo County. In addition to the potential of radionuclide transport through the LCA, Czarnecki (1997), with the US Geological Survey, research indicate potential radionuclide transport through the shallower Tertiary-age aquifer materials with ultimate discharge into the Franklin Lake Playa in Inyo County. The specific purpose of this Cooperative Agreement drilling program was to acquire geological, subsurface geology, and hydrologic data to: (1) establish the existence of inter-basin flow between the Amargosa Basin and Death Valley Basin; (2) characterize groundwater flow paths in the LCA through Southern Funeral Mountain Range, and (3) Evaluation the hydraulic connection between the Yucca Mountain repository and the major springs in Death Valley through the LCA.

  10. Diabolical survival in Death Valley: recent pupfish colonization, gene flow and genetic assimilation in the smallest species range on earth.

    PubMed

    Martin, Christopher H; Crawford, Jacob E; Turner, Bruce J; Simons, Lee H

    2016-01-27

    One of the most endangered vertebrates, the Devils Hole pupfish Cyprinodon diabolis, survives in a nearly impossible environment: a narrow subterranean fissure in the hottest desert on earth, Death Valley. This species became a conservation icon after a landmark 1976 US Supreme Court case affirming federal groundwater rights to its unique habitat. However, one outstanding question about this species remains unresolved: how long has diabolis persisted in this hellish environment? We used next-generation sequencing of over 13 000 loci to infer the demographic history of pupfishes in Death Valley. Instead of relicts isolated 2-3 Myr ago throughout repeated flooding of the entire region by inland seas as currently believed, we present evidence for frequent gene flow among Death Valley pupfish species and divergence after the most recent flooding 13 kyr ago. We estimate that Devils Hole was colonized by pupfish between 105 and 830 years ago, followed by genetic assimilation of pelvic fin loss and recent gene flow into neighbouring spring systems. Our results provide a new perspective on an iconic endangered species using the latest population genomic methods and support an emerging consensus that timescales for speciation are overestimated in many groups of rapidly evolving species. PMID:26817777

  11. Dating Caral, a preceramic site in the Supe Valley on the central coast of Peru.

    PubMed

    Solis, R S; Haas, J; Creamer, W

    2001-04-27

    Radiocarbon dates from the site of Caral in the Supe Valley of Peru indicate that monumental corporate architecture, urban settlement, and irrigation agriculture began in the Americas by 4090 years before the present (2627 calibrated years B.C.) to 3640 years before the present (1977 calibrated years B.C.). Caral is located 23 kilometers inland from the Pacific coast and contains a central zone of monumental, residential, and nonresidential architecture covering an area of 65 hectares. Caral is one of 18 large preceramic sites in the Supe Valley. PMID:11326098

  12. Stable Ca Isotopes in Tamarix aphylla Tree Rings, Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, W.; Depaolo, D. J.; Ingram, B. L.; Owens, T. L.

    2008-12-01

    As a dune stabilizer and windbreak, Tamarix aphylla is an exotic perennial and evergreen tree in Death Valley. Its tap roots can reach down to 30 m depth and sub-superficial side roots may reach 50 m horizontally. The species can store large amounts of water in its roots and undergoes high evapotranspiration. Since Tamarix aphylla is a perennial tree growing in desert environments and its roots reach deep to the water table, it could be a proxy for desert ecological and hydrologic systems through time. We measured Ca isotopes in the soluble fraction of 8 tree ring samples from a 50-year-old specimen growing on an alluvial fan in Death Valley near Furnace Creek. Previous studies (Yang et al, GCA 60, 1996) indicate that this tree's rings contain high sulfur concentrations (4-6% expressed as sulfate) with chemical composition of CaSO4 (0.15-0.62 H2O). The ?34S values of soluble sulfate increase from +13.5 to +18 permil VCDT from the core to the bark, which are interpreted as reflecting deeper sulfate sources as the tree grew. The ?13C variations of the tree-ring cellulose (-27.6 to -24.0 permil VPDB) reflect changes in the local precipitation and show that Tamarix aphylla undergoes C3 photosynthesis. The ?44Ca for the soluble sulfate Ca through the tree-ring section, which covers a time period from 1945 to 1993, have an average value -2.52 permil (-3.4 permil relative to seawater). Only small variations are observed, from -2.69 to -2.28; the highest value (for 1990) occurs near the end of an extended drought. These are the first measurements of tree rings, but the low ?44Ca values are consistent with previous measurements of beech roots and stems from a temperate forest (Page et al., Biogeochem. 88, 2008). In our case, the tree has only one Ca source, which is expected to be isotopically uniform and similar to both local rainfall and limestones (?44Ca ~ -0.6 permil), and with the minimal vegetation and extensive deep root system it is unlikely that there is a significant depletion of soil Ca due to plant uptake. Thus the Ca isotopic fractionation between trunk and source (?Ca = -2 permil) is clearly defined by the data. By analogy to the results of Page et al., the Ca fractionation between root and source may be larger (?Ca ~ -3 permil). This biological Ca isotope fractionation is no doubt due to transport processes during root uptake of Ca, but the magnitude is significantly larger than that observed for inorganic processes such as mineral precipitation or aqueous diffusion. The slight increase in ?44Ca in drought conditions suggests that when the tree is stressed there may be less Ca isotope fractionation, either because the Ca is held more tightly in small pores in the soil, or because the available Ca pool shrinks such that the soil Ca starts to shift to more positive ?44Ca values due to depletion of light Ca by the plant. The slowly accumulating database on Ca isotopes in plants continues to suggest that systematic Ca isotope studies may be fruitful for understanding cation transport in plants, and soil ecological conditions in general.

  13. Preliminary Characterization of a Microbial Community of Rock Varnish from Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuhlman, K. R.; LaDuc, M. T.; Kuhlman, G. M.; Anderson, R. C.; Newcombe, D. A.; Fusco, W.; Steucker, T.; Allenbach, L.; Ball, C.; Crawford, R. L.

    2003-01-01

    Rock varnish (also referred to as desert varnish in the literature because it is particularly noticeable in desert environments) is a dark, thin (typically 50-500 m thick), layered veneer composed of clay minerals cemented together by oxides and hydroxides of manganese and iron. Some scientists suggest that varnish may provide a historical record of environmental processes such as global warming and long-term climate change. However, despite more than 30 years of study using modern microanalytical and microbial culturing techniques, the nucleation and growth mechanisms of rock varnish remain a mystery. Rock varnish is of interest to the Mars science community because a varnish-like sheen has been reported on the rocks at the Viking Lander sites. It therefore important for us to understand the formation mechanisms of terrestrial varnish abiotic, biotic, or a combination of the two -- as this understanding may give us clues concerning the chemical and physical processes occurring on the surface of Mars. It is strongly believed by some in the biogeochemistry community that microbes have a role in forming rock varnish, and iron- and manganese-oxidation by microbes isolated from varnish has been extensively investigated. Only two of these studies have investigated the microbial genetics of varnish. These studies examined the morphological, physiological and molecular characteristics of microbes that had previously been cultured from various rock varnishes and identified the cultivars using 16S rDNA sequencing techniques. However, it is well known that most of organisms existing in nature are refractory to cultivation, so many important organisms would have been missed. The currently described work investigates the genetics of rock varnish microbial community from a site in the Whipple Mtns., south of Death Valley, CA, near Parker, Arizona. We employed both cultural and molecular techniques to characterize the microorganisms found within the varnish and surrounding soil with the objectives of (a) identifying microorganisms potentially involved in varnish formation, and (b) discovering microorganisms that simply use the varnish as an extreme habitat.

  14. Climate change, shifting seasons, and the ecohydrology of Devils Hole, Death Valley National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hausner, M. B.; Wilson, K. P.; Gaines, D. B.; Suarez, F. I.; Tyler, S. W.

    2011-12-01

    Devils Hole, a water-filled fracture in the carbonate aquifer of the Death Valley Regional Flow System, comprises an ecosystem that can serve as a bellwether of climate change. This 50 square meter pool of unknown depth is home to the only extant population of the endangered Devils Hole pupfish (Cyprinodon diabolis). A shallow shelf in the system provides the most suitable habitat for spawning, and the past pupfish population counts have been correlated to the water level in the system. Recently, however, population declines unrelated to water level have been observed. The 33° C waters of Devils Hole are near the upper threshold for most Cyprinodon species, and the shallow shelf experiences the greatest diurnal and seasonal temperature variability. The extremely limited habitat, small population (the spring, 2011 population survey counted approximately 100 individuals), and precarious nature of populations near survival thresholds combine to make the system exceptionally susceptible to the impacts of climate change. A hydrodynamic model of the shallow shelf was developed to simulate thermal convection in response to a number of energy fluxes, including climatic drivers such as air temperature and solar radiation. Simulations of current conditions demonstrate seasonal and diurnal changes in the temperature of the water and the substrate in which adult pupfish spawn, eggs hatch, and larvae develop. The simulated convection patterns also influence the oxygen dynamics, nutrient cycling, and the food web of the ecosystem. Simulations of future conditions using a delta change methodology point towards changes in the seasonal cycles, which may limit or shift the reproductive season of the species.

  15. Are the benches at Mormon Point, Death Valley, California, USA, scarps or strandlines?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knott, J.R.; Tinsley, J. C., III; Wells, S.G.

    2002-01-01

    The benches and risers at Mormon Point, Death Valley, USA, have long been interpreted as strandlines cut by still-stands of pluvial lakes correlative with oxygen isotope stage (OIS) 5e/6 (120,000-186,000 yr B.P.) and OIS-2 (10,000-35,000 yr B.P.). This study presents geologic mapping and geomorphic analyses (Gilbert's criteria, longitudinal profiles), which indicate that only the highest bench at Mormon Point (~90 m above mean sea level (msl)) is a lake strandline. The other prominent benches on the north-descending slope immediately below this strandline are interpreted as fault scarps offsetting a lacustrine abrasion platform. The faults offsetting the abrasion platform most likely join downward into and slip sympathetically with the Mormon Point turtleback fault, implying late Quaternary slip on this low-angle normal fault. Our geomorphic reinterpretation implies that the OIS-5e/6 lake receded rapidly enough not to cut strandlines and was ~90 m deep. Consistent with independent core studies of the salt pan, no evidence of OIS-2 lake strandlines was found at Mormon Point, which indicates that the maximum elevation of the OIS-2 lake surface was -30 m msl. Thus, as measured by pluvial lake depth, the OIS-2 effective precipitation was significantly less than during OIS-5e/6, a finding that is more consistent with other studies in the region. The changed geomorphic context indicates that previous surface exposure dates on fault scarps and benches at Mormon Point are uninterpretable with respect to lake history. ?? 2002 University of Washington.

  16. Pleistocene-Holocene transition in the central Mississippi River valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Arsdale, Roy B.; Cupples, William B.; Csontos, Ryan M.

    2014-06-01

    Within the northern Mississippi embayment the ancestral Mississippi River flowed south through the Western Lowlands and the ancestral Ohio River flowed through the Eastern Lowlands for most of the Pleistocene. Previous investigators have mapped and dated the terraces of their respective braid belts. This current research investigates the three-dimensional aspect of the Quaternary alluvium north of Memphis, Tennessee, through the interpretation of 3374 geologic well logs that are 91.4 m (300 ft) deep. The braid belts are capped by a thin silt/clay horizon (Pleistocene loess) that overlies gravelly sand, which in turn overlies sandy gravel. The base of the Pleistocene alluvium beneath the Ash Hill (27.3-24.6 ka), Melville Ridge (41.6-34.5 ka), and Dudley (63.5-50.1 ka) terraces of the Western Lowland slope southerly by 0.275 m/km and all have an average basal elevation of 38 m. Near Beedeville, Arkansas, the bases of these terraces descend 20 m across a northeast-striking down-to-the-southeast fault that coincides with the western margin of the Cambrian Reelfoot rift. The maximum depth of flow (lowest elevation of base of alluvium) occurred in the Eastern Lowlands and appears to have been the downstream continuation of the ancestral Ohio River Cache valley course in southern Illinois. In traversing from west to east in the Eastern Lowlands, the Sikeston braid belt (19.7-17.8 ka) has a basal elevation averaging 7 m, the Kennett braid belt (16.1-14.4 ka) averages 13 m, the Morehouse (12 ka) braid belt averages 24 m, and the Holocene (≤ 10 ka) Mississippi River floodplain has the highest average basal elevation at 37 m. Along this easterly traverse the base of the Quaternary alluvium rises and the age of alluvium decreases. The eastward thinning of the floodplain alluvium in the Eastern Lowlands appears to be caused by decreasing Mississippi River discharge as it transitioned from the Wisconsinan glacial maximum to the Holocene. The base of the Holocene Mississippi River floodplain averages 23 m higher in elevation than the Pleistocene floodplain bases in the Eastern Lowlands. This high suballuvial surface (platform) is bound by the tectonically uplifted Joiner ridge, Blytheville arch, Charleston uplift, and Bluff Line fault. The spatial relationship and similar histories of the platform and bounding structures suggest that Quaternary erosion and tectonics are related.

  17. Water availability and land subsidence in the Central Valley, California, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faunt, Claudia C.; Sneed, Michelle; Traum, Jon; Brandt, Justin T.

    2016-05-01

    The Central Valley in California (USA) covers about 52,000 km2 and is one of the most productive agricultural regions in the world. This agriculture relies heavily on surface-water diversions and groundwater pumpage to meet irrigation water demand. Because the valley is semi-arid and surface-water availability varies substantially, agriculture relies heavily on local groundwater. In the southern two thirds of the valley, the San Joaquin Valley, historic and recent groundwater pumpage has caused significant and extensive drawdowns, aquifer-system compaction and subsidence. During recent drought periods (2007-2009 and 2012-present), groundwater pumping has increased owing to a combination of decreased surface-water availability and land-use changes. Declining groundwater levels, approaching or surpassing historical low levels, have caused accelerated and renewed compaction and subsidence that likely is mostly permanent. The subsidence has caused operational, maintenance, and construction-design problems for water-delivery and flood-control canals in the San Joaquin Valley. Planning for the effects of continued subsidence in the area is important for water agencies. As land use, managed aquifer recharge, and surface-water availability continue to vary, long-term groundwater-level and subsidence monitoring and modelling are critical to understanding the dynamics of historical and continued groundwater use resulting in additional water-level and groundwater storage declines, and associated subsidence. Modeling tools such as the Central Valley Hydrologic Model, can be used in the evaluation of management strategies to mitigate adverse impacts due to subsidence while also optimizing water availability. This knowledge will be critical for successful implementation of recent legislation aimed toward sustainable groundwater use.

  18. Water availability and land subsidence in the Central Valley, California, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faunt, Claudia C.; Sneed, Michelle; Traum, Jon; Brandt, Justin T.

    2015-11-01

    The Central Valley in California (USA) covers about 52,000 km2 and is one of the most productive agricultural regions in the world. This agriculture relies heavily on surface-water diversions and groundwater pumpage to meet irrigation water demand. Because the valley is semi-arid and surface-water availability varies substantially, agriculture relies heavily on local groundwater. In the southern two thirds of the valley, the San Joaquin Valley, historic and recent groundwater pumpage has caused significant and extensive drawdowns, aquifer-system compaction and subsidence. During recent drought periods (2007-2009 and 2012-present), groundwater pumping has increased owing to a combination of decreased surface-water availability and land-use changes. Declining groundwater levels, approaching or surpassing historical low levels, have caused accelerated and renewed compaction and subsidence that likely is mostly permanent. The subsidence has caused operational, maintenance, and construction-design problems for water-delivery and flood-control canals in the San Joaquin Valley. Planning for the effects of continued subsidence in the area is important for water agencies. As land use, managed aquifer recharge, and surface-water availability continue to vary, long-term groundwater-level and subsidence monitoring and modelling are critical to understanding the dynamics of historical and continued groundwater use resulting in additional water-level and groundwater storage declines, and associated subsidence. Modeling tools such as the Central Valley Hydrologic Model, can be used in the evaluation of management strategies to mitigate adverse impacts due to subsidence while also optimizing water availability. This knowledge will be critical for successful implementation of recent legislation aimed toward sustainable groundwater use.

  19. Sudden Unexplained Nocturnal Death Syndrome in Central China (Hubei)

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Zhenglian; Mu, Jiao; Chen, Xinshan; Dong, Hongmei

    2016-01-01

    Abstract A retrospective study was conducted at Tongji Forensic Medical Center in Hubei (TFMCH) from 1999 to 2014. Forty-nine cases of sudden unexplained nocturnal death syndrome (SUNDS) were collected. The SUNDS rate was 1.0% in the total number of cases, in which an incidence was fluctuating over the years. Interestingly, April and January, and 3:00 to 6:00 am were the peak months and times of death. Among the decedents, farmers and migrant workers accounted for 67.3%. The syndrome predominantly attacked males in their 30s. One victim had sinus tachycardia. Thirteen victims (26.5%) were witnessed and had abnormal symptoms near death. Macroscopically, compared to sudden noncardiac deaths, the weights of brain, heart, and lungs had no statistical difference in SUNDS. Microscopically, the incidence of lung edema (45 cases, 91.8%) was significantly higher in SUNDS group than in the control group (27 cases, 55.1%). 82.9% of 35 SUNDS cases examined displayed minor histological anomalies of the cardiac conduction system (CCS), including mild or moderate fatty, fibrous or fibrofatty tissue replacement, insignificant stenosis of node artery, and punctate hemorrhage in the node area. These findings suggested that minor CCS abnormalities might be the substrates for some SUNDS deaths. Therefore, SUNDS victims might suffer ventricular fibrillation and acute cardiopulmonary failure before death. Further in-depth studies are needed to unveil the underlying mechanisms of SUNDS. PMID:26945374

  20. Geophysical Investigation of Avon Valley, West-Central Montana, using Gravity and Seismic Reflection Profiling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knatterud, L.; Mosolf, J.; Speece, M. A.; Zhou, X.

    2014-12-01

    The Avon Valley and adjacent mountains in west-central Montana lie within the Lewis and Clark Line, a major system of WNW-striking faults and folds that transect the more northerly structural grain of the northern Rockies and represent alternating episodes of transtensional and transpressional deformation. The northwest-trending valley has been previously interpreted as an extensional half graben filled with Tertiary sedimentary and volcanic deposits; however, little-to-no geophysical constraints on basin architecture or the thickness of Tertiary fill have been reported. A major northwest-striking fault with significant normal displacement clearly bounds the valley to the northeast, juxtaposing Tertiary sedimentary deposits against Proterozoic-Mesozoic units deformed by shortening structures and crosscut by Cretaceous granitic intrusions. Tertiary volcanic deposits unconformably overlying faulted and folded Phanerozoic-Proterozoic sequences in the eastern Garnet Range bound the valley to the southwest, but in the past no faults had been mapped along this margin. New mapping by the Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology (MBMG) has identified a system of high-angle, northwest- and northeast-striking, oblique-slip faults along the southwest border of the Avon calling into question if the valley is a half, full, or asymmetrical graben. Geophysical data has recently been acquired by Montana Tech to help define the structural architecture of the Avon Valley and the thickness of its Tertiary fill. Gravity data and a short seismic reflection profile have been collected and a preliminary interpretation of these data indicates a half graben with a series of normal faults bounding the western side of the valley. Ongoing gravity data collection throughout 2014 should refine this interpretation by better defining the bedrock-Tertiary interface at depth.

  1. Groundwater depletion and sustainability of irrigation in the US High Plains and Central Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scanlon, Bridget R.; Faunt, Claudia C.; Longuevergne, Laurent; Reedy, Robert C.; Alley, William M.; McGuire, Virginia L.; McMahon, Peter B.

    2012-01-01

    Aquifer overexploitation could significantly impact crop production in the United States because 60% of irrigation relies on groundwater. Groundwater depletion in the irrigated High Plains and California Central Valley accounts for ~50% of groundwater depletion in the United States since 1900. A newly developed High Plains recharge map shows that high recharge in the northern High Plains results in sustainable pumpage, whereas lower recharge in the central and southern High Plains has resulted in focused depletion of 330 km3 of fossil groundwater, mostly recharged during the past 13,000 y. Depletion is highly localized with about a third of depletion occurring in 4% of the High Plains land area. Extrapolation of the current depletion rate suggests that 35% of the southern High Plains will be unable to support irrigation within the next 30 y. Reducing irrigation withdrawals could extend the lifespan of the aquifer but would not result in sustainable management of this fossil groundwater. The Central Valley is a more dynamic, engineered system, with north/south diversions of surface water since the 1950s contributing to ~7× higher recharge. However, these diversions are regulated because of impacts on endangered species. A newly developed Central Valley Hydrologic Model shows that groundwater depletion since the 1960s, totaling 80 km3, occurs mostly in the south (Tulare Basin) and primarily during droughts. Increasing water storage through artificial recharge of excess surface water in aquifers by up to 3 km3 shows promise for coping with droughts and improving sustainability of groundwater resources in the Central Valley.

  2. Groundwater depletion and sustainability of irrigation in the US High Plains and Central Valley.

    PubMed

    Scanlon, Bridget R; Faunt, Claudia C; Longuevergne, Laurent; Reedy, Robert C; Alley, William M; McGuire, Virginia L; McMahon, Peter B

    2012-06-12

    Aquifer overexploitation could significantly impact crop production in the United States because 60% of irrigation relies on groundwater. Groundwater depletion in the irrigated High Plains and California Central Valley accounts for ~50% of groundwater depletion in the United States since 1900. A newly developed High Plains recharge map shows that high recharge in the northern High Plains results in sustainable pumpage, whereas lower recharge in the central and southern High Plains has resulted in focused depletion of 330 km(3) of fossil groundwater, mostly recharged during the past 13,000 y. Depletion is highly localized with about a third of depletion occurring in 4% of the High Plains land area. Extrapolation of the current depletion rate suggests that 35% of the southern High Plains will be unable to support irrigation within the next 30 y. Reducing irrigation withdrawals could extend the lifespan of the aquifer but would not result in sustainable management of this fossil groundwater. The Central Valley is a more dynamic, engineered system, with north/south diversions of surface water since the 1950s contributing to ~7× higher recharge. However, these diversions are regulated because of impacts on endangered species. A newly developed Central Valley Hydrologic Model shows that groundwater depletion since the 1960s, totaling 80 km(3), occurs mostly in the south (Tulare Basin) and primarily during droughts. Increasing water storage through artificial recharge of excess surface water in aquifers by up to 3 km(3) shows promise for coping with droughts and improving sustainability of groundwater resources in the Central Valley. PMID:22645352

  3. Groundwater depletion and sustainability of irrigation in the US High Plains and Central Valley

    PubMed Central

    Scanlon, Bridget R.; Faunt, Claudia C.; Longuevergne, Laurent; Reedy, Robert C.; Alley, William M.; McGuire, Virginia L.; McMahon, Peter B.

    2012-01-01

    Aquifer overexploitation could significantly impact crop production in the United States because 60% of irrigation relies on groundwater. Groundwater depletion in the irrigated High Plains and California Central Valley accounts for ∼50% of groundwater depletion in the United States since 1900. A newly developed High Plains recharge map shows that high recharge in the northern High Plains results in sustainable pumpage, whereas lower recharge in the central and southern High Plains has resulted in focused depletion of 330 km3 of fossil groundwater, mostly recharged during the past 13,000 y. Depletion is highly localized with about a third of depletion occurring in 4% of the High Plains land area. Extrapolation of the current depletion rate suggests that 35% of the southern High Plains will be unable to support irrigation within the next 30 y. Reducing irrigation withdrawals could extend the lifespan of the aquifer but would not result in sustainable management of this fossil groundwater. The Central Valley is a more dynamic, engineered system, with north/south diversions of surface water since the 1950s contributing to ∼7× higher recharge. However, these diversions are regulated because of impacts on endangered species. A newly developed Central Valley Hydrologic Model shows that groundwater depletion since the 1960s, totaling 80 km3, occurs mostly in the south (Tulare Basin) and primarily during droughts. Increasing water storage through artificial recharge of excess surface water in aquifers by up to 3 km3 shows promise for coping with droughts and improving sustainability of groundwater resources in the Central Valley. PMID:22645352

  4. Hydrogeologic framework of Antelope Valley and Bedell Flat, Washoe County, west-central Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Berger, D.L.; Ponce, D.A.; Ross, W.C.

    2001-01-01

    Description of the hydrogeologic framework of Antelope Valley and Bedell Flat in west-central Nevada adds to the general knowledge of regional ground-water flow north of the Reno-Sparks metropolitan area. The hydrogeologic framework is defined by the rocks and deposits that transmit ground water or impede its movement and by the combined thickness of Cenozoic deposits. When data are lacking about the subsurface geology of an area, geophysical methods can be used to provide additional information. In this study, gravimetric and seismic-refraction methods were used to infer the form of structural features and to estimate the thickness of Cenozoic deposits in each of the two valleys. In Antelope Valley, the thickness of these deposits probably does not exceed about 300 feet, suggesting that ground-water storage in the basin-fill aquifer is limited. Beneath Bedell Flat is an elongated, northeast-trending structural depression in the pre-Cenozoic basement; the maximum thickness of Cenozoic deposits is about 2,500 feet beneath the south-central part of the valley. Shallow ground water in the northwest corner of Bedell Flat may be a result of decreasing depth to the pre-Cenozoic basement.

  5. Hydrologic reconnaissance of the Dugway Valley-Government Creek area, West-Central Utah

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stephens, Jerry C.; Sumsion, C.T.

    1978-01-01

    The Dugway Valley-Government Creek area covers about 890 square miles (2,300 square kilometers) in west-central Utah. Total annual precipitation on the area averages about 380,000 acre-feet (470 cubic hectometers). Most streams are ephemeral except for a few in their upper reaches--all are ephemeral below the altitude of about 6,000 feet (1,830 meters). Surface-water development and use in the area are insignificant.

  6. Potential hazards from floodflows and debris movement in the Furnace Creek area, Death Valley National Monument, California-Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crippen, John R.

    1979-01-01

    Death Valley is known as the driest and hottest region in the United States. Despite the aridity of the valley itself, however , very heavy rainfall sometimes occurs in the nearby mountains. Such violent rainstorms are likely to be of relatively short duration and to occur over rather small areas; nevertheless, they sometimes produce large floodflows that in turn cause severe erosion and flows of debris. The debris-laden flows may be hazardous to life and property. Given sufficient knowledge of the hydrologic and hydraulic environment, the degree of hazard can be estimated. Potential hazards are defined for areas in the vicinity of the Furnace Creek fan and the Park Service residential area. (Woodard-USGS)

  7. Revised magnitude-bound relation for the Wabash Valley seismic zone of the central United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Olson, S.M.; Green, R.A.; Obermeier, S.F.

    2005-01-01

    Seismic hazard assessment in the central United States, and in particular the Wabash Valley seismic zone of Indiana-Illinois, frequently relies on empirical estimates of paleoearthquake magnitudes (M). In large part these estimates have been made using the magnitude-bound method. Existing region-specific magnitude-bound relations rely heavily on only a few historical earthquakes in the central United States and eastern Canada that induced reported liquefaction features. Recent seismological studies have suggested smaller magnitudes than previously presumed for some of these earthquakes, however, and other studies have reinterpreted site-to-source distances to liquefaction features associated with some of these earthquakes. In this paper, we re-examine historical earthquakes (M > ???5) that occurred in the central and eastern United States and eastern Canada; some of these earthquakes triggered liquefaction and others did not. Based on our findings, we reinterpret the region-specific magnitude-bound relation for the Wabash Valley. Using this revised magnitude-bound relation, we present magnitude estimates for four prehistoric earthquakes that occurred in the Wabash Valley seismic zone during Holocene time.

  8. Satellites measure recent rates of groundwater depletion in California's Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Famiglietti, J. S.; Lo, M.; Ho, S. L.; Bethune, J.; Anderson, K. J.; Syed, T. H.; Swenson, S. C.; de Linage, C. R.; Rodell, M.

    2011-02-01

    In highly-productive agricultural areas such as California's Central Valley, where groundwater often supplies the bulk of the water required for irrigation, quantifying rates of groundwater depletion remains a challenge owing to a lack of monitoring infrastructure and the absence of water use reporting requirements. Here we use 78 months (October, 2003-March, 2010) of data from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment satellite mission to estimate water storage changes in California's Sacramento and San Joaquin River Basins. We find that the basins are losing water at a rate of 31.0 ± 2.7 mm yr-1 equivalent water height, equal to a volume of 30.9 km3 for the study period, or nearly the capacity of Lake Mead, the largest reservoir in the United States. We use additional observations and hydrological model information to determine that the majority of these losses are due to groundwater depletion in the Central Valley. Our results show that the Central Valley lost 20.4 ± 3.9 mm yr-1 of groundwater during the 78-month period, or 20.3 km3 in volume. Continued groundwater depletion at this rate may well be unsustainable, with potentially dire consequences for the economic and food security of the United States.

  9. Structural consequences of the emplacement of Ubehebe Peak Intrusion, Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, Th.; Michel, J.; Baumgartner, L. P.; Passchier, C. W.

    2003-04-01

    The quartz-monzonitic Ubehebe Peak Intrusion is located in Death Valley National Park, California (USA). It belongs to a series of alcalic intrusions, which formed the Hunter Mountain Batholith. The emplacement of the intrusion took place at 173±1 Ma (D2) into a sequence of Palaeozoic carbonates. It intruded at ˜1,5 kbar and produced 675^oC at the contact. Interpretation of deformation is complicated by pre-existing structures and the occurrence of syn-intrusive deformation. The pre-intrusive permian to triassic compressional event of the Sonoma orogeny formed a SW dipping thrust-sheet-system (D1). Deformation in the area is heterogeneous, but D1 related strain clearly increases towards the west, where a foliation is formed in carbonates. Ductile deformation in the west is characterized by mylonites with sinistral movement accompanied by SSW-vergent folds. Lineations plunge 40 degrees, indicating top towards SSE movements. The dip of the fold-axes in the east are 100/60, while in the west they dip with more than 80 degrees towards SSW, and are overturned in places. Syn-intrusive deformation (D2) affected host rocks proximal to the intrusion (˜800m). No new foliation is recognized. It led to a preferred orientation of c-axes of recristallized carbonates and folding of the pre-existing D1 fold-axes. The axial planes of folds outside the contact zone strike N-S, while closer towards the intrusion, fold hinges are deflected towards the edges of the intrusion. In the west they are deflected towards SW and in the east towards SE respectively. South of the intrusion a kilometre scale fold hinge was bend anticlockwise about 90 degrees, to strike E-W. It is now aligned between the Hunter Mountain main mass and its satellite, the Ubehebe Peak Intrusion. Tremolite in the metamorphic aureole locally defines a lineation in the D1 foliation. We interpret this to show that growth was controlled by the pre-existing foliation. Neither tremolite nor delicate tabular forsterite show any signs of post-growth deformation. Hence, there is no evidence of deformation after the emplacement and growth of the contact metamorphic assemblage. The brittle, extensional Basin Range-Tectonic (D3) cut the area into large blocks with little or no tilting.

  10. A Geophysical Survey of the Quaternary Beatty Junction Paleolake Shoreline Deposit, Death Valley National Park, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Craig, M.; Warnke, D.; Teitler, L.; Narvaez, R.

    2005-12-01

    We conducted a ground-penetrating radar (GPR) and seismic refraction survey of the Beatty Junction Shoreline Deposit in Death Valley National Park in March 2005. The deposit is a beach barrier bar approximately 500 m long, 50 m wide, and 5 m high, at an elevation of about 30 m above sea level and corresponds to a relict shoreline of the former Lake Manly (Orme and Orme, Phys. Geog., 12, pp. 334-346, 1980). The bar is oriented WSW-ENE, slopes to the east and is cut by the Beatty Junction Road. The longitudinal profile of the bar slopes to the east and is slightly concave upward. A total of 730 m of GPR data were recorded, including a longitudinal line 360 m in length, oriented along the crest of the bar, and four transverse lines, each approximately 100 m long. A hammer seismic refraction line was also recorded along the crest of the bar, and yielded a 3-layer model consisting of a surface layer about 1 m thick with a velocity of 200 m/s, a second layer 4-9 m thick with a velocity of 700 m/s, and a basal unit with a velocity of 1500 m/s. The uppermost layer apparently corresponds to an unconsolidated surface veneer of coarse gravel that has been winnowed to form desert pavement. The second layer is presumably sand and gravel that forms the main portion of the bar, and which thins in the longitudinal direction, from 9 m in the west to 4 m in the east. The third, basal layer represents older, more consolidated fan sediments. Shallow reflectors on the lakeward side of two of the transverse GPR lines have a distinct step-like appearance that may represent berms. All GPR lines show a thin surface layer, about 1 m thick, that unconformably covers all reflectors in the interior of the deposit, similar to the Hanaupah Shoreline Deposit at Tule Spring, described by Ibbeken and Warnke ( J. Paleolimnology, 23, pp. 439-447, 2002). The age of the deposit is given as 153 ± 12 Ka, late in Marine Isotope Stage 6 (Orme and Orme, 1991). Since this age range overlaps with that given by Machette et al. for the Tule Spring deposit ( GSA Abstracts with Programs, 34, pp. 257-258, 2003), we consider both deposits nearly time equivalent, deposited near or during Termination II.

  11. Simulation of recharge for the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system using an integrated hydrologic model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hevesi, J. A.; Regan, R. S.; Hill, M. C.; Heywood, C.; Kohn, M. S.

    2012-12-01

    A proof-of-concept study was conducted using the integrated hydrologic model, GSFLOW, to simulate spatially and temporally distributed recharge for the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system (DVRFS). GSFLOW is an integrated groundwater - surface water flow model that combines two modeling applications: the Precipitation-Runoff-Modeling-System (PRMS) and MODFLOW. Previous methods used to estimate recharge for the DVRFS include empirical models based on precipitation, applications of the chloride mass-balance method, and applications of a precipitation-runoff model, INFIL, which used a daily time step to simulate recharge as net infiltration through the root zone. The GSFLOW model offers several potential advantages compared to the previous methods including (1) the ability to simulate complex flow through a thick unsaturated zone (UZ), allowing for the dampening and time delay of recharge relative to the infiltration signal at the top of the UZ and also allowing for the redistribution of flow within the UZ, as enabled by the MODFLOW-NWT and UZF capabilities, (2) the simulation of rejected recharge in response to the dynamics of groundwater discharge and low permeability zones in the UZ, (3) a more explicit representation of streamflow and recharge processes in the mostly ephemeral stream channels that characterize the DVRFS, and (4) the ability to simulate complex flow paths for runoff occurring as both overland flow and shallow subsurface flow (interflow) in the soil zone using a network of cascades connecting hydrologic response units (HRUs). Simulations were done using a daily time step for water years 1980-2010. Preliminary estimates of recharge using GSFLOW indicate that the distribution of recharge is highly variable both spatially and temporally due to variability in precipitation, snowmelt, evapotranspiration, runoff, and the permeability of bedrock and alluvium underlying the root zone. Results averaged over the areas of subbasins were similar to results obtained from previous studies. However, estimates of recharge on the local scale of the HRUs indicate significant (greater than 100 percent) differences at some locations compared to results obtained using INFIL due to differences in (1) the geometry and scale of HRUs, (2) the layout of the cascading flow network and the location of stream channels, (3) the representation of the physical characteristics of the root zone, and (4) model processes controlling the simulation of evapotranspiration and the movement of water through the root zone.

  12. Evaluation of multi-scale hyperspectral reflectance and emittance image data for remote mineral mapping in northeastern Death Valley National Park, California and Oasis Valley, Nevada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aslett, Zan

    This dissertation focuses upon the analyses of hyperspectral reflectance and thermal emission image data to remotely detect and map surficial mineralogy in an arid environment in southern Nevada and southeastern California. It includes four manuscripts prepared for submission to peer-reviewed journals, which are presented as single chapters. The research involves the use of longwave-infrared (LWIR) hyper- and multi-spectral measurements made from ground, aerial, and spaceborne perspectives of sedimentary and meta-sedimentary geologic units in northeastern Death Valley National Park, California and both shortwave-infrared (SWIR) and LWIR hyperspectral measurements in an area of diverse Paleozoic and Tertiary geology in Oasis Valley, Nevada. In Chapter 1, a brief overview of the dissertation is provided, including background on reflected and thermal-infrared mineral spectroscopy; remote sensing; the impacts of spatial and spectral resolution upon the ability to detect, identify, and map minerals using remote sensing image data; and the use of combined reflectance and emittance image data to better map minerals. In Chapter 2, ground-based SEBASS LWIR hyperspectral image data is analyzed in order to determine the utility of very high resolution remotely-sensed emittance measurements to delineate late-Proterozoic and Paleozoic sedimentary lithologies of an outcrop at Hell's Gate, Death Valley. In Chapter 3, airborne SEBASS image data over Boundary Canyon are analyzed in conjunction with moderate-scale geologic maps and laboratory measurements to map minerals associated with sedimentary and meta-sedimentary rocks and important in recognizing a detachment fault structure, as well as metamorphic facies. In Chapter 4, ground-based and aerial SEBASS, aerial MASTER, and spaceborne ASTER emittance measurements are compared over two study sites to determine what repercussions viewing perspective and spatial, spectral, and radiometric resolutions have upon remote identification and mapping of minerals associated with the Boundary Canyon detachment fault. In Chapter 5, a comparison of reflectance and emittance hyperspectral measurements made over Oasis Valley is used to determine whether certain minerals are optimally detected, identified, and mapped within a certain wavelength range. In Chapter 6, the presented research is summarized, repercussions of the results are analyzed, and future research possibilities are suggested. The research was successful in presenting: (1) new uses of imaging spectrometer data, (2) identifying mineralogic indicators of detachment faulting in the Boundary Canyon study area, (3) scale-based limitations upon detection of these mineral components associated with detachment faulting, and (4) limitations upon identifying particular minerals in specific wavelength segments, thereby constraining expectations of future VNIR/SWIR and LWIR image data mineral mapping surveys.

  13. Morphotectonic study of the lower Sangro River valley (Abruzzi, Central Italy)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Alessandro, Leandro; Miccadei, Enrico; Piacentini, Tommaso

    2008-11-01

    This work analyses the morphotectonic setting of the Adriatic piedmont of Central Italy, in order to outline the role of tectonics in the development of the fluvial landscape in this area. Particularly, it focuses on the Sangro River, which flows in the southern Abruzzi, from the Apennines, through the piedmont, to the Adriatic coast. The piedmont area developed in a marine environment from the Pliocene to the Early Pleistocene resulting in the deposition of a clayey-sandy sequence. Afterwards, regional uplift processes with NE tilting led to the deposition of a regressive conglomeratic sequence, as the area evolved into a continental environment. This work is based on the qualitative and quantitative study of drainage patterns and on the analysis and correlation of selected morphological evidence of tectonics on fluvial terraces, in order to define the role of tectonics in the geomorphological evolution of the lower Sangro River valley. The drainage network and its statistical azimuthal distributions are analysed; the distribution and the transverse and longitudinal profiles of fluvial terraces are investigated and the morphological evidence for tectonics is then assessed: river bends, linear valleys, beheaded and hanging valleys, counterflow confluences of streams. Space and time correlation of these features allows us to highlight the effects of regional uplift, tilting, and local tectonics on drainage development. Following the emergence of the piedmont area (Middle Pleistocene), uplift and tilting determined a SW-NE consequent and parallel drainage. Progressive incision shaped the Sangro valley as a consequent valley. Local tectonics along NNW-SSE and WNW-ESE faults and fractures resulted in the incision of linear valleys, beheading the previous SW-NE drainage, and controlled the development of a rectangular drainage network (late Middle Pleistocene). The drainage network was then rearranged by selective erosion processes, maintaining a strong inheritance from of its Middle Pleistocene configuration.

  14. Atmospheric transport of organophosphate pesticides from California's Central Valley to the Sierra Nevada Mountains

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zabik, John M.; Seiber, James N.

    1993-01-01

    Atmospheric transport of organophosphate pesticides from California's Central Valley to the Sierra Nevada mountains was assessed by collecting air- and wet-deposition samples during December, January, February, and March, 1990 to 1991. Large-scale spraying of these pesticides occurs during December and January to control insect infestations in valley orchards. Sampling sites were placed at 114- (base of the foothills), 533-, and 1920-m elevations. Samples acquired at these sites contained chlorpyrifos [phosphorothioic acid; 0,0-diethyl 0-(3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinyl) ester], parathion [phosphorothioic acid, 0-0-diethylo-(4-nitrophenyl) ester], diazinon {phosphorothioic acid, 0,0-diethyl 0-[6-methyl-2-(1-methylethyl)-4-pyrimidinyl] ester} diazinonoxon {phosphoric acid, 0,0-diethyl 0-[6-methyl-2-(1-methylethyl)-4-pyrimidinyl] ester}, and paraoxon [phosphoric acid, 0,0-diethyl 0-(4-nitrophenyl) ester] in both air and wet deposition samples. Air concentrations of chloropyrifos, diazinon and parathion ranged from 13 to 13 000 pg/m3 at the base of the foothills. At 533-m air concentrations were below the limit of quantification (1.4 pg/m3) to 83 pg/m3 and at 1920 m concentrations were below the limit of quantification. Concentrations in wet deposition varied with distance and elevation from the Central Valley. Rainwater concentrations at the base of the foot hills ranged from 16 to 7600 pg/mL. At 533-m rain and snow water concentrations ranged from below the limit of quantification (1.3 pg/mL) to 140 pg/mL and at 1920 m concentrations ranged from below the limit of quantification to 48 pg/mL. These findings indicate that atmospheric transport of pesticides applied in the valley to the Sierra Nevada mountains is occurring, but the levels decrease as distance and elevation increase from the valley floor.

  15. Hydrogeologic framework of the Wood River Valley aquifer system, south-central Idaho

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartolino, James R.; Adkins, Candice B.

    2012-01-01

    The Wood River Valley contains most of the population of Blaine County and the cities of Sun Valley, Ketchum, Hailey, and Bellevue. This mountain valley is underlain by the alluvial Wood River Valley aquifer system, which consists primarily of a single unconfined aquifer that underlies the entire valley, an underlying confined aquifer that is present only in the southernmost valley, and the confining unit that separates them. The entire population of the area depends on groundwater for domestic supply, either from domestic or municipal-supply wells, and rapid population growth since the 1970s has caused concern about the long-term sustainability of the groundwater resource. As part of an ongoing U.S. Geological Survey effort to characterize the groundwater resources of the Wood River Valley, this report describes the hydrogeologic framework of the Wood River Valley aquifer system. Although most of the Wood River Valley aquifer system is composed of Quaternary-age sediments and basalts of the Wood River Valley and its tributaries, older igneous, sedimentary, or metamorphic rocks that underlie these Quaternary deposits also are used for water supply. It is unclear to what extent these rocks are hydraulically connected to the main part of Wood River Valley aquifer system and thus whether they constitute separate aquifers. Paleozoic sedimentary rocks in and near the study area that produce water to wells and springs are the Phi Kappa and Trail Creek Formations (Ordovician and Silurian), the Milligen Formation (Devonian), and the Sun Valley Group including the Wood River Formation (Pennsylvanian-Permian) and the Dollarhide Formation (Permian). These sedimentary rocks are intruded by granitic rocks of the Late Cretaceous Idaho batholith. Eocene Challis Volcanic Group rocks overlie all of the older rocks (except where removed by erosion). Miocene Idavada Volcanics are found in the southern part of the study area. Most of these rocks have been folded, faulted, and metamorphosed to some degree, thus rock types and their relationships vary over distance. Quaternary-age sediment and basalt compose the primary source of groundwater in the Wood River Valley aquifer system. These Quaternary deposits can be divided into three units: a coarse-grained sand and gravel unit, a fine-grained silt and clay unit, and a single basalt unit. The fine- and coarse-grained units were primarily deposited as alluvium derived from glaciation in the surrounding mountains and upper reaches of tributary canyons. The basalt unit is found in the southeastern Bellevue fan area and is composed of two flows of different ages. Most of the groundwater produced from the Wood River Valley aquifer system is from the coarse-grained deposits. The altitude of the pre-Quaternary bedrock surface in the Wood River Valley was compiled from about 1,000 well-driller reports for boreholes drilled to bedrock and about 70 Horizontal-to-Vertical Spectral Ratio (HVSR) ambient-noise measurements. The bedrock surface generally mimics the land surface by decreasing down tributary canyons and the main valley from north to south; it ranges from more than 6,700 feet in Baker Creek to less than 4,600 feet in the central Bellevue fan. Most of the south-central portion of the Bellevue fan is underlain by an apparent topographically closed area on the bedrock surface that appears to drain to the southwest towards Stanton Crossing. Quaternary sediment thickness ranges from less than a foot on main and tributary valley margins to about 350 feet in the central Bellevue fan. Hydraulic conductivity for 81 wells in the study area was estimated from well-performance tests reported on well-driller reports. Estimated hydraulic conductivity for 79 wells completed in alluvium ranges from 1,900 feet per day (ft/d) along Warm Springs Creek to less than 1 ft/d in upper Croy Canyon. A well completed in bedrock had an estimated hydraulic conductivity value of 10 ft/d, one well completed in basalt had a value of 50 ft/d, and three wells completed in the confined system had values ranging from 32 to 52 ft/d. Subsurface outflow of groundwater from the Wood River Valley aquifer system into the eastern Snake River Plain aquifer was estimated to be 4,000 acre-feet per year. Groundwater outflow beneath Stanton Crossing to the Camas Prairie was estimated to be 300 acre-feet per year.

  16. Preliminary Assessment of Rock Fall Hazard and Risk In The Central Part of The Nera Valley, Umbria Region, Central Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghigi, S.; Guzzetti, F.; Reichenbach, P.; Detti, R.

    Rock falls are one of the most common types of fast moving landslides in mountain areas. They represent the most abundant landslides triggered by earthquakes. Rock falls are one of the primary causes of fatalities and of damage caused by landslides. Despite being widespread and highly destructive, only a few attempts have been made to establish rock fall hazard and the associate risk along transportation corridors in mountain areas. We present a preliminary assessment of rock fall hazard and risk for the central part of the Nera River Valley, in the Umbria Region of Central Italy. The Nera River, a tributary of the Tiber River, flows across the Apennines in a deep and narrow valley. Two national roads, the SS 305 and the SS 209, and several mountain villages are located along the valley bottom. The villages and the roads are frequently affected by rock falls. On October 1997, aftershocks of the Umbria-Marche earth- quake triggered hundreds of rock falls, ranging in size from few cubic decimeters, to some tens of cubic meter. Damage was severe and the two national roads were closed for several weeks. Following the earthquake defensive measures (including scaling, rock fences, elastic fences, and artificial tunnels) were installed along the valley. These costly defensive measures were installed without any specific assessment of rock fall hazard and the associated risk. Using a 3-dimensional, spatially distributed rock falls simulation program, we have quantitatively evaluated rock fall hazard along a 20 kilo- metres section of the central part of the valley. The source areas of rock falls (i.e., the detachment zones) were identified from vertical aerial photographs and in the field. Parameters controlling the loss of energy at impact points and during rolling were ob- tained from a surface geology map prepared updating a geological map through the analysis of aerial photographs and field surveys. Maps of the expected rock fall count, a proxy for the probability of being hit by rock falls, and of the expected maximum velocity and flying height, proxies for rock fall intensity, were used to evaluate rock fall hazard. A map of the main structures (i.e., villages and single houses) and of the infrastructure (state roads and other secondary roads) was combined into a GIS with the rock fall hazard map to obtain a preliminary map of rock fall risk. The location and characteristics of the new defensive measures were compared to the rock fall hazard 1 and risk maps to evaluate their usefulness and efficacy 2

  17. Fog composition in the Central Valley of California over three decades

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herckes, P.; Marcotte, A. R.; Wang, Y.; Collett, J. L.

    2015-01-01

    Numerous fog studies have been conducted in the Central Valley of California since the 1980s, making it one of the most studied locations in the world in terms of fog chemistry. The present work reviews observational fog studies in the area and discusses overall chemical composition as well as spatial variability and temporal variability. Regionally there is a clear gradient in fog occurrence with less fog and lower density (liquid water content, LWC) fog in the southern part of the Valley (Bakersfield) compared to more northern locations like Fresno or Davis. Chemically, fogs in the southern valley have higher solute loadings and lower pH compared to more northern locations (Davis and Fresno). Overall fog chemistry is dominated in the valley by the ammonia-nitric acid-ammonium nitrate system with sulfate being a rather minor component, especially at more northern locations and in more recent years. Fog pH in recent years is consistently higher than 5, showing an absence of acid in fogs in this region. LWC values appear to have decreased over recent years (less dense fogs). An airport visibility assessment of fog frequency reveals that overall dense fogs (visibility of less than 1/4 mile) have decreased by ~ 50% over the last 30 years.

  18. Late Pleistocene deglaciation in the upper Gállego Valley, central Pyrenees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palacios, David; de Andrés, Nuria; López-Moreno, Juan I.; García-Ruiz, José M.

    2015-05-01

    Deglaciation processes in the upper Gállego Valley, central-southern Pyrenees, were studied using geomorphological mapping and 36Cl cosmogenic dating of moraine and rock glacier boulders, as well as polished bedrock. Although the precise position of the Gállego Glacier during the global last glacial maximum is not known, there is evidence that ice tongues retreated to the headwaters, which caused subdivision of the main glacier into a number of individual glaciers prior to 17 ka. A range of ages (16 to 11 ka) was found among three tributary valleys within the general trend of deglaciation. The retreat rate to cirque was estimated to be relatively rapid (approximately 5 km per ka). The mapped glacial sedimentology and geomorphology appears to support the occurrence of multiple minor advances and retreats, or periods of stasis during the late deglaciation. Geomorphological and geological differences among the tributary valleys, and error estimates associated with the results obtained, prevented unambiguous correlations of the advances with the late Pleistocene cold periods. During the latter advances, small glaciers and rock glaciers developed close to the cirque headwalls, and co-occurred under the same climatic conditions. No evidence for Holocene re-advance was found for any of the three tributary valleys.

  19. Bacillus vallismortis sp. nov., a close relative of Bacillus subtilis, isolated from soil in Death Valley, California.

    PubMed

    Roberts, M S; Nakamura, L K; Cohan, F M

    1996-04-01

    Five Bacillus strains isolated from Death Valley soil were shown to belong to a previously unidentified species, for which we propose the name Bacillus vallismortis. The type strain is strain DV1-F-3 (= NRRL B-14890). On the basis of previously published restriction digestion data, B. vallismortis is most closely related to Bacillus subtilis. At this time B. vallismortis can be distinguished from B. subtilis only by differences in whole-cell fatty acid compositions, DNA sequences, and levels of reassociation of genomic DNA. PMID:8934905

  20. Surficial Geologic Mapping Using Digital Techniques Reveals Late-Phase Basin Evolution and Role of Paleoclimate, Death Valley Junction 30' 60' Quadrangle, California and Nevada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Slate, J.; Berry, M.; Menges, C. M.

    2010-12-01

    The recently released surficial geologic map of the Death Valley Junction 30' x 60' quadrangle at 1:100,000 scale (USGS SIM 3013) was simultaneously mapped and compiled using digital photogrammetric methods. The map area covers the central part of Death Valley and adjacent mountain rangesthe Panamint Range on the west and the Funeral Mountains on the eastas well as areas east of Death Valley including some of the Amargosa Desert, the Spring Mountains, and Pahrump Valley. We mapped six alluvial units, an eolian unit, three playa or playa-related units, lacustrine beach deposits, colluvium, and marl. Interpretation of surface morphology, tone, relative height, and map pattern in air photos enabled us to differentiate among the alluvial units, which make up about 80 percent of the surficial deposits in the map area. Systematic variations in alluvial surface morphology with age permit us to map and correlate geomorphic surfaces. Surface morphology is a product of depositional and post-depositional processes. Lithologic variations across the map area influence the tone of the alluvial units. Although young alluvial units are often light-toned due to an absence or paucity of rock varnish, they may appear dark where the source rocks are dark. Lithology also influences the development of rock varnish; fine-grained or aphanitic rocks, such as quartzite or basalt, tend to become varnished more quickly than rocks such as limestone or granite. Granite commonly disaggregates to grus before becoming varnished and limestone becomes etched. Relative height (topographic position) is useful for mapping in individual drainage basins near range fronts, but basinward, especially in tectonically inactive areas, most surfaces grade to the same base level, and relative height differs little among the alluvial units. Faulting, both the magnitude and location, also affects the map pattern of alluvial units. As faulting uplifts ranges relative to the basins, streams adjust to new base levels, abandoning and incising older alluvial units, thus preserving them on the footwall block of the fault. In tectonically inactive areas, streams continue to grade to the same level or aggrade, thus progressively burying older alluvial units. Therefore, map pattern of alluvial units is an important tool to evaluate late-phase basin evolution in the Basin and Range province. Determining the age of these alluvial units enables us to examine the role of paleoclimate during deposition. Six terrestrial cosmogenic-nuclide (TCN) 36Cl depth-profile dates of unit Qai fans along the west side of Death Valley range from about 40 ka to 100 ka (with a mean age of about 65 ka) and thus post-date the marine oxygen-isotope stage (MIS) 6 cycle of Pleistocene Lake Manly, but predate the lesser, MIS 2 successor. TCN 36Cl depth-profile dating establishes the age of a lacustrine bar complex at 30 m above sea level on the north side of Hanaupah Canyon to be 130 (+75/-39) ka and correlates with a deep lake at MIS 6. This bar predates units mapped as Qai and thus provides an important stratigraphic datum.

  1. Hydrogeologic Framework and Ground Water in Basin-Fill Deposits of the Diamond Valley Flow System, Central Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tumbusch, Mary L.; Plume, Russell W.

    2006-01-01

    The Diamond Valley flow system, an area of about 3,120 square miles in central Nevada, consists of five hydrographic areas: Monitor, Antelope, Kobeh, and Diamond Valleys and Stevens Basin. Although these five areas are in a remote part of Nevada, local government officials and citizens are concerned that the water resources of the flow system eventually could be further developed for irrigation or mining purposes or potentially for municipal use outside the study area. In order to better understand the flow system, the U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with Eureka, Lander, and Nye Counties and the Nevada Division of Water Resources, is conducting a multi-phase study of the flow system. The principal aquifers of the Diamond Valley flow system are in basin-fill deposits that occupy structural basins comprised of carbonate rocks, siliciclastic sedimentary rocks, igneous intrusive rocks, and volcanic rocks. Carbonate rocks also function as aquifers, but their extent and interconnections with basin-fill aquifers are poorly understood. Ground-water flow in southern Monitor Valley is from the valley margins toward the valley axis and then northward to a large area of discharge by evapotranspiration (ET) that is formed south of a group of unnamed hills near the center of the valley. Ground-water flow from northern Monitor Valley, Antelope Valley, and northern and western parts of Kobeh Valley converges to an area of ground-water discharge by ET in central and eastern Kobeh Valley. Prior to irrigation development in the 1960s, ground-water flow in Diamond Valley was from valley margins toward the valley axis and then northward to a large discharge area at the north end of the valley. Stevens Basin is a small upland basin with internal drainage and is not connected with other parts of the flow system. After 40 years of irrigation pumping, a large area of ground-water decline has developed in southern Diamond Valley around the irrigated area. In this part of Diamond Valley, flow is from valley margins toward the irrigated area. In northern Diamond Valley, flow appears to remain generally northward to the large discharge area. Subsurface flow through mountain ranges has been identified from Garden Valley (outside the study area) through the Sulphur Springs Range to Diamond Valley and from southeastern Antelope Valley through the Fish Creek Range to Little Smoky Valley (outside the study area). In both cases, the flow is probably through carbonate rocks. Ground-water levels in the Diamond Valley flow system have changed during the past 40 years. These changes are the result of pumpage for irrigation, municipal, domestic, and mining uses, mostly in southern Diamond Valley, and annual and longer-term variations in precipitation in undeveloped parts of the study area. A large area of ground-water decline that underlies an area about 10 miles wide and 20 miles long has developed in the basin-fill aquifer of southern Diamond Valley. Water levels beneath the main part of the irrigated area have declined as much as 90 feet. In undeveloped parts of the study area, annual water-level fluctuations generally have been no more than a few feet.

  2. Rapid uplift and crustal growth in extensional environments: An isotopic study from the Death Valley region, California

    SciTech Connect

    Asmerom, Y.; Snow, J.K.; Holm, D.K.; Jacobsen, S.B.; Wernicke, B.P. ); Lux, D.R. )

    1990-03-01

    The Willow Spring Diorite, in the Black Mountains of the central Death Valley extended terrain, yields a U-Pb zircon age of 11.6 {plus minus} 0.2 Ma. {sup 40}Ar-{sup 39}Ar analyses of hornblende and U-Pb analyses of sphene from this sample give ages of about 10 Ma, indicating that the batholith remained above about 500 C for about 1.5 m.y. after crystallization. Geologic relations indicate that the diorite was exposed to erosion by about 5 Ma, bracketing the evolution of the diorite within the time between onset of extension and uplift of the Black Mountain crustal block. Initial {sup 87}Sr/{sup 86}Sr ratios range from 0.7060 (mafic diorite) to 0.7083 (felsic diorite) in samples collected from an area 200 x 100 m. These data, combined with structural and petrologic evidence, suggest that the batholith represents a rare view of a mid-crustal zone of mixing between mantle-derived magma and crustal material, often suggested to exist on the basis of observations of intermediate volcanic rocks. The Black Mountains may therefore expose a cross section through a continental rift magmatic system, from partially contaminated mafic to intermediate intrusive rocks in the deep crust up to their volcanic equivalents. The relatively low initial {sup 87}Sr/{sup 86}Sr and high {epsilon}{sub Nd} ({minus}1.4) of the diorite, which is within Proterozoic basement with {epsilon}{sub Nd} {approximately}{minus}18, is consistent with significant amounts of mantle input in continental rifts inferred from geophysical data and measurement of He isotopic ratios. Such additions to the crust in continental rights may represent a significant process of crustal growth. Furthermore, the emplacement of igneous bodies with a large mantle component may help reconcile the large crustal pull apart in the Basin and Range (in excess of 140 km) with the fact that the crust still has as normal thickness of about 30-35 km.

  3. Geothermal energy from deep sedimentary basins: The Valley of Mexico (Central Mexico)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lenhardt, Nils; Götz, Annette E.

    2015-04-01

    The geothermal potential of the Valley of Mexico has not been addressed in the past, although volcaniclastic settings in other parts of the world contain promising target reservoir formations. A first assessment of the geothermal potential of the Valley of Mexico is based on thermophysical data gained from outcrop analogues, covering all lithofacies types, and evaluation of groundwater temperature and heat flow values from literature. Furthermore, the volumetric approach of Muffler and Cataldi (1978) leads to a first estimation of ca. 4000 TWh (14.4 EJ) of power generation from Neogene volcanic rocks within the Valley of Mexico. Comparison with data from other sedimentary basins where deep geothermal reservoirs are identified shows the high potential of the Valley of Mexico for future geothermal reservoir utilization. The mainly low permeable lithotypes may be operated as stimulated systems, depending on the fracture porosity in the deeper subsurface. In some areas also auto-convective thermal water circulation might be expected and direct heat use without artificial stimulation becomes reasonable. Thermophysical properties of tuffs and siliciclastic rocks qualify them as promising target horizons (Lenhardt and Götz, 2015). The here presented data serve to identify exploration areas and are valuable attributes for reservoir modelling, contributing to (1) a reliable reservoir prognosis, (2) the decision of potential reservoir stimulation, and (3) the planning of long-term efficient reservoir utilization. References Lenhardt, N., Götz, A.E., 2015. Geothermal reservoir potential of volcaniclastic settings: The Valley of Mexico, Central Mexico. Renewable Energy. [in press] Muffler, P., Cataldi, R., 1978. Methods for regional assessment of geothermal resources. Geothermics, 7, 53-89.

  4. Tributary-stream infiltration in Marsh Creek Valley, north-central Pennsylvania

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, John H.

    1991-01-01

    The geohydrology of infiltration from five tributary streams along a 3.6-mile reach of Marsh Creek valley in north-central Pennsylvania was investigated during 1983-85. Marsh Creek valley is underlain by up to 100 feet of stratified drift that overlies Devonian bedrock. The stratified drift is overlain by up to 30 feet of alluvial-fan deposits near the tributary streams. Four of the five tributary streams lose large amounts of water to the stratified-drift aquifer in Marsh Creek valley. Along reaches away from the valley wall, infiltration losses from the streams averaged about 2 cubic feet per second per 1,000 feet of wetted channel length. Estimated hydraulic conductivity of the deposits near these streams ranges from 31 to 100 feet per day and averages 61 feet per day. Silty beds of lower permeability near the streams may significantly affect infiltration. The low permeability of the sediments near the fifth stream, which probably consist largely of fine-grained alluvium and swamp deposits, may account for the lack of infiltration losses along this stream. Tributary-stream infiltration accounted for more than 70 percent of the estimated recharge to the stratified-drift aquifer along the reach investigated during water year 1985, in which annual precipitation was below average. The sources of recharge and their estimated rates were: (1) direct infiltration of precipitation on the valley, 1.7 cubic feet per second; (2) unchanneled runoff and ground-water inflow from the uplands, 2.7 cubic feet per second; and (3) tributary-stream infiltration from Asaph Run, 3.7 cubic feet per second, Straight Run, 3.7 cubic feet per second, Dantz Run, 1.2 cubic feet per second, and Canada Run, 1.9 cubic feet per second. The temporal variation in recharge from tributary-stream infiltration greatly affects drawdowns caused by pumping from the wellfield at the National Fisheries Research and Development Laboratory near Straight Run.

  5. Hydrology of Prairie Dog Creek Valley, Norton Dam to state line, north-central Kansas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stullken, L.E.

    1984-01-01

    Development of water resources has been a major factor in the economy of Prairie Dog Creek Valley in north-central Kansas. Releases from Norton Reservoir to the Almena Irrigation District averaged 6,900 acre-feet per year during 1967-76. The number of irrigation wells increased from 4 to 147 during 1947-78. Ground water in the valley is derived mostly from the alluvial aquifer. The effects of irrigation on the aquifer are indicated by water-level changes. The water in storage increased from 130,000 to 136,000 acre-feet during 1947-78 due to recharge from surface-water irrigation. A steady-state model of the aquifer prior to irrigation (1947) indicated that most recharge was from precipitation (88 percent) and most discharge was to streams (54 percent) and reparian transpiration (26 percent). Although aquifer storage increased in this area, storage generally decreased in other areas of western Kansas. (USGS)

  6. Simulation of Net Infiltration and Potential Recharge Using a Distributed-Parameter Watershed Model of the Death Valley Region, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    J.A. Hevesi; A.L. Flint; L.E. Flint

    2003-09-30

    This report presents the development and application of the distributed-parameter watershed model, INFILv3, for estimating the temporal and spatial distribution of net infiltration and potential recharge in the Death Valley region, Nevada and California. The estimates of net infiltration quantify the downward drainage of water across the lower boundary of the root zone and are used to indicate potential recharge under variable climate conditions and drainage basin characteristics. Spatial variability in recharge in the Death Valley region likely is high owing to large differences in precipitation, potential evapotranspiration, bedrock permeability, soil thickness, vegetation characteristics, and contributions to recharge along active stream channels. The quantity and spatial distribution of recharge representing the effects of variable climatic conditions and drainage basin characteristics on recharge are needed to reduce uncertainty in modeling ground-water flow. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Energy, developed a regional saturated-zone ground-water flow model of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system to help evaluate the current hydrogeologic system and the potential effects of natural or human-induced changes. Although previous estimates of recharge have been made for most areas of the Death Valley region, including the area defined by the boundary of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, the uncertainty of these estimates is high, and the spatial and temporal variability of the recharge in these basins has not been quantified.

  7. Estimated Ground-Water Withdrawals from the Death Valley Regional Flow System, Nevada and California, 1913-98

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Moreo, Michael T.; Halford, Keith J.; La Camera, Richard J.; Laczniak, Randell J.

    2003-01-01

    Ground-water withdrawals from 1913 through 1998 from the Death Valley regional flow system have been compiled to support a regional, three-dimensional, transient ground-water flow model. Withdrawal locations and depths of production intervals were estimated and associated errors were reported for 9,300 wells. Withdrawals were grouped into three categories: mining, public-supply, and commercial water use; domestic water use; and irrigation water use. In this report, groupings were based on the method used to estimate pumpage. Cumulative ground-water withdrawals from 1913 through 1998 totaled 3 million acre-feet, most of which was used to irrigate alfalfa. Annual withdrawal for irrigation ranged from 80 to almost 100 percent of the total pumpage. About 75,000 acre-feet was withdrawn for irrigation in 1998. Annual irrigation withdrawals generally were estimated as the product of irrigated acreage and application rate. About 320 fields totaling 11,000 acres were identified in six hydrographic areas. Annual application rates for high water-use crops ranged from 5 feet in Penoyer Valley to 9 feet in Pahrump Valley. The uncertainty in the estimates of ground-water withdrawals was attributed primarily to the uncertainty of application rate estimates. Annual ground-water withdrawal was estimated at about 90,000 acre-feet in 1998 with an assigned uncertainty bounded by 60,000 to 130,000 acre-feet.

  8. Mesozoic burial, Mesozoic and Cenozoic exhumation of the Funeral Mountains core complex, Death Valley, Southeastern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beyene, Mengesha Assefa

    2011-12-01

    The Funeral Mountains of Death Valley National Park, CA, provide an opportunity to date metamorphism resulting from crustal shortening and subsequent episodic extensional events in the Sevier hinterland. It was not clear whether crustal shortening and thus peak temperature metamorphism in the hinterland of the Sevier-Laramide orogenic wedge have occurred whether in Late Jurassic, Early Cretaceous, Late Cretaceous or somewhere between. Particularly ambiguous is the timing of crustal shortening in the deep levels of the hinterland of the Sevier belt, now manifest in the metamorphic core complexes, and how and when these middle-to-lower crustal rocks were exhumed. A 6-point garnet and a whole rock Savillax isochron from middle greenschist facies pelitic schist of the southeastern Funeral Mountains core complex yields an age of 162.1 +/- 5.8 Ma (2sigma). Composite PT paths determined from growth-zoned garnets from the same samples show a nearly isothermal pressure increase of ˜2 kbar at ˜490°C, suggesting thrust burial at 162.1 +/- 5.8 Ma. A second sample of Johnnie Formation from the comparatively higher metamorphic grade area to the northwest (East of Chloride Cliff) yielded an age of 172.9 +/- 4.9 Ma (2sigma) suggesting an increase of thrust burial age towards the higher grade rocks (northwest part of the core complex), consistent with paleo-depth interpretation and metamorphic grade. 40Ar/ 39Ar muscovite ages along footwall of the Boundary Canyon detachment fault and intra-core Chloride Cliff shear zone exhibit significant 40Ar/39Ar muscovite age differences. For samples from the immediate footwall of BCD, the pattern of ages decreasing toward the northwest is consistent with differences in depth of metamorphism, and for Late Cretaceous, top-to-northwest exhumation by motion along the precursor BCD; consistent with mesoscopic and microscopic kinematic studies. Samples from the footwall of the structurally-lower Chloride Cliff shear zone yield Tertiary 40Ar/39Ar muscovite ages (53 to 29 Ma) and interpreted to reflect a more youthful age of extensional ductile deformation confined along the CCSZ. (U-Th)/He analyses on detrital zircon (ZrHe) from quartzite samples collected along the footwall of the BCD along the same transect as the 40Ar/39Ar samples revealed inception of the Miocene BCD at ˜10-11 Ma. A slip rate of 8.5 +/-2.0 km/Ma was determined excluding three analyses that significantly deviate from the regression line. This study indicate that the core rocks of the Funeral Mountains were buried during Late Jurassic, and then slowly exhumed, probably by erosion between 152 and 90 Ma, and then more rapidly exhumed initially by movement along the precursor of the BCD during Late Cretaceous. Following a hiatus of tectonic activity, exhumation resumed during late early Tertiary with deformation likely confined along discrete ductile shear zones. The latest period of motion along the BCD and thus the final exhumation of metamorphosed core rocks in the Funeral Mountains has initiated ˜11-10 Ma and likely ceased around ˜6 Ma, consistent with ages of motions of detachment faults and exhumation of footwall rocks in the surrounding mountain ranges.

  9. Hydrostructural maps of the Death Valley regional flow system, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Potter, C.J.; Sweetkind, D.S.; Dickerson, R.P.; Killgore, M.L.

    2002-01-01

    The locations of principal faults and structural zones that may influence ground-water flow were compiled in support of a three-dimensional ground-water model for the Death Valley regional flow system (DVRFS), which covers 80,000 square km in southwestern Nevada and southeastern California. Faults include Neogene extensional and strike-slip faults and pre-Tertiary thrust faults. Emphasis was given to characteristics of faults and deformed zones that may have a high potential for influencing hydraulic conductivity. These include: (1) faulting that results in the juxtaposition of stratigraphic units with contrasting hydrologic properties, which may cause ground-water discharge and other perturbations in the flow system; (2) special physical characteristics of the fault zones, such as brecciation and fracturing, that may cause specific parts of the zone to act either as conduits or as barriers to fluid flow; (3) the presence of a variety of lithologies whose physical and deformational characteristics may serve to impede or enhance flow in fault zones; (4) orientation of a fault with respect to the present-day stress field, possibly influencing hydraulic conductivity along the fault zone; and (5) faults that have been active in late Pleistocene or Holocene time and areas of contemporary seismicity, which may be associated with enhanced permeabilities. The faults shown on maps A and B are largely from Workman and others (in press), and fit one or more of the following criteria: (1) faults that are more than 10 km in map length; (2) faults with more than 500 m of displacement; and (3) faults in sets that define a significant structural fabric that characterizes a particular domain of the DVRFS. The following fault types are shown: Neogene normal, Neogene strike-slip, Neogene low-angle normal, pre-Tertiary thrust, and structural boundaries of Miocene calderas. We have highlighted faults that have late Pleistocene to Holocene displacement (Piety, 1996). Areas of thick Neogene basin-fill deposits (thicknesses 1-2 km, 2-3 km, and >3 km) are shown on map A, based on gravity anomalies and depth-to-basement modeling by Blakely and others (1999). We have interpreted the positions of faults in the subsurface, generally following the interpretations of Blakely and others (1999). Where geophysical constraints are not present, the faults beneath late Tertiary and Quaternary cover have been extended based on geologic reasoning. Nearly all of these concealed faults are shown with continuous solid lines on maps A and B, in order to provide continuous structures for incorporation into the hydrogeologic framework model (HFM). Map A also shows the potentiometric surface, regional springs (25-35 degrees Celsius, D'Agnese and others, 1997), and cold springs (Turner and others, 1996).

  10. InSAR Reveals a Potpourri of Deformation Signals in the Yucca Mountain -- Amargosa Valley -- Death Valley Region, Southwestern Nevada/Southeastern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Katzenstein, K. W.; Bell, J. W.

    2005-12-01

    InSAR studies have revealed a variety of surface deformation signals attributed to several causes in the Yucca Mountain -- Amargosa Valley -- Death Valley region. This study utilizes 26 ERS 1 and 2 scenes to produce 34 interferometric pairs that cover the period of 1992 - 2000. Prominent signals that have been previously studied include the 1992 Little Skull Mountain Earthquake and groundwater subsidence in the Pahrump Valley (Lohman et al., 2002, and Utley, 2005). Several subsidence signals (2.5 -- 3.5 cm) present within Amargosa Valley represent aquifer response in close proximity to local groundwater withdrawal. Observed groundwater level declines in the vicinity of the subsidence bowls are also present. However, signals near Amargosa Flat and Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge appear to be a more complex regional aquifer response related either to distant groundwater use or other hydrologic processes related to the abundant spring activity in the area as groundwater levels have remained fairly steady in these regions. A subsidence signal at Frenchman Flat, within the Nevada Test Site, shows approximately 2 cm of subsidence with the majority occurring between 1998 and 2000. Groundwater use in this area was actually lower during this time period than during the previous six years covered by this study, and monitoring wells suggest a relatively constant depth to groundwater with no notable trend up or down. This suggests another mechanism behind the subsidence, including the possibility that three nuclear blast centers located within the subsidence bowl have altered groundwater recharge conditions in the area. The signal with the largest magnitude is related to mining activity at the Bullfrog Mine located west of Beatty, NV. At this location, as much as 8 cm of subsidence, occurring between 1995 and 2000, is centered on the eastern edge of the mine site and extends into the bedrock to the northeast. GPS data (Bennett et al, 2003 and Wernicke et al, 2004) suggest that a velocity contrast of approximately 3.5 mm/yr exists between the Yucca Mountain Block and the Furnace Creek Fault in eastern Death Valley. Unit vector values for the SAR data suggest that this velocity contrast translates to a line of sight (LOS) change of approximately 0.90 -- 0.95 mm/year. Therefore, over the eight year study period, a total LOS change of approximately 0.7 -- 0.8 cm is theorized. Although this LOS change is large enough to be detected using InSAR, this study was unable to detect and locate a signal that could be confidently attributed to this velocity contrast. This is likely due to the wide aperture over which the shear is acting, as well as topographic interference inherent in InSAR studies in regions of variable relief. This study was supported by NASA grant NAG 13 -- 02017.

  11. Geochemistry of Mesozoic plutons, southern Death Valley region, California: Insights into the origin of Cordilleran interior magmatism

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ramo, O.T.; Calzia, J.P.; Kosunen, P.J.

    2002-01-01

    Mesozoic granitoid plutons in the southern Death Valley region of southeastern California reveal substantial compositional and isotopic diversity for Mesozoic magmatism in the southwestern US Cordillera. Jurassic plutons of the region are mainly calc-alkaline mafic granodiorites with ??Ndi of -5 to -16, 87Sr/86Sri of 0.707-0.726, and 206Pb/204Pbi of 17.5-20.0. Cretaceous granitoids of the region are mainly monzogranites with ??Ndi of -6 to -19, 87Sr/86Sri of 0.707-0.723, and 206Pb/204Pbi of 17.4-18.6. The granitoids were generated by mixing of mantle-derived mafic melts and pre-existing crust - some of the Cretaceous plutons represent melting of Paleoproterozoic crust that, in the southern Death Valley region, is exceptionally heterogeneous. A Cretaceous gabbro on the southern flank of the region has an unuasually juvenile composition (??Ndi -3.2, 87Sr/86Sri 0.7060). Geographic position of the Mesozoic plutons and comparison with Cordillera plutonism in the Mojave Desert show that the Precambrian lithosphere (craton margin) in the eastern Mojave Desert region may consists of two crustal blocks separated by a more juvenile terrane.

  12. Slip Rates, Recurrence Intervals and Earthquake Event Magnitudes for the southern Black Mountains Fault Zone, southern Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fronterhouse Sohn, M.; Knott, J. R.; Bowman, D. D.

    2005-12-01

    The normal-oblique Black Mountain Fault zone (BMFZ) is part of the Death Valley fault system. Strong ground-motion generated by earthquakes on the BMFZ poses a serious threat to the Las Vegas, NV area (pop. ~1,428,690), the Death Valley National Park (max. pop. ~20,000) and Pahrump, NV (pop. 30,000). Fault scarps offset Holocene alluvial-fan deposits along most of the 80-km length of the BMFZ. However, slip rates, recurrence intervals, and event magnitudes for the BMFZ are poorly constrained due to a lack of age control. Also, Holocene scarp heights along the BMFZ range from <1 m to >6 m suggesting that geomorphic sections have different earthquake histories. Along the southernmost section, the BMFZ steps basinward preserving three post-late Pleistocene fault scarps. Surveys completed with a total station theodolite show scarp heights of 5.5, 5.0 and 2 meters offsetting the late Pleistocene, early to middle Holocene, to middle-late Holocene surfaces, respectively. Regression plots of vertical offset versus maximum scarp angle suggest event ages of <10 - 2 ka with a post-late Pleistocene slip rate of 0.1mm/yr to 0.3 mm/yr and recurrence of <3300 years/event. Regression equations for the estimated geomorphically constrained rupture length of the southernmost section and surveyed event displacements provides estimated moment magnitudes (Mw) between 6.6 and 7.3 for the BMFZ.

  13. Drought Analyses of the California Central Valley Surface-Groundwater-Conveyance System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, N. L.; Dale, L. L.; Vicuna, S. D.

    2006-12-01

    Historically, California has experienced periods of long drought conditions. Isotopic analyses have indicated that naturally occurring droughts were most pronounced during the 15th century, when S.F. Delta inflows were less than 50 percent of the long term mean flows. During the last 150 years there has been an above average mean flow concurrent with the onset of agricultural development. More importantly, is the advancement of the California water conveyance system and irrigation farming that came into existence during the latter half of the 20th century. This was during a period of historically wet conditions, and until recently, water resource managers have relied on stationary conditions as part of their management strategy. To provide water resources decision makers with the tools needed for better understanding the consequences of persistent droughts, we have begun a series of numerical investigations to determine system behavior and economic impacts under a range of conditions. Our investigations of California Central Valley impacts of sustained droughts are based on a series of specified reductions (10 to 70 percent) in net surface flows for periods ranging from 10 to 60 years and applied to the California Department of Water Resources' California Central Valley Simulation Model (C2VSIM). This simplified methodology represents a means to evaluate the impacts of reductions in net surface flow from reservoirs. The goals of this study are to understand how reductions in surface water are handled within C2VSIM, how groundwater pumping compensates the reduced inflow, to what degree the water table is reduced, and how this system recovers. Pumping costs will also be calculated for each case. Finally, an economic analysis of the impacts on agriculture as related to changes in farming practices that may be needed to maintain a sustainable agricultural economy in the Central Valley under the range of imposed drought conditions is presented.

  14. Climate Change Impacts on Water Resources and Irrigated Agriculture in the Central Valley of California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winter, J.; Young, C. A.; Azarderakhsh, M.; Ruane, A. C.; Rosenzweig, C.

    2013-12-01

    Agricultural productivity is strongly dependent on the availability of water, necessitating accurate projections of water resources, the allocation of water resources across competing sectors, and the effects of insufficient water resources on crops to assess the impacts of climate change on agricultural productivity. To explore the interface of water and agriculture in California's Central Valley, the Decision Support System for Agrotechnology Transfer (DSSAT) crop model was coupled to the Water Evaluation and Planning System (WEAP) water resources model, deployed over the region, and run using both historical and future climate scenarios. This coupling brings water supply constraints to DSSAT and sophisticated agricultural water use, management, and diagnostics to WEAP. A 30-year simulation of WEAP-DSSAT forced using a spatially interpolated observational dataset was run from 1980-2009. Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Surface Resistance and Evapotranspiration (MOD16) and Terrestrial Observation and Prediction System (TOPS) data were used to evaluate WEAP-DSSAT evapotranspiration calculations. Overall WEAP-DSSAT reasonably captures the seasonal cycle of observed evapotranspiration, but some catchments contain significant biases. Future climate scenarios were constructed by adjusting the spatially interpolated observational dataset with North American Regional Climate Change Assessment Program differences between future (2050-2069) and historical (1980-1999) regional climate model simulations of precipitation and temperature. Generally, within the Central Valley temperatures warm by approximately 2°C, precipitation remains constant, and crop water use efficiency increases. The overall impacts of future climate on irrigated agricultural yields varies across the Central Valley and is highly dependent on crop, water resources demand assumptions, and agricultural management.

  15. 76 FR 56905 - The Central Valley Project, the California-Oregon Transmission Project, the Pacific Alternating...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-09-14

    ...The Deputy Secretary of Energy confirmed and approved Rate Order No. WAPA-156 and Rate Schedules CV-F13, CPP-2, CV-T3, CV-NWT5, COTP-T3, PACI-T3, CV-TPT7, CV-UUP1, CV-SPR4, CV-SUR4, CV-RFS4, CV-EID4, and CV-GID1, placing formula rates for power, transmission, and ancillary services for the Central Valley Project (CVP), transmission service on the California-Oregon Transmission Project (COTP),......

  16. Quantitative investigations of geologic surfaces utilizing airborne visible/infrared imaging spectrometer (AVIRIS) and polarimetric radar (AIRSAR) data for Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kierein-Young, Kathryn S.; Kruse, Fred A.

    1991-01-01

    Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) and polarimetric radar (AIRSAR) data were collected over Death Valley, California, USA, in September 1989. These two data sets were used to quantitatively characterize both the mineralogy and surface structure of the valley floor. Field mapping and characterization of the salt flats across the valley identified 16 separate units. The AVIRIS data were calibrated using the 'empirical line' method, and spectra extracted for the 16 units. A water vapor map was generated from the AVIRIS data and showed spatial variations in its distribution due to evaporation of surface water. Unmixing of the 16 spectral units produced maps of endmember abundance.

  17. Aeromagnetic maps with geologic interpretations for the Tularosa Valley, south-central New Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bath, G.D.

    1977-01-01

    An aeromagnetic survey of the Tularosa Valley in south-central New Mexico has provided information on the igneous rocks that are buried beneath alluvium and colluvium. The data, compiled as residual magnetic anomalies, are shown on twelve maps at a scale of 1:62,500. Measurements of magnetic properties of samples collected in the valley and adjacent highlands give a basis for identifying the anomaly-producing rocks. Precambrian rocks of the crystalline basement have weakly induced magnetizations and produce anomalies having low magnetic intensities and low magnetic gradients. Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic intrusive rocks have moderately to strongly induced magnetizations. Precambrian rocks produce prominent magnetic anomalies having higher amplitudes and higher gradients. The Quaternary basalt has a strong remanent magnetization of normal polarity and produces narrow anomalies having high-magnetic gradients. Interpretations include an increase in elevation to the top of buried Precambrian rock in the northern part of the valley, a large Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic intrusive near Alamogordo, and a southern extension of the intrusive rock exposed in the Jarilla Mountains. Evidence for the southern extension comes from a quantitative analysis of the magnetic anomalies..

  18. Geomorphological analysis of the Lower Tagus Valley Fault Zone, Central Portugal.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Canora-Catalan, Carolina; Besana-Ostman, Glenda; Vilanova, Susana; Fonseca, Joao; Pinto, Luis; Domingues, Ana; Narciso, Joao; Pinheiro, Patricia

    2013-04-01

    The Lower Tagus Valley Fault Zone (LTVFZ) is a northeast-southwest trending tectonic structure located within the Lower Tagus Valley (LTV), in central Portugal associated with at least two historical events: the 1909 Mw 6.0-6.2 Benavente earthquake and the 1531 Mw 6.9 earthquake. Recent investigations indicate that the relatively linear valley associated with the Lower Tagus River is controlled by active faults in varying geometry and slip rates. Based on mapped traces, LTVFZ is about 80 kilometers long and transects Miocene to late Quaternary deposit. The east and west strands of the fault zone may have different level of activity based on the variable clarity of mapped morphological expressions. In this work, new fault strands were identified using aerial photos on eastern side of LTV. These eastern faults has a trend that almost parallel those active traces previously mapped by Besana-Ostman et al., 2012 on the western side of the valley. The newly-mapped faults has left-lateral strike-slip movements and can be separated into two segments based on the kinematic indicators like offsets on river, ridges, and valley together with fluvial terraces displacements. Until this study, no Holocene fault scarps have been identified on the eastern portion of the LTV. Quaternary activity of faults can be assessed by the evaluation of morphometric indexes. In case of LTVFZ, the most characteristic landforms are fault-generated mountain fronts and valleys where the mountain front sinuosity index Smf is measured for fault activity evaluation. Through this morphometric index, mountain fronts are classified into Class I (Smf 1-1.4); active, Class II (Smf 1.4-2.5); intermediate, and Class III (Smf >2.5); inactive. In this paper, the Smf is calculated for the western and eastern sides of LTV as 1.3 and 1.8, respectively. These Smf values indicate that the western mountain front of the LTV corresponds to Class I while the eastern mountain front is Class II. However, considering the possible two segments of the eastern fault, the index of the northern segment produced 1.35 that indicates an active mountain front (Smf class I). This study, although preliminary, established additional active traces for the LTVFZ with the potential to generate M6 or greater earthquakes. This is very important because the LTV is the most populated and developed region of SW Iberia with the highest level of seismic hazard.

  19. Late Cenozoic sedimentation and volcanism during transtensional deformation in Wingate Wash and the Owlshead Mountains, Death Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Luckow, H.G.; Pavlis, T.L.; Serpa, L.F.; Guest, B.; Wagner, D.L.; Snee, L.; Hensley, T.M.; Korjenkov, A.

    2005-01-01

    New 1:24,000 scale mapping, geochemical analyses of volcanic rocks, and Ar/Ar and tephrochronology analyses of the Wingate Wash, northern Owlshead Mountain and Southern Panamint Mountain region document a complex structural history constrained by syntectonic volcanism and sedimentation. In this study, the region is divided into five structural domains with distinct, but related, histories: (1) The southern Panamint domain is a structurally intact, gently south-tilted block dominated by a middle Miocene volcanic center recognized as localized hypabyssal intrusives surrounded by proximal facies pyroclastic rocks. This Miocene volcanic sequence is an unusual alkaline volcanic assemblage ranging from trachybasalt to rhyolite, but dominated by trachyandesite. The volcanic rocks are overlain in the southwestern Panamint Mountains by a younger (Late Miocene?) fanglomerate sequence. (2) An upper Wingate Wash domain is characterized by large areas of Quaternary cover and complex overprinting of older structure by Quaternary deformation. Quaternary structures record ???N-S shortening concurrent with ???E-W extension accommodated by systems of strike-slip and thrust faults. (3) A central Wingate Wash domain contains a complex structural history that is closely tied to the stratigraphic evolution. In this domain, a middle Miocene volcanic package contains two distinct assemblages; a lower sequence dominated by alkaline pyroclastic rocks similar to the southern Panamint sequence and an upper basaltic sequence of alkaline basalt and basanites. This volcanic sequence is in turn overlain by a coarse clastic sedimentary sequence that records the unroofing of adjacent ranges and development of ???N-S trending, west-tilted fault blocks. We refer to this sedimentary sequence as the Lost Lake assemblage. (4) The lower Wingate Wash/northern Owlshead domain is characterized by a gently north-dipping stratigraphic sequence with an irregular unconformity at the base developed on granitic basement. The unconformity is locally overlain by channelized deposits of older Tertiary(?) red conglomerate, some of which predate the onset of extensive volcanism, but in most of the area is overlain by a moderately thick package of Middle Miocene trachybasalt, trachyandesitic, ash flows, lithic tuff, basaltic cinder, basanites, and dacitic pyroclastic, debris, and lahar flows with localized exposures of sedimentary rocks. The upper part of the Miocene stratigraphic sequence in this domain is comprised of coarse grained-clastic sediments that are apparently middle Miocene based on Ar/Ar dating of interbedded volcanic rocks. This sedimentary sequence, however, is lithologically indistinguishable from the structurally adjacent Late Miocene Lost Lake assemblage and a stratigraphically overlying Plio-Pleistocene alluvial fan; a relationship that handicaps tracing structures through this domain. This domain is also structurally complex and deformed by a series of northwest-southeast-striking, east-dipping, high-angle oblique, sinistral, normal faults that are cut by left-lateral strike-slip faults. The contact between the southern Panamint domain and the adjacent domains is a complex fault system that we interpret as a zone of Late Miocene distributed sinistral slip that is variably overprinted in different portions of the mapped area. The net sinistral slip across the Wingate Wash fault system is estimated at 7-9 km, based on offset of Proterozoic Crystal Springs Formation beneath the middle Miocene unconformity to as much as 15 km based on offset volcanic facies in Middle Miocene rocks. To the south of Wingate Wash, the northern Owlshead Mountains are also cut by a sinistral, northwest-dipping, oblique normal fault, (referred to as the Filtonny Fault) with significant slip that separates the Lower Wingate Wash and central Owlshead domains. The Filtonny Fault may represent a young conjugate fault to the dextral Southern Death Valley fault system and may be the northwest

  20. A guide for using the transient ground-water flow model of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Blainey, Joan B.; Faunt, Claudia C.; Hill, Mary C.

    2006-01-01

    This report is a guide for executing numerical simulations with the transient ground-water flow model of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California using the U.S. Geological Survey modular finite-difference ground-water flow model, MODFLOW-2000. Model inputs, including observations of hydraulic head, discharge, and boundary flows, are summarized. Modification of the DVRFS transient ground-water model is discussed for two common uses of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system model: predictive pumping scenarios that extend beyond the end of the model simulation period (1998), and model simulations with only steady-state conditions.

  1. A Guide for Using the Transient Ground-Water Flow Model of the Death Valley Regional Ground-Water Flow System, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    Joan B. Blainey; Claudia C. Faunt, and Mary C. Hill

    2006-05-16

    This report is a guide for executing numerical simulations with the transient ground-water flow model of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California using the U.S. Geological Survey modular finite-difference ground-water flow model, MODFLOW-2000. Model inputs, including observations of hydraulic head, discharge, and boundary flows, are summarized. Modification of the DVRFS transient ground-water model is discussed for two common uses of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system model: predictive pumping scenarios that extend beyond the end of the model simulation period (1998), and model simulations with only steady-state conditions.

  2. Paleoseismic results of the east strand of the Lower Tagus Valley Fault Zone, Central Portugal.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Canora, Carolina; Vilanova, Susana; Besana-Ostman, Glenda; Heleno, Sandra; Fonseca, Joao; Domingues, Ana; Pinheiro, Patricia; Pinto, Luis

    2014-05-01

    The Lower Tagus Valley Fault Zone (LTVFZ) is a northeast-southwest trending tectonic structure located within the Lower Tagus Valley (LTV), in central Portugal associated with at least two historical events: the 1909 Mw 6.0-6.2 Benavente earthquake and the 1531 Mw 6.9 earthquake. Recent investigations indicate that the relatively linear valley associated with the Lower Tagus River is controlled by active faults in varying geometry and slip rates. Based on mapped traces, LTVFZ is about 80 kilometers long and transects Miocene to Holocene deposit. The east and west strands of the fault zone may have different level of activity based on the variable clarity of mapped morphological expressions. In recent studies new fault strands were identified using aerial photos and field survey on eastern side of LTV. These eastern faults have a trend that almost parallel those active traces previously mapped by Besana-Ostman et al., 2012 on the western side of the valley. Quaternary activity of this fault deforms fluvial terraces and produces morphological features related to left-lateral strike-slip movement like river offsets. In this work we present the results of the first paleoseismic analysis carried out on this strand of the fault. Trenching studies shows that surface rupture events have occurred affecting Tagus fluvial terraces. The geometry of faulting exposed in the trench provides valuable insights into the kinematics of the fault, and provides a preliminary minimum net slip rate. New relative ages of the deformation are established on preliminary trenching results, and recurrence intervals will be determined upon receipt of results of sample processing for C14 dating. The aim of this work is to contribute with new data to parameterize the paleoseismic activity of this active fault in order to be included in the future seismic hazard assessments. Further studies are proposed and underway to characterize the LTVFZ, including high-resolution LIDAR images analysis, more active fault mapping and paleoseismic excavations.

  3. Searching for evidence of changes in extreme rainfall indices in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh, Alemayehu; Bewket, Woldeamlak; Keesstra, Saskia; Stroosnijder, Leo

    2016-02-01

    Extreme rainfall events have serious implications for economic sectors with a close link to climate such as agriculture and food security. This holds true in the Central Rift Valley (CRV) of Ethiopia where communities rely on highly climate-sensitive rainfed subsistence farming for livelihoods. This study investigates changes in ten extreme rainfall indices over a period of 40 years (1970-2009) using 14 meteorological stations located in the CRV. The CRV consists of three landscape units: the valley floor, the escarpments, and the highlands all of which are considered in our data analysis. The Belg (March-May) and Kiremt (June-September) seasons are also considered in the analysis. The Mann-Kendall test was used to detect trends of the rainfall indices. The results indicated that at the annual time scale, more than half (57 %) of the stations showed significant trends in total wet-day precipitation (PRCPTOT) and heavy precipitation days (R10mm). Only 7-35 % of stations showed significant trends, for the other rainfall indices. Spatially, the valley floor received increasing annual rainfall while the escarpments and the highlands received decreasing annual rainfall over the last 40 years. During Belg, 50 % of the stations showed significant increases in the maximum number of consecutive dry days (CDD) in all parts of the CRV. However, most other rainfall indices during Belg showed no significant changes. During Kiremt, considering both significant and non-significant trends, almost all rainfall indices showed an increasing trend in the valley floor and a decreasing trend in the escarpment and highlands. During Belg and Kiremt, the CDD generally showed increasing tendency in the CRV.

  4. Spatial and seasonal variability of base flow in the Verde Valley, central Arizona, 2007 and 2011

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Garner, Bradley D.; Bills, Donald J.

    2012-01-01

    Synoptic base-flow surveys were conducted on streams in the Verde Valley, central Arizona, in June 2007 and February 2011 by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the Verde River Basin Partnership, the Town of Clarkdale, and Yavapai County. These surveys, also known as seepage runs, measured streamflow under base-flow conditions at many locations over a short period of time. Surveys were conducted on a segment of the Verde River that flows through the Verde Valley, between USGS streamflow-gaging stations 09504000 and 09506000, a distance of 51 river miles. Data from the surveys were used to investigate the dominant controls on Verde River base flow, spatial variability in gaining and losing reaches, and the effects that human alterations have on base flow in the surface-water system. The most prominent human alterations in the Verde Valley are dozens of surface-water diversions from streams, including gravity-fed ditch diversions along the Verde River.Base flow that entered the Verde River from the tributary streams of Oak Creek, Beaver Creek, and West Clear Creek was found to be a major source of base flow in the Verde River. Groundwater discharge directly into the Verde River near these three confluences also was an important contributor of base flow to the Verde River, particularly near the confluence with Beaver Creek. An examination of individual reaches of the Verde River in the Verde Valley found three reaches (largely unaffected by ditch diversions) exhibiting a similar pattern: a small net groundwater discharge in February 2011 (12 cubic feet per second or less) and a small net streamflow loss in June 2007 (11 cubic feet per second or less). Two reaches heavily affected by ditch diversions were difficult to interpret because of the large number of confounding human factors. Possible lower and upper bounds of net groundwater flux were calculated for all reaches, including those heavily affected by ditches.

  5. Preliminary estimates of spatially distributed net infiltration and recharge for the Death Valley region, Nevada-California

    SciTech Connect

    Hevesi, J.A.; Flint, A.L.; Flint, L.E.

    2002-07-18

    A three-dimensional ground-water flow model has been developed to evaluate the Death Valley regional flow system, which includes ground water beneath the Nevada Test Site. Estimates of spatially distributed net infiltration and recharge are needed to define upper boundary conditions. This study presents a preliminary application of a conceptual and numerical model of net infiltration. The model was developed in studies at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, which is located in the approximate center of the Death Valley ground-water flow system. The conceptual model describes the effects of precipitation, runoff, evapotranspiration, and redistribution of water in the shallow unsaturated zone on predicted rates of net infiltration; precipitation and soil depth are the two most significant variables. The conceptual model was tested using a preliminary numerical model based on energy- and water-balance calculations. Daily precipitation for 1980 through 1995, averaging 202 millimeters per year over the 39,556 square kilometers area of the ground-water flow model, was input to the numerical model to simulate net infiltration ranging from zero for a soil thickness greater than 6 meters to over 350 millimeters per year for thin soils at high elevations in the Spring Mountains overlying permeable bedrock. Estimated average net infiltration over the entire ground-water flow model domain is 7.8 millimeters per year. To evaluate the application of the net-infiltration model developed on a local scale at Yucca Mountain, to net-infiltration estimates representing the magnitude and distribution of recharge on a regional scale, the net-infiltration results were compared with recharge estimates obtained using empirical methods. Comparison of model results with previous estimates of basinwide recharge suggests that the net-infiltration estimates obtained using this model may overestimate recharge because of uncertainty in modeled precipitation, bedrock permeability, and soil properties for locations such as the Spring Mountains. Although this model is preliminary and uncalibrated, it provides a first approximation of the spatial distribution of net infiltration for the Death Valley region under current climatic conditions.

  6. Preliminary estimates of spatially distributed net infiltration and recharge for the Death Valley region, Nevada-California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hevesi, J.A.; Flint, A.L.; Flint, L.E.

    2002-01-01

    A three-dimensional ground-water flow model has been developed to evaluate the Death Valley regional flow system, which includes ground water beneath the Nevada Test Site. Estimates of spatially distributed net infiltration and recharge are needed to define upper boundary conditions. This study presents a preliminary application of a conceptual and numerical model of net infiltration. The model was developed in studies at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, which is located in the approximate center of the Death Valley ground-water flow system. The conceptual model describes the effects of precipitation, runoff, evapotranspiration, and redistribution of water in the shallow unsaturated zone on predicted rates of net infiltration; precipitation and soil depth are the two most significant variables. The conceptual model was tested using a preliminary numerical model based on energy- and water-balance calculations. Daily precipitation for 1980 through 1995, averaging 202 millimeters per year over the 39,556 square kilometers area of the ground-water flow model, was input to the numerical model to simulate net infiltration ranging from zero for a soil thickness greater than 6 meters to over 350 millimeters per year for thin soils at high elevations in the Spring Mountains overlying permeable bedrock. Estimated average net infiltration over the entire ground-water flow model domain is 7.8 millimeters per year.To evaluate the application of the net-infiltration model developed on a local scale at Yucca Mountain, to net-infiltration estimates representing the magnitude and distribution of recharge on a regional scale, the net-infiltration results were compared with recharge estimates obtained using empirical methods. Comparison of model results with previous estimates of basinwide recharge suggests that the net-infiltration estimates obtained using this model may overestimate recharge because of uncertainty in modeled precipitation, bedrock permeability, and soil properties for locations such as the Spring Mountains. Although this model is preliminary and uncalibrated, it provides a first approximation of the spatial distribution of net infiltration for the Death Valley region under current climatic conditions.

  7. A Comparison of Groundwater Storage Using GRACE Data, Groundwater Levels, and a Hydrological Model in Californias Central Valley

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuss, Amber; Brandt, William; Randall, Joshua; Floyd, Bridget; Bourai, Abdelwahab; Newcomer, Michelle; Skiles, Joseph; Schmidt, Cindy

    2011-01-01

    The Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) measures changes in total water storage (TWS) remotely, and may provide additional insight to the use of well-based data in California's agriculturally productive Central Valley region. Under current California law, well owners are not required to report groundwater extraction rates, making estimation of total groundwater extraction difficult. As a result, other groundwater change detection techniques may prove useful. From October 2002 to September 2009, GRACE was used to map changes in TWS for the three hydrological regions (the Sacramento River Basin, the San Joaquin River Basin, and the Tulare Lake Basin) encompassing the Central Valley aquifer. Net groundwater storage changes were calculated from the changes in TWS for each of the three hydrological regions and by incorporating estimates for additional components of the hydrological budget including precipitation, evapotranspiration, soil moisture, snow pack, and surface water storage. The calculated changes in groundwater storage were then compared to simulated values from the California Department of Water Resource's Central Valley Groundwater- Surface Water Simulation Model (C2VSIM) and their Water Data Library (WDL) Geographic Information System (GIS) change in storage tool. The results from the three methods were compared. Downscaling GRACE data into the 21 smaller Central Valley sub-regions included in C2VSIM was also evaluated. This work has the potential to improve California's groundwater resource management and use of existing hydrological models for the Central Valley.

  8. A comparison of groundwater storage using GRACE data, groundwater levels, and a hydrological model in California's Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Floyd, B.; Kuss, A. M.; Brandt, W. T.; Randall, J. N.; Bourai, A.; Newcomer, M. E.; Schmidt, C.; Skiles, J. W.

    2011-12-01

    The Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE), a NASA satellite sensor, measures changes in total water storage (TWS) and may provide additional insight to the use of well-based data in California's Central Valley, an important agricultural region. Under current California law, well owners are not required to report groundwater extraction rates, making estimation of total groundwater extraction difficult. As a result, other groundwater change detection techniques must be used. GRACE was used to map changes in TWS between October 2002 and September 2009 for the three hydrological regions (the Sacramento River Basin, the San Joaquin River Basin, and the Tulare Lake Basin) encompassing the Central Valley aquifer. Net groundwater storage changes were calculated from the changes in TWS for each of the three hydrological regions and by incorporating estimates for additional components of the hydrological budget including precipitation, evapotranspiration, soil moisture, snow pack, and surface water storage. The calculated changes in groundwater storage were then compared to simulated values from the California Department of Water Resource's Central Valley Groundwater-Surface Water Simulation Model (C2VSIM) and their Water Data Library (WDL) Geographic Information System (GIS) change in storage tool. Downscaling GRACE data into 21 smaller Central Valley sub-regions included in C2VSIM was also evaluated. This work has the potential to improve California's groundwater measurements and existing hydrological models for the Central Valley.

  9. Conodont biostratigraphy of the Ordovician-Silurian boundary in the Central Appalachian Valley and Ridge Province

    SciTech Connect

    Philips, P.L. Jr.; Hall, J.C. . Dept. of Earth Sciences)

    1993-03-01

    Conodont biostratigraphy of the Ordovician-Silurian boundary in the Central Appalachian Valley and Ridge Province is based primarily on lithologic criteria. Although the boundary is precisely defined lithologically, virtually nothing is known about the biostratigraphic relationships in this interval due to a historic lack of detailed studies in this region. The present study is based on nearly 50 samples from 7 sections in Tennessee and Virginia, aimed at establishing a conodont-based biostratigraphic framework useful for local and regional correlation of lithostratigraphic units and boundaries. The data at hand show uppermost Ordovician rocks in this region have conodont faunas which are characterized by species of Oulodus, Aphelognathus, Phragmodus, and Plectodina. These faunas represent associations which locally correspond to the Oulodus velicuspis to Aphelognathus divergens Zones. Lowermost Silurian rocks contain faunas dominated by species of Ozarkodina, Distomodus, Pranognathus, and Walliserodus that correspond to the faunas of the Distomodus kentuckyensis Zone. Conodont ages indicate that the uppermost Ordovician rocks in the Central Appalachians range in age from upper Edenian to upper Richmondian and lowermost Silurian rocks range in age from upper Rhuddanian to lower Telychian in age. No conodont faunas which characterize the uppermost Richmondian, Gamachian, or lowermost Rhuddanian have yet been identified. The results of this study are in agreement with those of out previous study of the Southern Appalachian Valley and Ridge Province.

  10. Spatially Distributed Exposure Assessment of Pesticide Sources in the Central Valley, California, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Y.; Zhang, M.

    2009-12-01

    Pesticides in agricultural runoff are considered as significant pollution from nonpoint sources in intensive agricultural regions such as California’s Central Valley. This study presents a spatially explicit modeling approach to extend field-scale pesticide transport model into basin level. The approach was applied to simulate chlorpyrifos use in the Central Valley during 2003-2007. Chlorpyrifos loadings were reported for each section (1×1 mi cell), and the simulation results were in general agreements with monitoring results at watershed level. The average value of loading as percent of use (LAPU) is 0.031% and varied with seasons and locations. Results of this study provide strong evidence that surface runoff generation and pesticide application timing are the two influencing factors on the spatial and temporal variability of chlorpyrifos sources from agricultural fields. This is one of the first studies in coupling GIS and field-scale models and providing simulations for the dynamics of pesticides over an agriculturally dominated landscape. The demonstrated modeling approach may be useful for assessment of the implementations of best management practice (BMPs) and total maximum daily load (TMDL).

  11. Packaging policies to reform the water sector: The case of the Central Valley Project Improvement Act

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischhendler, Itay; Zilberman, David

    2005-07-01

    Existing water policies often deviate from measures suggested by economic and environmental analysis. This is particularly true in the case of drought response policies, where effective policies are rarely adopted. This study focuses on how to enhance the political feasibility of options rather than identifying the optimal water policies. It argues that a legislative policy package may be a mechanism both to unite divergent interest groups into a coalition with common policy agendas and also to fragment or realign existing and traditional alliances. This majority building approach may have a greater chance of obtaining the required political support to advance water reforms. The negotiation over the Central Valley Project Improvement Act in California is used as an example. The case study illustrates how the policy packaging strategy split the traditional power alliance between the agricultural sector and the urban sector in California and between the agricultural sector in California and their allies in other U.S. western states. At the same time, policy packaging has created new regional and sectoral advocacy coalitions in support of water reform. As a result, the Bureau of Reclamation changed its policies in the Central Valley in California relating to the establishment of water markets, water pricing, and wildlife restoration fund and allocating water for the environment.

  12. Hydro-economic analysis of groundwater pumping for irrigated agriculture in California's Central Valley, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medellín-Azuara, Josué; MacEwan, Duncan; Howitt, Richard E.; Koruakos, George; Dogrul, Emin C.; Brush, Charles F.; Kadir, Tariq N.; Harter, Thomas; Melton, Forrest; Lund, Jay R.

    2015-09-01

    As in many places, groundwater in California (USA) is the major alternative water source for agriculture during drought, so groundwater's availability will drive some inevitable changes in the state's water management. Currently, agricultural, environmental, and urban uses compete for groundwater, resulting in substantial overdraft in dry years with lowering of water tables, which in turn increases pumping costs and reduces groundwater pumping capacity. In this study, SWAP (an economic model of agricultural production and water use in California) and C2VISim (the California Department of Water Resources groundwater model for California's Central Valley) are connected. This paper examines the economic costs of pumping replacement groundwater during drought and the potential loss of pumping capacity as groundwater levels drop. A scenario of three additional drought years continuing from 2014 show lower water tables in California's Central Valley and loss of pumping capacity. Places without access to groundwater and with uncertain surface-water deliveries during drought are the most economically vulnerable in terms of crop revenues, employment and household income. This is particularly true for Tulare Lake Basin, which relies heavily on water imported from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Remote-sensing estimates of idle agricultural land between 2012 and 2014 confirm this finding. Results also point to the potential of a portfolio approach for agriculture, in which crop mixing and conservation practices have substantial roles.

  13. A summary of ground-water pumpage in the Central Valley, California, 1961-77

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Diamond, Jonathan; Williamson, A.K.

    1983-01-01

    In the Central Valley of California, a great agricultural economy has been developed in a semiarid environment. This economy is supported by imported surface water and 9 to 15 million acre-feet per year of ground water. Estimates of ground-water pumpage computed from power consumption have been compiled and summarized. Under ideal conditions, the accuracy of the methods used is about 3 percent. This level of accuracy is not sustained over the entire study area. When pumpage for the entire area is mapped, the estimates seem to be consistent areally and through time. A multiple linear-regression model was used to synthesize data for the years 1961 through 1977, when power data were not available. The model used a relation between ground-water pumpage and climatic indexes to develop a full suite of pumpage data to be used as input to a digital ground-water model, one of the products of the Central Valley Aquifer Project. Statistical analysis of well-perforation data from drillers ' logs and water-temperature data was used to determine the percentage of pumpage that was withdrawn from each of two horizontal layers. (USGS)

  14. Recent land-use/land-cover change in the Central California Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Soulard, Christopher E.; Wilson, Tamara S.

    2013-01-01

    Open access to Landsat satellite data has enabled annual analyses of modern land-use and land-cover change (LULCC) for the Central California Valley ecoregion between 2005 and 2010. Our annual LULCC estimates capture landscape-level responses to water policy changes, climate, and economic instability. From 2005 to 2010, agriculture in the region fluctuated along with regulatory-driven changes in water allocation as well as persistent drought conditions. Grasslands and shrublands declined, while developed lands increased in former agricultural and grassland/shrublands. Development rates stagnated in 2007, coinciding with the onset of the historic foreclosure crisis in California and the global economic downturn. We utilized annual LULCC estimates to generate interval-based LULCC estimates (20002005 and 20052010) and extend existing 27 year interval-based land change monitoring through 2010. Resulting change data provides insights into the drivers of landscape change in the Central California Valley ecoregion and represents the first, continuous, 37 year mapping effort of its kind.

  15. WRF/MM5 performance comparison during CRPAQS field experiment in Central Valley of California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Z.; Chen, S.; Kleeman, M. J.

    2008-12-01

    The winter particulate matter (PM) and summer ozone (O3)problems in the Central Valley of California are among the worst in the United States. Concentrations of PM and O3 are highly dependent on the atmospheric conditions. Air quality modeling exercises seeking to design efficient emissions control strategies typically require the use of meso-scale meteorological models to provide input data for the reactive chemical transport calculations. The complex topography in California makes the simulation of meteorology relatively difficult. The selection of the best meso-scale atmospheric model is a crucial step for air quality simulation and emission control design in central California. In this study, WRF and MM5, the two most widely used meso-scale models, are used to simulate the atmospheric conditions during the California Regional Particulate Air Quality Study (CRPAQS) field experiments. The model results are compared to the observation data with a focus on the most important air- pollution related variables, including winds, temperature and relative humidity. Both WRF and MM5 are modified to generate hourly averaged output in order to directly compare with the observation data, which are available as hourly averages.The analysis is focused on the first seven model levels spanning a height up to 2000m above the surface. For each level, Error Root Mean Square (ERMS) during the period Dec 17th, 2000 to Jan 07, 2001 are averaged over all stations within California and only those within the Central Valley. The results show that within the valley, the WRF for temperature is about 1.3 deg smaller than that of MM5 for the first level. In general, WRF predictions for temperature are closer to observation than MM5 predictions for the lowest three levels. For the four levels above, MM5 simulated temperature were more accurate. MM5 predictions for wind speed were slightly better (about 0.2m/s) for the first three levels, while WRF simulated more accurate winds the remaining 4 levels. For relatively humidity, WRF results are better than MM5 for all the 7 levels. Similar conclusions hold for the state-wise station averaged ERMS results.Next, the first three level mean ERMS and Error are calculated for each station over the whole CRPAQS episode. The first three levels are studied as a set because conditions within this range have the most direct influence on ground-level pollutant concentrations. Within the Central Valley, WRF had the most accurate temperature predictions for 11 out of 12 stations in the first 3 model layers, while MM5 had more accurate wind speed for 8 out of 12 stations. For stations outside the Central Valley within coast or mountain areas, WRF had better temperature ERMS for 6 out of 11 stations and MM5 has better wind simulation for 10 out of 11 stations. The analysis showed that both WRF and MM5 overestimated wind speed for almost all stations, and MM5 had smaller Err (average of 0.2 m/s smaller) for most stations. MM5 overestimated temperature at all stations, while WRF underestimated temperature at almost all stations. The absolute value of the temperature Err for WRF was ~1.5 deg smaller than that for MM5. In summary, for the most air pollution related model layers, WRF simulated better temperature (1.3 deg difference for ERMS) while MM5 has better wind speed simulation (0.2m/s) during the CRPAQS episode. Both WRF and MM5 overestimated the wind speed, MM5 overestimated temperature by ~2.5 degrees for almost all stations, and WRF underestimated temperature by ~1 degree. WRF results are slightly better in term of the air pollution related variables for CRPAQS simulations.

  16. Geologic Utility of LANSDAT-4 TM Data. [Death Valley, California and the Silver Bell area of southern Arizona

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abrams, M.; Kahle, A. B.; Gillespie, A.; Conel, J.; Lang, H.

    1985-01-01

    The performance of the TM vis-a-vis various geological applications was quantified by analyzing: (1) the geological utility of the data with respect to the increased spatial resolution and number of bands (compared to the MSS); (2) the geometric accuracy; (3) the radiometric performance of the TM scanner. Preliminary analyses were performed on TM scenes: over Death Valley, California, and over southern Arizona. Both scenes were acquired in CCT-PT format, where the data were geometrically and radiometrically corrected. Overall, the TM data appears to contain a marked increase in geologically useful information; however, a number of instrumental or processing artifacts may well limit the ability of the geologist to fully extract this information.

  17. The Valley-of-Death: reciprocal sign epistasis constrains adaptive trajectories in a constant, nutrient limiting environment.

    PubMed

    Chiotti, Kami E; Kvitek, Daniel J; Schmidt, Karen H; Koniges, Gregory; Schwartz, Katja; Donckels, Elizabeth A; Rosenzweig, Frank; Sherlock, Gavin

    2014-12-01

    The fitness landscape is a powerful metaphor for describing the relationship between genotype and phenotype for a population under selection. However, empirical data as to the topography of fitness landscapes are limited, owing to difficulties in measuring fitness for large numbers of genotypes under any condition. We previously reported a case of reciprocal sign epistasis (RSE), where two mutations individually increased yeast fitness in a glucose-limited environment, but reduced fitness when combined, suggesting the existence of two peaks on the fitness landscape. We sought to determine whether a ridge connected these peaks so that populations founded by one mutant could reach the peak created by the other, avoiding the low-fitness "Valley-of-Death" between them. Sequencing clones after 250 generations of further evolution provided no evidence for such a ridge, but did reveal many presumptive beneficial mutations, adding to a growing body of evidence that clonal interference pervades evolving microbial populations. PMID:25449178

  18. Geologic mapping in Death Valley, California/Nevada using NASA/JPL airborne systems (AVIRIS, TIMS, and AIRSAR)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kruse, Fred A.; Dietz, John B.; Kiereinyoung, Kathryn S.

    1991-01-01

    A multi-sensor aircraft campaign called the Geologic Remote Sensing Field Experiment (GRSFE) conducted during 1989 resulted in acquisition of high quality multispectral images in the visible, near infrared, shortwave infrared, thermal infrared, and microwave regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. The airborne data sets include the Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS), the Thermal Infrared Multispectral Scanner (TIMS), and the Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR). Ancillary data include Landsat Thematic Mapper, laboratory and field spectral measurements, and traditional geologic mapping. The GRSFE data for a site in the northern Death Valley, (California and Nevada) region were calibrated to physical units and geometrically registered to a map base. Various aspects of this experiment are briefly discussed.

  19. The Valley of Death in anticancer drug development: a re-assessment

    PubMed Central

    Adams, David J.

    2012-01-01

    The past decade has seen an explosion in our understanding of cancer biology and with it many new potential disease targets. Yet our ability to translate these advances into therapies is poor, with a failure rate approaching 90%. Much discussion has been devoted to this so-called ‘Valley of Death’ in anticancer drug development, but the problem persists. Could we have overlooked some straight-forward explanations to this highly complex problem? Important aspects of tumor physiology, drug pharmacokinetics, preclinical models, drug delivery, and clinical translation are not often emphasized and could be critical. This perspective summarizes current views on the problem and suggests feasible alternatives. PMID:22410081

  20. Late Cenozoic sedimentation and volcanism during transtensional deformation in Wingate Wash and the Owlshead Mountains, Death Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luckow, Heather Golding; Pavlis, Terry L.; Serpa, Laura F.; Guest, Bernard; Wagner, David L.; Snee, Lawrence; Hensley, Tabitha M.; Korjenkov, Andrey

    2005-12-01

    New 1 : 24,000 scale mapping, geochemical analyses of volcanic rocks, and Ar/Ar and tephrochronology analyses of the Wingate Wash, northern Owlshead Mountain and Southern Panamint Mountain region document a complex structural history constrained by syntectonic volcanism and sedimentation. In this study, the region is divided into five structural domains with distinct, but related, histories: (1) The southern Panamint domain is a structurally intact, gently south-tilted block dominated by a middle Miocene volcanic center recognized as localized hypabyssal intrusives surrounded by proximal facies pyroclastic rocks. This Miocene volcanic sequence is an unusual alkaline volcanic assemblage ranging from trachybasalt to rhyolite, but dominated by trachyandesite. The volcanic rocks are overlain in the southwestern Panamint Mountains by a younger (Late Miocene?) fanglomerate sequence. (2) An upper Wingate Wash domain is characterized by large areas of Quaternary cover and complex overprinting of older structure by Quaternary deformation. Quaternary structures record N-S shortening concurrent with E-W extension accommodated by systems of strike-slip and thrust faults. (3) A central Wingate Wash domain contains a complex structural history that is closely tied to the stratigraphic evolution. In this domain, a middle Miocene volcanic package contains two distinct assemblages; a lower sequence dominated by alkaline pyroclastic rocks similar to the southern Panamint sequence and an upper basaltic sequence of alkaline basalt and basanites. This volcanic sequence is in turn overlain by a coarse clastic sedimentary sequence that records the unroofing of adjacent ranges and development of N-S trending, west-tilted fault blocks. We refer to this sedimentary sequence as the Lost Lake assemblage. (4) The lower Wingate Wash/northern Owlshead domain is characterized by a gently north-dipping stratigraphic sequence with an irregular unconformity at the base developed on granitic basement. The unconformity is locally overlain by channelized deposits of older Tertiary(?) red conglomerate, some of which predate the onset of extensive volcanism, but in most of the area is overlain by a moderately thick package of Middle Miocene trachybasalt, trachyandesitic, ash flows, lithic tuff, basaltic cinder, basanites, and dacitic pyroclastic, debris, and lahar flows with localized exposures of sedimentary rocks. The upper part of the Miocene stratigraphic sequence in this domain is comprised of coarse grained-clastic sediments that are apparently middle Miocene based on Ar/Ar dating of interbedded volcanic rocks. This sedimentary sequence, however, is lithologically indistinguishable from the structurally adjacent Late Miocene Lost Lake assemblage and a stratigraphically overlying Plio-Pleistocene alluvial fan; a relationship that handicaps tracing structures through this domain. This domain is also structurally complex and deformed by a series of northwest-southeast-striking, east-dipping, high-angle oblique, sinistral, normal faults that are cut by left-lateral strike-slip faults. The contact between the southern Panamint domain and the adjacent domains is a complex fault system that we interpret as a zone of Late Miocene distributed sinistral slip that is variably overprinted in different portions of the mapped area. The net sinistral slip across the Wingate Wash fault system is estimated at 7-9 km, based on offset of Proterozoic Crystal Springs Formation beneath the middle Miocene unconformity to as much as 15 km based on offset volcanic facies in Middle Miocene rocks. To the south of Wingate Wash, the northern Owlshead Mountains are also cut by a sinistral, northwest-dipping, oblique normal fault, (referred to as the Filtonny Fault) with significant slip that separates the Lower Wingate Wash and central Owlshead domains. The Filtonny Fault may represent a young conjugate fault to the dextral Southern Death Valley fault system and may be the northwest-dipping fault imaged by COCORP studies. Similarly, younger deformation in upper Wingate Wash is probably broadly related to distributed dextral shear along the Panamint Valley fault system. Earlier deformation (Late Miocene?) is more difficult to constrain because of overprinting but appears to be dominated by an E-W extension recognized by a NNW-striking, northeast-dipping, sinistral-oblique normal faults, N-S striking normal faults that splay in the northern Owlshead Mountains and include the large west-tilted fault blocks of the northern Owlshead Mountains.

  1. Chronology, sedimentology, and microfauna of groundwater discharge deposits in the central Mojave Desert, Valley Wells, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pigati, Jeffrey S.; Miller, David M.; Bright, Jordon E.; Mahan, Shannon; Nekola, Jeffrey C.; Paces, James B.

    2011-01-01

    During the late Pleistocene, emergent groundwater supported persistent and long-lived desert wetlands in many broad valleys and basins in the American Southwest. When active, these systems provided important food and water sources for local fauna, supported hydrophilic and phreatophytic vegetation, and acted as catchments for eolian and alluvial sediments. Desert wetlands are represented in the geologic record by groundwater discharge deposits, which are also called spring or wetland deposits. Groundwater discharge deposits contain information on the timing and magnitude of past changes in water-table levels and, thus, are a source of paleohydrologic and paleoclimatic information. Here, we present the results of an investigation of extensive groundwater discharge deposits in the central Mojave Desert at Valley Wells, California. We used geologic mapping and stratigraphic relations to identify two distinct wetland sequences at Valley Wells, which we dated using radiocarbon, luminescence, and uranium-series techniques. We also analyzed the sediments and microfauna (ostracodes and gastropods) to reconstruct the specific environments in which they formed. Our results suggest that the earliest episode of high water-table conditions at Valley Wells began ca. 60 ka (thousands of calendar yr B.P.), and culminated in peak discharge between ca. 40 and 35 ka. During this time, cold (4–12 °C) emergent groundwater supported extensive wetlands that likely were composed of a wet, sedge-rush-tussock meadow mixed with mesic riparian forest. After ca. 35 ka, the water table dropped below the ground surface but was still shallow enough to support dense stands of phreatophytes through the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). The water table dropped further after the LGM, and xeric conditions prevailed until modest wetlands returned briefly during the Younger Dryas cold event (13.0–11.6 ka). We did not observe any evidence of wet conditions during the Holocene at Valley Wells. The timing of these fluctuations is consistent with changes in other paleowetland systems in the Mojave Desert, the nearby Great Basin Desert, and in southeastern Arizona, near the border of the Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts. The similarities in hydrologic conditions between these disparate locations suggest that changes in groundwater levels during the late Pleistocene in desert wetlands scattered throughout the American Southwest were likely driven by synoptic-scale climate processes.

  2. Chronology, sedimentology, and microfauna of groundwater discharge deposits in the central Mojave Desert, Valley Wells, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pigati, J.S.; Miller, D.M.; Bright, J.E.; Mahan, S.A.; Nekola, J.C.; Paces, J.B.

    2011-01-01

    groundwater supported persistent and long-lived desert wetlands in many broad valleys and basins in the American Southwest. When active, these systems provided important food and water sources for local fauna, supported hydrophilic and phreatophytic vegetation, and acted as catchments for eolian and alluvial sediments. Desert wetlands are represented in the geologic record by groundwater discharge deposits, which are also called spring or wetland deposits. Groundwater discharge deposits contain information on the timing and magnitude of past changes in water-table levels and, thus, are a source of paleohydrologic and paleoclimatic information. Here, we present the results of an investigation of extensive groundwater discharge deposits in the central Mojave Desert at Valley Wells, California. We used geologic mapping and stratigraphic relations to identify two distinct wetland sequences at Valley Wells, which we dated using radiocarbon, luminescence, and uranium-series techniques. We also analyzed the sediments and microfauna (ostracodes and gastropods) to reconstruct the specific environments in which they formed. Our results suggest that the earliest episode of high water-table conditions at Valley Wells began ca. 60 ka (thousands of calendar yr B.P.), and culminated in peak discharge between ca. 40 and 35 ka. During this time, cold (4-12 ??C) emergent groundwater supported extensive wetlands that likely were composed of a wet, sedge-rush-tussock meadow mixed with mesic riparian forest. After ca. 35 ka, the water table dropped below the ground surface but was still shallow enough to support dense stands of phreatophytes through the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). The water table dropped further after the LGM, and xeric conditions prevailed until modest wetlands returned briefly during the Younger Dryas cold event (13.0-11.6 ka). We did not observe any evidence of wet conditions during the Holocene at Valley Wells. The timing of these fluctuations is consistent with changes in other paleowetland systems in the Mojave Desert, the nearby Great Basin Desert, and in southeastern Arizona, near the border of the Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts. The similarities in hydrologic conditions between these disparate locations suggest that changes in groundwater levels during the late Pleistocene in desert wetlands scattered throughout the American Southwest were likely driven by synopticscale climate processes. ?? 2011 Geological Society of America.

  3. Viscous flow lobes in central Taylor Valley, Antarctica: Origin as remnant buried glacial ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swanger, Kate M.; Marchant, David R.; Kowalewski, Douglas E.; Head, James W., III

    2010-08-01

    Viscous flow lobes are common throughout the McMurdo Dry Valleys (MDV) of Antarctica. These features have been described as rock glaciers, gelifluction lobes, solifluction lobes, talus mobilized by pore ice and/or segregation ice, and debris-covered glaciers. We investigate the origin, modification, and flow of a 2-km-long lobe (East Stocking Lobe or ESL) along the north wall of central Taylor Valley using field mapping techniques, shallow seismic surveys, time-dependent displacement surveys, and isotopic analyses of buried-ice samples. On the basis of these integrated analyses, we show that the ESL is cored with remnant glacier ice, most probably derived from an advance of nearby Stocking Glacier ˜ 130 kyr BP. Seismic data, coupled with results from ice-flow modeling assuming plastic flow of clean ice, suggest that the buried core of glacier ice is ˜ 14- to 30-m thick. Near its terminus, the ESL flows at a rate of ˜ 2.4 to 6.7 mm a - 1 . The loose drift that caps the buried ice (typically < 1 m thick) is composed of moderately stratified sand- and gravel-sized clasts; it is dry (1-3% soil gravimetric water content; GWC), except near ephemeral stream channels and the margins of melting snow banks (6-25% GWC). Stable isotopic analyses of samples from the upper 30 cm of the ice lie on a slope of ˜ 5.8 (when plotted on a δD vs. δ18O graph), well below the local meteoric water line of 7.75, suggesting modification by freeze/thaw processes and evaporation/sublimation. Measured air and soil temperatures show that intermittent melting is most likely possible during summer months where buried ice is ≤ 35 cm below the ground surface. Morphological comparisons with ice-cored deposits in upland regions of the Dry Valleys, e.g., Mullins and Beacon Valleys (30 km inland and ˜ 500 m higher in elevation), and near the coast (40 km distant and ˜ 500 m lower) reveal marked contrasts in the style of near-surface ice degradation and cryoturbation. From these morphological comparisons, we infer that buried-ice deposits in the stable upland zone have not experienced the relatively warm climate conditions now found at the ESL and at lower elevations in the Dry Valleys region (e.g. sustained summertime temperatures of ≥-4 °C) for the last several million years.

  4. Monitoring Surface Moisture of Crater-fill Sediment in Extreme hydroclimatic conditions (Ubehebe Volcanic Field, Death Valley, California).

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonaccorsi, R.; Zent, A.; McKay, C. P.

    2014-12-01

    The long term monitoring of soil surface moisture is key for constraining surface hydrology processes in extreme weather and climatic settings and their impact on biological and geological components of desert environments. We tested and applied the use of miniature data loggers to acquire novel Temperature (T) and water content (weight percent, wt%) of fine-grained sediments deposited during rain events at Ubehebe Crater (UC), the larger and deeper crater within a volcanic field in Death Valley. The Miniaturized in situ systems are compliant with Death Valley National Park's regulations to conduct scientific research in wilderness and sacred sites. About 130,000 hours of recorded soil moisture and temperature were acquired in relation to the hydroclimatic conditions (2009-current). Total annual rainfall in the area range from ~50mm to <250 mm/y in water years (WY) 2004-to date. These values are representative of the climatic context of the Mojave Region as they encompass the wettest (2005, 2011) and driest years (2002, 2007, 2012, 2013, 2014) of the last ~120 years (Western Regional Climate Center, www.wrcc.dri.edu). To date, surface (0.5 cm to 2 cm-depth) moisture of intra-crater deposits can vary from dry-very dry (1-3wt % to - 10 wt%) to wet-saturated (10-60 wt%). Over saturated conditions occur in ephemeral ponds, which appear to form once a year as a result of winter and summer rainstorms, and may last for one-two weeks (2009-2014 study years). Summer storms can yield ca. 40% to 60% of the total annual precipitation (WY 2011 thru 2014). The intensity and temporal distribution of annual storms together with ground temperature extremes (-16 to +67 ºC) influence moisture distribution and retention within the crater's floor.

  5. Perspective: Transforming science into medicine: how clinician-scientists can build bridges across research's "valley of death".

    PubMed

    Roberts, Scott F; Fischhoff, Martin A; Sakowski, Stacey A; Feldman, Eva L

    2012-03-01

    Significant increases in National Institutes of Health (NIH) spending on medical research have not produced corresponding increases in new treatments and cures. Instead, laboratory discoveries remain in what has been termed the "valley of death," the gap between bench research and clinical application. Recently, there has been considerable discussion in the literature and scientific community about the causes of this phenomenon and how to bridge the abyss. In this article, the authors examine one possible explanation: Clinician-scientists' declining role in the medical research enterprise has had a dilatory effect on the successful translation of laboratory breakthroughs into new clinical applications. In recent decades, the percentage of MDs receiving NIH funding has drastically decreased compared with PhDs. The growing gap between the research and clinical enterprises has resulted in fewer scientists with a true understanding of clinical problems as well as scientists who are unable to or uninterested in gleaning new basic research hypotheses from failed clinical trials. The NIH and many U.S. medical schools have recognized the decline of the clinician-scientist as a major problem and adopted innovative programs to reverse the trend. However, more radical action may be required, including major changes to the NIH peer-review process, greater funding for translational research, and significantly more resources for the training, debt relief, and early career support of potential clinician-scientists. Such improvements are required for clinician-scientists to conduct translational research that bridges the valley of death and transforms biomedical research discoveries into tangible clinical treatments and technologies. PMID:22373616

  6. Efficient crop type mapping based on remote sensing in the Central Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhong, Liheng

    Most agricultural systems in California's Central Valley are purposely flexible and intentionally designed to meet the demands of dynamic markets. Agricultural land use is also impacted by climate change and urban development. As a result, crops change annually and semiannually, which makes estimating agricultural water use difficult, especially given the existing method by which agricultural land use is identified and mapped. A minor portion of agricultural land is surveyed annually for land-use type, and every 5 to 8 years the entire valley is completely evaluated. So far no effort has been made to effectively and efficiently identify specific crop types on an annual basis in this area. The potential of satellite imagery to map agricultural land cover and estimate water usage in the Central Valley is explored. Efforts are made to minimize the cost and reduce the time of production during the mapping process. The land use change analysis shows that a remote sensing based mapping method is the only means to map the frequent change of major crop types. The traditional maximum likelihood classification approach is first utilized to map crop types to test the classification capacity of existing algorithms. High accuracy is achieved with sufficient ground truth data for training, and crop maps of moderate quality can be timely produced to facilitate a near-real-time water use estimate. However, the large set of ground truth data required by this method results in high costs in data collection. It is difficult to reduce the cost because a trained classification algorithm is not transferable between different years or different regions. A phenology based classification (PBC) approach is developed which extracts phenological metrics from annual vegetation index profiles and identifies crop types based on these metrics using decision trees. According to the comparison with traditional maximum likelihood classification, this phenology-based approach shows great advantages when the size of the training set is limited by ground truth availability. Once developed, the classifier is able to be applied to different years and a vast area with only a few adjustments according to local agricultural and annual weather conditions. 250 m MODIS imagery is utilized as the main input to the PBC algorithm and displays promising capacity in crop identification in several counties in the Central Valley. A time series of Landsat TM/ETM+ images at a 30 m resolution is necessary in the crop mapping of counties with smaller land parcels, although the processing time is longer. Spectral characteristics are also employed to identify crops in PBC. Spectral signatures are associated with phenological stages instead of imaging dates, which highly increases the stability of the classifier performance and overcomes the problem of over-fitting. Moderate accuracies are achieved by PBC, with confusions mostly within the same crop categories. Based on a quantitative analysis, misclassification in PBC has very trivial impacts on the accuracy of agricultural water use estimate. The cost of the entire PBC procedure is controlled to a very low level, which will enable its usage in routine annual crop mapping in the Central Valley.

  7. Hydraulic-property estimates for use with a transient ground-water flow model of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    W.R. Belcher; P.E. Elliott; A.L. Geldon

    2001-12-31

    The Death Valley regional ground-water flow system encompasses an area of about 43,500 square kilometers in southeastern California and southern Nevada. The study area is underlain by Quaternary to Tertiary basin-fill sediments and mafic-lava flows; Tertiary volcanic, volcaniclastic, and sedimentary rocks; Tertiary to Jurassic granitic rocks; Triassic to Middle Proterozoic carbonate and clastic sedimentary rocks; and Early Proterozoic igneous and metamorphic rocks. The rock assemblage in the Death Valley region is extensively faulted as a result of several episodes of tectonic activity. This study is comprised of published and unpublished estimates of transmissivity, hydraulic conductivity, storage coefficient, and anisotropy ratios for hydrogeologic units within the Death Valley region study area. Hydrogeologic units previously proposed for the Death Valley regional transient ground-water flow model, were recognized for the purpose of studying the distribution of hydraulic properties. Analyses of regression and covariance were used to assess if a relation existed between hydraulic conductivity and depth for most hydrogeologic units. Those analyses showed a weak, quantitatively indeterminate, relation between hydraulic conductivity and depth.

  8. Hydraulic-property estimates for use with a transient ground-water flow model of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belcher, Wayne R.; Elliott, Peggy E.; Geldon, Arthur L.

    2001-01-01

    The Death Valley regional ground-water flow system encompasses an area of about 43,500 square kilometers in southeastern California and southern Nevada, between latitudes 35? and 38?15' north and longitudes 115? and 117?45' west. The study area is underlain by Quaternary to Tertiary basin-fill sediments and mafic-lava flows; Tertiary volcanic, volcaniclastic, and sedimentary rocks; Tertiary to Jurassic granitic rocks; Triassic to Middle Proterozoic carbonate and clastic sedimentary rocks; and Early Proterozoic igneous and metamorphic rocks. The rock assemblage in the Death Valley region is extensively faulted as a result of several episodes of tectonic activity. This study is comprised of published and unpublished estimates of transmissivity, hydraulic conductivity, storage coefficient, and anisotropy ratios for hydrogeologic units within the Death Valley region study area. Hydrogeologic units previously proposed for the Death Valley regional transient ground-water flow model were recognized for the purpose of studying the distribution of hydraulic properties. Analyses of regression and covariance were used to assess if a relation existed between hydraulic conductivity and depth for most hydrogeologic units. Those analyses showed a weak, quantitatively indeterminate, relation between hydraulic conductivity and depth.

  9. Remediation of Mudboil Discharges in the Tully Valley of Central New York

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kappel, William M.

    2009-01-01

    Mudboils have been documented in the Tully Valley in Onondaga County, in central New York State, since the late 1890s and have continuously discharged sediment-laden (turbid) water into nearby Onondaga Creek since the 1950s. The discharge of sediment causes gradual land-surface subsidence that, in the past, necessitated rerouting a major petroleum pipeline and a buried telephone cable, and caused two road bridges to collapse. The turbid water discharged from mudboils can be either fresh or brackish (salty). Mudboil activity was first reported in the Syracuse, NY, Post Standard in a short article dated October 19, 1899: 'Tully Valley - A Miniature Volcano Few people are aware of the existence of a volcano in this town. It is a small one, to be sure, but very interesting. In the 20-rod gorge where the crossroad leads by the Tully Valley grist mill the hard highway bed has been rising foot after foot till the apex of a cone which has been booming has broken open and quicksand and water flow down the miniature mountain sides. It is an ever increasing cone obliterating wagon tracks as soon as crossed. The nearby bluff is slowly sinking. Probably the highway must sometime be changed on account of the sand and water volcano, unless it ceases its eruption.' This newspaper article accurately describes mudboil activity and presages the collapse of the Otisco Road bridge, 92 years later in 1991. The article indicates that land subsidence occurred nearby, but gives no indication that Onondaga Creek was turbid; this was either an oversight by the reporter or was not a concern at that time.

  10. Evaluating spatial and temporal variations of rainfall erosivity, case of Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meshesha, Derege Tsegaye; Tsunekawa, Atsushi; Tsubo, Mitsuru; Haregeweyn, Nigussie; Adgo, Enyew

    2015-02-01

    Land degradation in many Ethiopian highlands occurs mainly due to high rainfall erosivity and poor soil conservation practices. Rainfall erosivity is an indicator of the precipitation energy and ability to cause soil erosion. In Central Rift Valley (CRV) of Ethiopia, where the climate is characterized as arid and semiarid, rainfall is the main driver of soil erosion that in turn causes a serious expansion in land degradation. In order to evaluate the spatial and temporal variability of rainfall erosivity and its impact on soil erosion, long-term rainfall data (1980-2010) was used, and the monthly Fournier index (FI) and the annual modified Fournier index (MFI) were applied. Student's t test analysis was performed particularly to examine statistical significances of differences in average monthly and annual erosivity values. The result indicated that, in a similar spatial pattern with elevation and rainfall amount, average annual erosivity is also found being higher in western highlands of the valley and gradually decreased towards the east. The long-term average annual erosivity (MFI) showed a general decreasing trend in recent 10 years (2000-2010) as compared to previous 20 years (1980-1999). In most of the stations, average erosivity of main rainy months (May, June, July, and August) showed a decreasing trend, whereby some of them (about 33.3 %) are statically significant at 90 and 95 % confidence intervals but with high variation in spatial pattern of changes. The overall result of the study showed that rainfall aggression (erosivity) in the region has a general decreasing trend in the recent decade as compared to previous decades, especially in the western highlands of the valley. Hence, it implies that anthropogenic factors such as land use change being coupled with topography (steep slope) have largely contributed to increased soil erosion rate in the region.

  11. Tracking River Recharge in the Central Valley of California Using Chemical and Isotopic Tracers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moran, J. E.; Hudson, B.; Evans, D.; Horner, T.; Leif, R.; Eaton, G. F.

    2003-12-01

    Recharge to alluvial aquifers along the major rivers of the Central Valley of California is influenced by human activity in adjacent urban areas and groundwater basins. Intense pumping of Central Valley aquifers may induce recharge, while slurry walls, emplaced for flood control in densely populated areas, are intended to protect levees by preventing shallow recharge. These large rivers carry distinct chemical and isotopic signatures that allow recent recharge to be traced in adjacent wells. In particular, stable isotopes of oxygen delineate areas where river water, carrying a depleted isotopic signature from Sierra Nevada precipitation (-11 to -15 per mil), is recharging groundwater aquifers where local precipitation is significantly heavier (-7 per mil). Trace anthropogenic compounds present in river water, such as MtBE (from precipitation and recreational boating on watershed reservoirs), are also useful for identifying areas where river water has recently infiltrated. Analysis of groundwater age, using the tritium-helium method allows estimation of the time since recharge, and evaluation of the effect of human activity on the natural groundwater recharge and flow patterns. Results from a detailed study along the American River in Sacramento, where a slurry wall is in place, show areas of recent recharge, as evidenced by relatively high MtBE concentrations (matching river concentrations) and young groundwater ages in shallow wells. In other wells, older ages and very low MtBE concentrations delineate areas where active recharge is not taking place. These results are interpreted in the context of basin-wide analyses for the Sacramento urban area, where most groundwater sampled from municipal wells is devoid of tritium, and therefore recharged more than about 50 years ago. These data are collected for the Ambient Groundwater Monitoring and Assessment (GAMA) program, sponsored by the CA State Water Resources Control Board. Oxygen isotopes indicate that American River water has recharged a large portion of this basin, with wells showing decreasing fractions of isotopically depleted water moving away from the river to the north. A similar pattern is observed in other areas of intense pumping in groundwater basins along the major rivers in the Central Valley. This work was performed under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Energy by the University of California, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory under contract No. W-7405-ENG-48.

  12. Assessment of Climate Change Impacts on Agricultural Water Demands and Crop Yields in California's Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tansey, M. K.; Flores-Lopez, F.; Young, C. A.; Huntington, J. L.

    2012-12-01

    Long term planning for the management of California's water resources requires assessment of the effects of future climate changes on both water supply and demand. Considerable progress has been made on the evaluation of the effects of future climate changes on water supplies but less information is available with regard to water demands. Uncertainty in future climate projections increases the difficulty of assessing climate impacts and evaluating long range adaptation strategies. Compounding the uncertainty in the future climate projections is the fact that most readily available downscaled climate projections lack sufficient meteorological information to compute evapotranspiration (ET) by the widely accepted ASCE Penman-Monteith (PM) method. This study addresses potential changes in future Central Valley water demands and crop yields by examining the effects of climate change on soil evaporation, plant transpiration, growth and yield for major types of crops grown in the Central Valley of California. Five representative climate scenarios based on 112 bias corrected spatially downscaled CMIP 3 GCM climate simulations were developed using the hybrid delta ensemble method to span a wide range future climate uncertainty. Analysis of historical California Irrigation Management Information System meteorological data was combined with several meteorological estimation methods to compute future solar radiation, wind speed and dew point temperatures corresponding to the GCM projected temperatures and precipitation. Future atmospheric CO2 concentrations corresponding to the 5 representative climate projections were developed based on weighting IPCC SRES emissions scenarios. The Land, Atmosphere, and Water Simulator (LAWS) model was used to compute ET and yield changes in the early, middle and late 21st century for 24 representative agricultural crops grown in the Sacramento, San Joaquin and Tulare Lake basins. Study results indicate that changes in ET and yield vary between crops due to plant specific sensitivities to temperature, solar radiation and the vapor pressure deficits. Shifts in the growth period to earlier in the year, shortened growth period for annual crops as well as extended fall growth can also exert important influences. Projected increases in CO2 concentrations in the late 21st century exert very significant influences on ET and yield for many crops. To characterize potential impacts and the range of uncertainty, changes in total agricultural water demands and yields were computed assuming that current crop types and acreages in 21 Central Valley regional planning areas remained constant throughout the 21st century for each of the 5 representative future climate scenarios.

  13. The Valley of Death: Reciprocal sign epistasis constrains adaptive trajectories in a constant, nutrient limiting environment

    PubMed Central

    Chiotti, Kami; Kvitek, Daniel J.; Schmidt, Karen; Koniges, Greg; Schwartz, Katja; Donckels, Elizabeth A.; Rosenzweig, Frank; Sherlock, Gavin

    2015-01-01

    The fitness landscape is a powerful metaphor for describing the relationship between genotype and phenotype for a population under selection. However, empirical data as to the topography of fitness landscapes are limited, owing to difficulties in measuring fitness for large numbers of genotypes under any condition. We previously reported a case of reciprocal sign epistasis (RSE), where two mutations individually increased yeast fitness in a glucose-limited environment, but reduced fitness when combined, suggesting the existence of two peaks on the fitness landscape. We sought to determine whether a ridge connected these peaks so that populations founded by one mutant could reach the peak created by the other, avoiding the low-fitness “Valley-of-Death” between them. Sequencing clones after 250 generations of further evolution provided no evidence for such a ridge, but did reveal many presumptive beneficial mutations, adding to a growing body of evidence that clonal interference pervades evolving microbial populations. PMID:25449178

  14. Chemistry, mineralogy and origin of the clay-hill nitrate deposits, Amargosa River valley, Death Valley region, California, U.S.A.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ericksen, G.E.; Hosterman, J.W.; St., Amand, P.

    1988-01-01

    The clay-hill nitrate deposits of the Amargosa River valley, California, are caliche-type accumulations of water-soluble saline minerals in clay-rich soils on saline lake beds of Miocene, Pliocene(?) and Pleistocene age. The soils have a maximum thickness of ??? 50 cm, and commonly consist of three layers: (1) an upper 5-10 cm of saline-free soil; (2) an underlying 15-20 cm of rubbly saline soil; and (3) a hard nitrate-rich caliche, 10-20 cm thick, at the bottom of the soil profile. The saline constituents, which make up as much as 50% of the caliche, are chiefly Cl-, NO-3, SO2-4 and Na+. In addition are minor amounts of K+, Mg2+ and Ca2+, varying, though generally minor, amounts of B2O3 and CO2-3, and trace amounts of I (probably as IO-3), NO-2, CrO2-4 and Mo (probably as MoO2-4). The water-soluble saline materials have an I/Br ratio of ??? 1, which is much higher than nearly all other saline depostis. The principal saline minerals of the caliche are halite (NaCl), nitratite (NaNO3), darapskite (Na3(SO4)(NO3)??H2O), glauberite (Na2Ca(SO4)2), gypsum (CaSO4??2H2O) and anhydrite (CaSO4). Borax (Na2B4O5(OH)4??8H2O), tincalconite (Na2B4O5(OH)4??3H2O) and trona (Na3(CO3)(HCO3)??2H2O) are abundant locally. The clay-hill nitrate deposits are analogous to the well-known Chilean nitrate deposits, and probably are of similar origin. Whereas the Chilean deposits are in permeable soils of the nearly rainless Atacama Desert, the clay-hill deposits are in relatively impervious clay-rich soils that inhibited leaching by rain water. The annual rainfall in the Death Valley region of ??? 5 cm is sufficient to leach water-soluble minerals from the more permeable soils. The clay-hill deposits contain saline materials from the lake beds beneath the nitrate deposits are well as wind-transported materials from nearby clay-hill soils, playas and salt marshes. The nitrate is probably of organic origin, consisting of atmospheric nitrogen fixed as protein by photoautotrophic blue-green algae, which are thought to form crusts on soils at the sites of the deposits when moistened by rainfall. The protein is subsequently transformed to nitrate by autotophic bacteria. ?? 1988.

  15. A plan to study the aquifer system of the Central Valley of California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bertoldi, Gilbert L.

    1979-01-01

    Unconsolidated Quaternary alluvial deposits comprise a large complex aquifer system in the Central Valley of California. Millions of acre-feet of water is pumped from the system annually to support a large and expanding agribusiness industry. Since the 1950's, water levels have been steadily declining in many areas of the valley and concern has been expressed about the ability of the entire ground-water system to support agribusiness at current levels, not to mention its ability to function at projected expansion levels. At current levels of ground-water use, an estimated 1.5 to 2 million acre-feet is withdrawn from storage each year; that is, 1.5 to 2 million acre-feet of water is pumped annually in excess of annual replenishment. The U.S. Geological Survey has initiated a 4-year study to develop geologic, hydrologic, and hydraulic information and to establish a valleywide ground-water data base that will be used to build computer models of the ground-water flow system. Subsequently, these models may be used to evaluate the system response to various ground-water management alternatives. This report describes current problems, objectives of the study, and outlines the general work to be accomplished in the study area. A bibliography of about 600 references is included. (Kosco-USGS)

  16. Buried paleoindian-age landscapes in stream valleys of the central plains, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mandel, R.D.

    2008-01-01

    A systematic study of late-Quaternary landscape evolution in the Central Plains documented widespread, deeply buried paleosols that represent Paleoindian-age landscapes in terrace fills of large streams (> 5th order), in alluvial fans, and in draws in areas of western Kansas with a thick loess mantle. Alluvial stratigraphic sections were investigated along a steep bio-climatic gradient extending from the moist-subhumid forest-prairie border of the east-central Plains to the dry-subhumid and semi-arid shortgrass prairie of the west-central Plains. Radiocarbon ages indicate that most large streams were characterized by slow aggradation accompanied by cumulic soil development from ca. 11,500 to 10,000??14C yr B.P. In the valleys of some large streams, such as the Ninnescah and Saline rivers, these processes continued into the early Holocene. The soil-stratigraphic record in the draws of western Kansas indicates slow aggradation punctuated by episodes of landscape stability and pedogenesis beginning as early as ca. 13,300??14C yr B.P. and spanning the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary. The development record of alluvial fans in western Kansas is similar to the record in the draws; slow aggradation was punctuated by multiple episodes of soil development between ca. 13,000 and 9000??14C yr B.P. In eastern Kansas and Nebraska, development of alluvial fans was common during the early and middle Holocene, but evidence shows fan development as early as ca. 11,300??14C yr B.P. Buried soils dating between ca. 12,600 and 9000??14C yr B.P. were documented in fans throughout the region. In stream valleys across the Central Plains, rapid alluviation after ca. 9000??14C yr B.P. resulted in deeply buried soils that may harbor Paleoindian cultural deposits. Hence, the paucity of recorded stratified Paleoindian sites in the Central Plains is probably related to poor visibility (i.e., deep burial in alluvial deposits) instead of limited human occupation in the region during the terminal Pleistocene and early Holocene. The thick, dark, cumulic A horizons of soils, representing buried Paleoindian-age landscapes, are targets for future archaeological surveys. ?? 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Buried paleoindian-age landscapes in stream valleys of the central plains, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mandel, Rolfe D.

    2008-10-01

    A systematic study of late-Quaternary landscape evolution in the Central Plains documented widespread, deeply buried paleosols that represent Paleoindian-age landscapes in terrace fills of large streams (> 5th order), in alluvial fans, and in draws in areas of western Kansas with a thick loess mantle. Alluvial stratigraphic sections were investigated along a steep bio-climatic gradient extending from the moist-subhumid forest-prairie border of the east-central Plains to the dry-subhumid and semi-arid shortgrass prairie of the west-central Plains. Radiocarbon ages indicate that most large streams were characterized by slow aggradation accompanied by cumulic soil development from ca. 11,500 to 10,000 14C yr B.P. In the valleys of some large streams, such as the Ninnescah and Saline rivers, these processes continued into the early Holocene. The soil-stratigraphic record in the draws of western Kansas indicates slow aggradation punctuated by episodes of landscape stability and pedogenesis beginning as early as ca. 13,300 14C yr B.P. and spanning the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary. The development record of alluvial fans in western Kansas is similar to the record in the draws; slow aggradation was punctuated by multiple episodes of soil development between ca. 13,000 and 9000 14C yr B.P. In eastern Kansas and Nebraska, development of alluvial fans was common during the early and middle Holocene, but evidence shows fan development as early as ca. 11,300 14C yr B.P. Buried soils dating between ca. 12,600 and 9000 14C yr B.P. were documented in fans throughout the region. In stream valleys across the Central Plains, rapid alluviation after ca. 9000 14C yr B.P. resulted in deeply buried soils that may harbor Paleoindian cultural deposits. Hence, the paucity of recorded stratified Paleoindian sites in the Central Plains is probably related to poor visibility (i.e., deep burial in alluvial deposits) instead of limited human occupation in the region during the terminal Pleistocene and early Holocene. The thick, dark, cumulic A horizons of soils, representing buried Paleoindian-age landscapes, are targets for future archaeological surveys.

  18. Comparison of Summer and Winter California Central Valley Aerosol Distributions from Lidar and MODIS Measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lewis, Jasper R., Jr.; DeYoung, Russell J.; Chu, D. Allen

    2010-01-01

    Aerosol distributions from two aircraft lidar campaigns conducted in the California Central Valley are compared in order to identify seasonal variations. Aircraft lidar flights were conducted in June 2003 and February 2008. While the PM2.5 concentration is highest in the winter, the aerosol optical depth measured from MODIS is highest in the summer. A seasonal comparison shows that PM2.5 in the winter can exceed summer PM2.5 by 55%, while summer AOD exceeds winter AOD by 43%. Higher temperatures wildfires in the summer produce elevated aerosol layers that are detected by satellite measurements, but not surface particulate matter monitors. Measurements of the boundary layer height from lidar instruments are necessary to incorporate satellite measurements with air quality measurements.

  19. Metamorphism of Greater and Lesser Himalayan rocks exposed in the Modi Khola valley, central Nepal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Aaron J.; Ganguly, Jibamitra; Decelles, Peter G.

    2010-02-01

    Thermobarometric estimates for Lesser and Greater Himalayan rocks combined with detailed structural mapping in the Modi Khola valley of central Nepal reveal that large displacement thrust-sense and normal-sense faults and ductile shear zones mostly control the spatial pattern of exposed metamorphic rocks. Individual shear zone- or fault-bounded domains contain rocks that record approximately the same peak metamorphic conditions and structurally higher thrust sheets carry higher grade rocks. This spatial pattern results from the kinematics of thrust-sense faults and shear zones, which usually place deeper, higher grade rocks on shallower, lower grade rocks. Lesser Himalayan rocks in the hanging wall of the Ramgarh thrust equilibrated at about 9 kbar and 580°C. There is a large increase in recorded pressures and temperatures across the Main Central thrust. Data presented here suggest the presence of a previously unrecognized normal fault entirely within Greater Himalayan strata, juxtaposing hanging wall rocks that equilibrated at about 11 kbar and 720°C against footwall rocks that equilibrated at about 15 kbar and 720°C. Normal faults occur at the structural top and within the Greater Himalayan series, as well as in Lesser Himalayan strata 175 and 1,900 m structurally below the base of the Greater Himalayan series. The major mineral assemblages in the samples collected from the Modi Khola valley record only one episode of metamorphism to the garnet zone or higher grades, although previously reported ca. 500 Ma concordant monazite inclusions in some Greater Himalayan garnets indicate pre-Cenozoic metamorphism.

  20. Climate Variability and Water-Regulation Effects on Surface Water and Groundwater Interactions in California's Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munoz-Arriola, F.; Dettinger, M. D.; Hanson, R. T.; Faunt, C.; Cayan, D. R.

    2011-12-01

    California's Central Valley is one of the most important agricultural areas in the world and is highly dependent on the availability and management of surface water and groundwater. As such, it is a valuable large-scale system for investigating the interaction of climate variability and water-resource management on surface-water and groundwater interactions. In the Central Valley, multiple tools are available to allow scientists to understand these interactions. However, the full effect of human activities on the interactions occurring along the Aquifer-Soil-Plant-Atmosphere continuum remains uncertain. Two models were linked to investigate how non-regulated (natural conditions) and regulated (releases from dams) surface-water inflows from the surrounding contributing drainage areas to the alluvial plains of the Central Valley affects the valley's surface-water supply and groundwater pumpage under different climate conditions. The Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) macroscale (surface) hydrologic model was used to estimate the non-regulated streamflow. The U.S. Geological Survey's recently developed Central Valley Hydrologic Model (CVHM) was used to route both the regulated and non-regulated streamflow to the Central Valley and simulate the resulting hydrologic system. The CVHM was developed using MODFLOW's Farm Process (MF-FMP) in order to simulate agricultural water demand, surface-water deliveries, groundwater pumpage, and return flows in 21 water-balance subregions. As such, the CVHM simulates conjunctive use of water, providing a broad perspective on changes in the water systems of the Valley. Inflows from the contributing mountain watersheds are simulated in CVHM using the streamflow-routing package for the 1961-2003 time period. In order to analyze the affect of climate variability, dry and wet years were identified from below the 10th and above the 90th percentiles, respectively, in a multi-decadal time series (1961-2003) of surface-water inflows. The simulated recharge and groundwater pumping rates under four sets of conditions (dry unregulated, wet unregulated, dry regulated, and wet regulated) showed that the southern basins are more sensitive to water regulation than the northern basins. Additional results illustrate spatial differences in crop irrigation requirements during wet and dry years, which also were examined to enhance our understanding of the surface-water/groundwater interactions and their links with climate and resource management in the drainages contributing inflows to the Central Valley.

  1. Planned updates and refinements to the Central Valley hydrologic model with an emphasis on improving the simulation of land subsidence in the San Joaquin Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Faunt, Claudia C.; Hanson, Randall T.; Martin, Peter; Schmid, Wolfgang

    2011-01-01

    California's Central Valley has been one of the most productive agricultural regions in the world for more than 50 years. To better understand the groundwater availability in the valley, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) developed the Central Valley hydrologic model (CVHM). Because of recent water-level declines and renewed subsidence, the CVHM is being updated to better simulate the geohydrologic system. The CVHM updates and refinements can be grouped into two general categories: (1) model code changes and (2) data updates. The CVHM updates and refinements will require that the model be recalibrated. The updated CVHM will provide a detailed transient analysis of changes in groundwater availability and flow paths in relation to climatic variability, urbanization, stream flow, and changes in irrigated agricultural practices and crops. The updated CVHM is particularly focused on more accurately simulating the locations and magnitudes of land subsidence. The intent of the updated CVHM is to help scientists better understand the availability and sustainability of water resources and the interaction of groundwater levels with land subsidence.

  2. Planned updates and refinements to the central valley hydrologic model, with an emphasis on improving the simulation of land subsidence in the San Joaquin Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Faunt, C.C.; Hanson, R.T.; Martin, P.; Schmid, W.

    2011-01-01

    California's Central Valley has been one of the most productive agricultural regions in the world for more than 50 years. To better understand the groundwater availability in the valley, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) developed the Central Valley hydrologic model (CVHM). Because of recent water-level declines and renewed subsidence, the CVHM is being updated to better simulate the geohydrologic system. The CVHM updates and refinements can be grouped into two general categories: (1) model code changes and (2) data updates. The CVHM updates and refinements will require that the model be recalibrated. The updated CVHM will provide a detailed transient analysis of changes in groundwater availability and flow paths in relation to climatic variability, urbanization, stream flow, and changes in irrigated agricultural practices and crops. The updated CVHM is particularly focused on more accurately simulating the locations and magnitudes of land subsidence. The intent of the updated CVHM is to help scientists better understand the availability and sustainability of water resources and the interaction of groundwater levels with land subsidence. ?? 2011 ASCE.

  3. The Effects of Mountaintop Mines and Valley Fills on Aquatic Ecosystems of the Central Appalachian Coalfields (2011 Final)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Cover of the Mountaintop Mines and <span class=Valley Fills Central Appalachian Coalfields Final Report "> This report assesses the state of the sci...

  4. An Investigation into the Involvement of California Central Valley High School Students with Disabilities in the IEP Process

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anderson, Cheryle Ann

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the involvement of California Central Valley high school students with disabilities in the Individual Education Plan (IEP) process. Specifically, this study investigated the involvement of students with disabilities in the development of the IEP and IEP meetings. In addition, this study explored the…

  5. The Effects of Mountaintop Mines and Valley Fills on Aquatic Ecosystems of the Central Appalachian Coalfields (2011 Final)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Cover of the Mountaintop Mines and <span class=Valley Fills Central Appalachian Coalfields Final Report "> This report assesses the state of the sci...

  6. 76 FR 16818 - Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Standard Criteria for Ag and Urban Water Management Plans

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-03-25

    ... Bureau of Reclamation Central Valley Project Improvement Act, Standard Criteria for Ag and Urban Water Management Plans AGENCY: Bureau of Reclamation, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. SUMMARY: The ``Standard Criteria for Agricultural and Urban Water Management Plans'' (Criteria) are now available...

  7. Distribution of Glyphosate-Resistant Horseweed (Conyza Canadensis) and Relationship to Cropping Systems in the Central Valley of California

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Horseweed is an increasing problem in perennial crops and non-crop areas of the Central Valley of California. Similar to the situation in glyphosate-tolerant crops in other regions, glyphosate-based weed management strategies in perennial crops and non-crop areas have resulted in selection of a gly...

  8. The Effects of Mountaintop Mines and Valley Fills on Aquatic Ecosystems of the Central Appalachian Coalfields (External Review Draft)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report assesses the state of the science on the environmental impacts of mountaintop mines and valley fills (MTM-VF) on streams in the Central Appalachian Coalfields. Our review focused on the aquatic impacts of mountaintop removal coal mining, which, as its name suggests, ...

  9. Ca Isotopes in Evaporite Minerals from Death Valley, California: No Evidence for Non-Biological Fractionation during Precipitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, W.; Depaolo, D. J.; Ingram, B. L.; Owens, T. L.

    2005-12-01

    It has been proposed that Ca isotope fractionation is produced mainly by biological processes, and hence that Ca isotope effects may be a tracer of biological activity in the geologic records of both Earth and Mars. However, Ca isotope fractionation has been produced for rapid precipitation of calcite and aragonite in laboratory experiments, and this fractionation is interpreted to be kinetic% by some investigators and equilibrium by others. Whether the experimental results apply to natural conditions is unknown. To investigate whether there is Ca isotope fractionation in natural inorganic processes, we have measured evaporite minerals precipitated in the Badwater salt pan, Death Valley, California. Death Valley is the hottest and driest desert in North America. Average summer temperatures are 37.8° C with a maximum record of 56.7° C and an annual average of 26° C. Potential evaporation is about 3.8~m/yr, which is 100 times average precipitation. A continuous 200,000-year record of closed-basin calcite and sulfate precipitation is available from a 186-meter sediment core into Badwater Basin. The δ18O and δD variations of fluid inclusion waters in halite are consistent with flooding-dissolution-evaporation cycles (Yang et al., 1995; 1997). The δ18O records of calcite and sulfate reflect the timing and driving forces of late Quaternary paleoclimatic changes (Yang et al., 1998; 2005). The longer-term (96,000, 39,000 and 21,000 years) fluctuations match Milankovitch orbital forcing, and are likely to be global in origin; the shorter-term (14,000 and 8,000 years) fluctuations probably reflect regional climatic and/or hydrologic forcing. Excursions in calcite δ18O are similar to those of δ18O in sulfate in the Death Valley core, and mimic those in marine carbonate (SPECMAP) and polar ice in the Summit ice core (GRIP), Greenland. Preliminary study of Ca isotopes in the calcite and sulfate minerals from the Badwater saline sediment core shows no significant variations through the core, regardless of the evaporation-dissolution-flooding cycles indicated by O and D isotopes, evaporative chemical evolution of the saline lake waters, mineralogy, depositional environment and glacial-interglacial climatic periods. The δ44Ca value of both carbonates and sulfates (-0.3‰~ relative to bulk Earth Ca or -1.2‰~ relative to seawater) is also nearly identical to that expected for dissolved Ca in local runoff. These results indicate that the Ca isotope fractionation factor associated with precipitation of both carbonate and sulfate under natural conditions is very close to unity, that is, α = 1.0000~ ± ~0.0001. This suggests that the fractionation factor of approximately 0.9985 observed for the formation of bone and shell in both vertebrates and invertebrates is not an equilibrium thermodynamic effect.

  10. Death Valley regional groundwater flow system, Nevada and California-Hydrogeologic framework and transient groundwater flow model

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    : Belcher, Wayne R., (Edited By); Sweetkind, Donald S.

    2010-01-01

    A numerical three-dimensional (3D) transient groundwater flow model of the Death Valley region was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey for the U.S. Department of Energy programs at the Nevada Test Site and at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Decades of study of aspects of the groundwater flow system and previous less extensive groundwater flow models were incorporated and reevaluated together with new data to provide greater detail for the complex, digital model. A 3D digital hydrogeologic framework model (HFM) was developed from digital elevation models, geologic maps, borehole information, geologic and hydrogeologic cross sections, and other 3D models to represent the geometry of the hydrogeologic units (HGUs). Structural features, such as faults and fractures, that affect groundwater flow also were added. The HFM represents Precambrian and Paleozoic crystalline and sedimentary rocks, Mesozoic sedimentary rocks, Mesozoic to Cenozoic intrusive rocks, Cenozoic volcanic tuffs and lavas, and late Cenozoic sedimentary deposits of the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system (DVRFS) region in 27 HGUs. Information from a series of investigations was compiled to conceptualize and quantify hydrologic components of the groundwater flow system within the DVRFS model domain and to provide hydraulic-property and head-observation data used in the calibration of the transient-flow model. These studies reevaluated natural groundwater discharge occurring through evapotranspiration (ET) and spring flow; the history of groundwater pumping from 1913 through 1998; groundwater recharge simulated as net infiltration; model boundary inflows and outflows based on regional hydraulic gradients and water budgets of surrounding areas; hydraulic conductivity and its relation to depth; and water levels appropriate for regional simulation of prepumped and pumped conditions within the DVRFS model domain. Simulation results appropriate for the regional extent and scale of the model were provided by acquiring additional data, by reevaluating existing data using current technology and concepts, and by refining earlier interpretations to reflect the current understanding of the regional groundwater flow system. Groundwater flow in the Death Valley region is composed of several interconnected, complex groundwater flow systems. Groundwater flow occurs in three subregions in relatively shallow and localized flow paths that are superimposed on deeper, regional flow paths. Regional groundwater flow is predominantly through a thick Paleozoic carbonate rock sequence affected by complex geologic structures from regional faulting and fracturing that can enhance or impede flow. Spring flow and ET are the dominant natural groundwater discharge processes. Groundwater also is withdrawn for agricultural, commercial, and domestic uses. Groundwater flow in the DVRFS was simulated using MODFLOW-2000, the U.S. Geological Survey 3D finitedifference modular groundwater flow modeling code that incorporates a nonlinear least-squares regression technique to estimate aquifer parameters. The DVRFS model has 16 layers of defined thickness, a finite-difference grid consisting of 194 rows and 160 columns, and uniform cells 1,500 meters (m) on each side. Prepumping conditions (before 1913) were used as the initial conditions for the transient-state calibration. The model uses annual stress periods with discrete recharge and discharge components. Recharge occurs mostly from infiltration of precipitation and runoff on high mountain ranges and from a small amount of underflow from adjacent basins. Discharge occurs primarily through ET and spring discharge (both simulated as drains) and water withdrawal by pumping and, to a lesser amount, by underflow to adjacent basins simulated by constant-head boundaries. All parameter values estimated by the regression are reasonable and within the range of expected values. The simulated hydraulic heads of the final calibrated transient mode

  11. Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California -- hydrogeologic framework and transient ground-water flow model

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    : Belcher, Wayne R., (Edited By)

    2004-01-01

    A numerical three-dimensional (3D) transient ground-water flow model of the Death Valley region was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey for the U.S. Department of Energy programs at the Nevada Test Site and at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Decades of study of aspects of the ground-water flow system and previous less extensive ground-water flow models were incorporated and reevaluated together with new data to provide greater detail for the complex, digital model. A 3D digital hydrogeologic framework model (HFM) was developed from digital elevation models, geologic maps, borehole information, geologic and hydrogeologic cross sections, and other 3D models to represent the geometry of the hydrogeologic units (HGUs). Structural features, such as faults and fractures, that affect ground-water flow also were added. The HFM represents Precambrian and Paleozoic crystalline and sedimentary rocks, Mesozoic sedimentary rocks, Mesozoic to Cenozoic intrusive rocks, Cenozoic volcanic tuffs and lavas, and late Cenozoic sedimentary deposits of the Death Valley Regional Ground-Water Flow System (DVRFS) region in 27 HGUs. Information from a series of investigations was compiled to conceptualize and quantify hydrologic components of the ground-water flow system within the DVRFS model domain and to provide hydraulic-property and head-observation data used in the calibration of the transient-flow model. These studies reevaluated natural ground-water discharge occurring through evapotranspiration and spring flow; the history of ground-water pumping from 1913 through 1998; ground-water recharge simulated as net infiltration; model boundary inflows and outflows based on regional hydraulic gradients and water budgets of surrounding areas; hydraulic conductivity and its relation to depth; and water levels appropriate for regional simulation of prepumped and pumped conditions within the DVRFS model domain. Simulation results appropriate for the regional extent and scale of the model were provided by acquiring additional data, by reevaluating existing data using current technology and concepts, and by refining earlier interpretations to reflect the current understanding of the regional ground-water flow system. Ground-water flow in the Death Valley region is composed of several interconnected, complex ground-water flow systems. Ground-water flow occurs in three subregions in relatively shallow and localized flow paths that are superimposed on deeper, regional flow paths. Regional ground-water flow is predominantly through a thick Paleozoic carbonate rock sequence affected by complex geologic structures from regional faulting and fracturing that can enhance or impede flow. Spring flow and evapotranspiration (ET) are the dominant natural ground-water discharge processes. Ground water also is withdrawn for agricultural, commercial, and domestic uses. Ground-water flow in the DVRFS was simulated using MODFLOW-2000, a 3D finite-difference modular ground-water flow modeling code that incorporates a nonlinear least-squares regression technique to estimate aquifer parameters. The DVRFS model has 16 layers of defined thickness, a finite-difference grid consisting of 194 rows and 160 columns, and uniform cells 1,500 m on each side. Prepumping conditions (before 1913) were used as the initial conditions for the transient-state calibration. The model uses annual stress periods with discrete recharge and discharge components. Recharge occurs mostly from infiltration of precipitation and runoff on high mountain ranges and from a small amount of underflow from adjacent basins. Discharge occurs primarily through ET and spring discharge (both simulated as drains) and water withdrawal by pumping and, to a lesser amount, by underflow to adjacent basins, also simulated by drains. All parameter values estimated by the regression are reasonable and within the range of expected values. The simulated hydraulic heads of the final calibrated transient model gener

  12. Geomorphology and Tectonics at the Intersection of Silurian and Death Valleys, Southern California - 2005 Guidebook Pacific Cell Friends of the Pleistocene

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miller, David M.; Valin, Zenon C.

    2007-01-01

    This publication describes results from new regional and detailed surficial geologic mapping, combined with geomorphologic, geochronologic, and tectonic studies, in Silurian Valley and Death Valley, California. The studies address a long-standing problem, the tectonic and geomorphic evolution of the intersection between three regional tectonic provinces: the eastern California shear zone, the Basin and Range region of southern Nevada and adjacent California, and the eastern Mojave Desert region. The chapters represent work presented on the 2005 Friends of the Pleistocene field trip and meeting as well as the field trip road log.

  13. Erosion Effects of Liquid Water and Volatiles in a Former Lacustrine Environment - From Gale Crater to Death Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iacob, R. H.; Bonaccorsi, R.; Iacob, C. E.

    2014-12-01

    During its first two years of exploration, Curiosity rover provided strong evidence of water activity at Gale Crater on Mars. While liquid water is not commonly present on the surface of Mars, large depressions such as Gale Crater hold evidence that water was collected in impact craters on Mars in the distant past. Specific features such as alluvial fans, inverted riverbeds, moat areas, and sedimentary formations, demonstrate strong water activity on low elevation regions of Mars. While surface water (gradually) disappeared as the climate and atmosphere of Mars changed, important water deposits formed underground, either as sub-surface ice shelves, or in the form of hydrated minerals, as demonstrated by MER and MSL. Although the presence of water ice under the ancient lake bed at the foothills of Mount Sharp is still to be determined, the area explored so far by Curiosity exhibits erosion features that can help describe the history of water activity along billions of years, e.g., river streams, lacustrine sedimentation, and later cycles of evaporation, frosting and sublimation. This presentation features a comparative study of water erosion processes at Gale Crater on Mars and Death Valley (DV) on Earth, from ancient water flows and lacustrine environments, through evaporation, dryness, and cyclic frosting and sublimation. Groundwater deposits in Death Valley offer best opportunities to study the process of minerals hydration, as well as landforms related to underground water percolation and evaporation, similar to those discovered by Curiosity at Yellowknife Bay. Furthermore, sedimentary processes in lacustrine proximal settings similar to those argued for Mount Sharp, or seen at Gale Crater's floor, have been studied in several locations of DV. These include, but are not limited to, younger dry lake beds of former lakes Manly and Panamint, carved badland formations of Furnace Creek Lake (Zabriskie Point) and older Tertiary lacustrine and fanglomeratic deposits exposed in cratered terrains (i.e., Ubehebe Volcanic Field). All of the above involve depositional and erosional landforms (gullies, alluvial fans, bottom slope debris deposits, layers of hydrated minerals), which can be used as natural research laboratory for sedimentary and erosion processes and as analog models for Gale Crater.

  14. Constraints on the post-middle-Pleistocene tectonic development of the Confidence Hills, southern Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goodman, J. T.; Caskey, S. J.

    2009-12-01

    Our recent field mapping and tephrochronology offers new constraints on the style, timing, and rates of middle-Pleistocene-to-recent deformation in the Confidence Hills (CH), southern Death Valley. Movement on the active trace of the Southern Death Valley fault zone (SDVFZ) was preceded by earlier large-scale, northeast-vergent folding. This earlier folding involves several hundred meters of conformable late-Pliocene-to-middle-Pleistocene strata, which together form the common limb of a locally overturned fault-propagation fold pair. Geometric relations require that the blind thrust(s) responsible for earlier folding in the CH root well to the southwest of the active trace of the SDVFZ, which raises questions concerning previous flower structure models for earlier folding in the CH. Earlier folding began after deposition of Upper Glass Mountain tephra (1.1-0.9 Ma), which lies within the uppermost section of conformable, locally overturned Confidence Hills Formation(CHF), and ended prior to deposition of unconformably overlying fanglomerate, which contain tephra layers we tentatively correlate to the Bishop (0.76 Ma) and Lava Creek B (0.64 Ma) tephra. Earlier folding resulted in greater than 400 m structural relief and nearly 600 m of shortening in the span of 140-340 ka, yielding a middle-Pleistocene shortening rate of ~1.8-4.3 mm/yr. Dextral slip along the mappable traces of the SDVFZ began after earlier fault-propagation folding and also after deposition of the 0.76-0.64-Ma fanglomerates. Net right-lateral offset along the fault zone is well constrained ~4-km south of Shoreline Butte where a steeply-dipping contact marking the base of volcaniclastic conglomerate of the CHF is offset ~650 m. These relations yield a minimum post-middle-Pleistocene slip rate of ~1 mm/yr for the SDVFZ. Post-0.64-Ma shortening within the CH has been minor relative to earlier folding. The earlier fault-propagation folding in the CH appears to be related to a short-lived episode of northeast-directed motion of the Owlshead Mountains block, which was likely accommodated by left-lateral slip along the Wingate Wash fault.

  15. Using the Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF) for remotely mapping surface roughness on alluvial fans: A comparison of Death Valley, CA to Mojave Crater on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doyle, S. L.; Wilkinson, M. J.; Scuderi, L. A.; Weissmann, G. S.; Scuderi, L. J.

    2011-12-01

    The Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF) describes how incoming light from a given direction is reflected from specific surfaces in response to different incoming solar radiation angles. The amount and directionality of reflected light is a function of surface roughness and orientation. The goal of this study is to assess whether a BRDF based approach may be applicable for creating surface roughness maps for Martian alluvial fans. Landsat 7 satellite imagery is used to make classifications of surfaces with different roughness and spectral properties for alluvial fan surfaces in Death Valley, California. The resulting classes have been interpreted to represent surfaces of different ages and also different deposit types. In Death Valley, older surfaces are classified based on the amount of shadowing due to gully formation, differences in the amount of surface smoothness from desert pavement formation, and desert varnish color variations. In contrast, the most recently formed surfaces have an assemblage of classes that represent surface deposits of different grain size and sorting, as well as different landform types - incised channels and elevated bars. Many Death Valley fans have a telescoping morphology where progressively younger surfaces reach basin-ward. This is more evident on some fans using a BRDF classification. A similar map was made for depositional landforms within Mojave Crater on Mars, identified as sub-kilometer alluvial fans by Williams and Malin (2008). These alluvial fans are the youngest found on Mars (Amazonian age) and have topographic similarities to fans in the southwestern US. Any geomorphic similarities between Death Valley fans and those within Mojave Crater can be assessed using surface roughness. Imagery from both the High Resolution Imaging Experiment (HiRISE) and Context Camera (CTX) onboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) were used to compare differences in spatial resolution on BRDF classifications. The resulting surface roughness maps are strikingly similar in classes and patterns to many fans within Death Valley. The surfaces interpreted by Williams and Malin (2008) to be evidence of multiple flow events are clearly classified using BRDF. In addition to age differences, possible locations of materials with different grain size and sorting are also identified. Since the BRDF classes of certain surface features on Earth and Mars fans largely overlap, field observations for each class type made for Death Valley fan surfaces may be useful for understanding the past fluvial processes on Mars and their similarities with fan forming processes in arid regions on Earth. This remote sensing approach has the potential to provide a tool for studying fans that may be inaccessible or too large for extensive fieldwork.

  16. Linear Ground-Motions in the Wabash Valley, Central United States: Two Decades of Unconventional Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woolery, E. W.

    2012-12-01

    Since the mid-1980's small and moderate-sized earthquakes in the Ohio and Wabash River valleys of the central United States have been digitally recorded by seismographs, called blast monitors, deployed to monitor vibrations from chemical explosions associated with regional mining and quarrying. Because there were relatively few conventional networked strong-motion and broad-band instruments for this area between 1980 and the early 2000's, the more than 200 observations have provided a relatively widespread source of digital earthquake ground motions. Additional deployment of networked instrumentation during the last decade and their numerous recordings of the April 2008, Mt. Carmel, Illinois earthquake sequence have provided the first effective means for comparing free-field blast monitor and conventional network ground-motion observations. The peak ground-motion characteristics for both data sets relative to a common predictive relationship are similar, suggesting that blast monitor observations in the central U.S. compliment conventional network data for moderate-sized (< M5.5) events. Much of the ground motion prediction effort in the central United States has been focused on deep (>> 30 m) alluvial sites, such as those found in the Mississippi embayment. The free-field digital velocity records at blast-monitor sites in the Wabash Valley are more typical of the areas outside the embayment. The ground-motion database is composed of small to moderate size regional earthquakes with a magnitude range between M3 and M5.2; however, the bulk of the observations are associated with the 1987 M4.96 and 2008 M5.2 southeastern Illinois earthquakes, and the 2002 M4.5 southwestern Indiana earthquake. The velocity recordings and ancillary site investigations for the 2008 southeastern Illinois earthquake sequence put the findings into context with the previous observations, and quantify the reduction in ground-motion variability that can be achieved with conventional site-effect characterization techniques. Results show ground-motion characteristics for the 2008 earthquake sequence are consistent with previous observations in the area, beginning with the 1987 southwestern Illinois earthquake. In addition, site-effect corrections reduced the range of spectral amplitude for frequencies greater than 2 Hz between 40 and 70 percent, as well as the spectral variation by approximately a factor of 4. The data also show that a peak ground velocity of 1.2 cm/s delineates a clear boundary separating Modified Mercalli intensities IV and V. This observation can be useful in scaling ground motions of historical seismicity, as well as predicting the effects of future events. We speculate these quantitative characteristics are likely representative for ground-motions throughout most of the central United States with the exception of those the infrequent thick-sediment-filled areas within major river valleys.

  17. Groundwater Quality and Nitrogen Use Efficiency in Nebraska's Central Platte River Valley.

    PubMed

    Ferguson, Richard B

    2015-03-01

    Groundwater nitrate contamination has been an issue in the Platte River Valley of Nebraska since the 1960s, with groundwater nitrate-N concentrations frequently in excess of 10 mg L. This article summarizes education and regulatory efforts to reduce the environmental impact of irrigated crop production in the Platte River Valley. In 1988, a Groundwater Management Area (GWMA) was implemented in the Central Platte Natural Resources District to encourage adoption of improved management practices. Since 1988, there have been steady declines in average groundwater nitrate-N concentrations of about 0.15 mg NO-N L yr in much of the GWMA (from 19 to 15 mg NO-N L). However, N use efficiency (NUE) (partial factor productivity for N [PFP]) has increased very little from 1988 to 2012 (60-65 kg grain kg N), whereas statewide PFP increased from 49 to 67 kg grain kg N in the same period. Although growers are encouraged to credit N from sources besides fertilizer (e.g., soil residual, legumes, irrigation water, and manure), confidence in and use of credits tended to decrease as credits became larger; there was a tendency toward an average N rate regardless of credit-based recommendations. This information, coupled with data from other studies, suggests that much of the decline in groundwater nitrate can be attributed to improved irrigation management-especially conversion from furrow to sprinkler irrigation-and to a lesser extent to improved timing of N application. The development and adoption of improved N management practices, such as fertigation, controlled-release N formulation, and use of crop canopy sensors for in-season N application may be required for further significant NUE gains in these irrigated systems. PMID:26023964

  18. Two diamictites, two cap carbonates, two δ13C excursions, two rifts: The Neoproterozoic Kingston Peak Formation, Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prave, A. R.

    1999-04-01

    Stratigraphic mapping of the Neoproterozoic glaciogenic Kingston Peak Formation (Death Valley, California) provides evidence for two temporally discrete extensional deformation episodes. These episodes are bracketed by the Sourdough Limestone and Noonday Dolomite, the facies characteristics and δ13C data (ranging between 2.15 and -2.56‰ and -1.88 and -4.86‰, respectively) of which make them equivalent to Sturtian and Varangian age cap carbonates, respectively. This constrains the two extensional episodes along the southwestern margin of Laurentia to ca. 700 Ma and ca. 600 Ma. These observations and data show that the field evidence for mid-Neoproterozoic breakup and the predictions from tectonic subsidence curves for a latest Neoproterozoic breakup are both correct. Thus, Neoproterozoic plate reconstructions must account for two discrete rift episodes separated by 100 m.y. or more. Confining rifting to within the Kingston Peak Formation thereby places the younger Proterozoic rocks of the southwestern Great Basin in the rift to drift tectonic phase.

  19. Isolation and characterization of two serine proteases from metagenomic libraries of the Gobi and Death Valley deserts.

    PubMed

    Neveu, Julie; Regeard, Christophe; DuBow, Michael S

    2011-08-01

    The screening of environmental DNA metagenome libraries for functional activities can provide an important source of new molecules and enzymes. In this study, we identified 17 potential protease-producing clones from two metagenomic libraries derived from samples of surface sand from the Gobi and Death Valley deserts. Two of the proteases, DV1 and M30, were purified and biochemically examined. These two proteases displayed a molecular mass of 41.5 kDa and 45.7 kDa, respectively, on SDS polyacrylamide gels. Alignments with known protease sequences showed less than 55% amino acid sequence identity. These two serine proteases appear to belong to the subtilisin (S8A) family and displayed several unique biochemical properties. Protease DV1 had an optimum pH of 8 and an optimal activity at 55°C, while protease M30 had an optimum pH >11 and optimal activity at 40°C. The properties of these enzymes make them potentially useful for biotechnological applications and again demonstrate that metagenomic approaches can be useful, especially when coupled with the study of novel environments such as deserts. PMID:21494865

  20. Scientific Innovation's Two Valleys of Death: How Blood and Tissue Banks Can Help to Bridge the Gap

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Sean D.A.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Most biomedical basic research in the United States takes place at universities and research institutes and is funded by federal grants. Basic research is awarded billions of federal dollars every year, enabling new discoveries and greater understanding of the fundamental science that makes new innovations and therapies possible. However, when basic research yields an invention of practical use and the research evolves from basic to applied, the playing field changes. Pre-technology licensing federal dollars all but disappear, and innovations rely predominantly on private funding to support the full path from bench to bedside. It is along this path that the scientific advance faces two Valleys of Death. These sometimes insurmountable development stages are the product of the innovation’s inherent financial, business and investment risks. Well-planned and executed in vivo studies using quality biological materials demonstrating proof-of-concept is often the key to bridging these gaps, and blood and tissue banks offer unique services and resources to enable this process. PMID:25457967

  1. Delineation and hydrologic effects of a gasoline leak at Stovepipe Wells Hotel, Death Valley National Monument, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Buono, A.; Packard, Elaine M.

    1982-01-01

    Ground water is the only local source of water available to the Stovepipe Wells Hotel facilities of the Death Valley National Monument, California. A leak in a service station storage tank caused the formation of a gasoline layer overlying the water table, creating the potential for contamination of the water supply. The maximum horizontal extent of the gasoline layer was mathematically estimated to be 1,300 feet downgradient from the leaky gasoline tank. Exploratory drilling detected the gasoline layer between 900 and 1,400 feet downgradient and between 50 and 150 feet upgradient from the source. Traces of the soluble components of gasoline were also found in the aquifer 150 feet upgradient, and 250 feet distant from the source perpendicular to the direction of ground-water movement. The gasoline spill is not likely to have an effect on the supply wells located 0.4 mile south of the leak source, which is nearly perpendicular to the direction of ground-water movement and the primary direction of gasoline movement in the area. No effect on phreatophytes 2 miles downgradient from the layer is likely, but the potential effects of gasoline vapors within the unsaturated zone on local xerophytes are not known. (USGS)

  2. Sliding stones of Racetrack Playa, Death Valley, USA: The roles of rock thermal conductivity and fluctuating water levels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kletetschka, Gunther; Hooke, Roger LeB.; Ryan, Andrew; Fercana, George; McKinney, Emerald; Schwebler, Kristopher P.

    2013-08-01

    On occasion, Racetrack playa in Death Valley National Park becomes flooded and temperatures then drop appreciably below freezing. The thermal conductivity of rock is greater than that of water, so heat is conducted from a partially-submerged rock faster than from water. Consequently, a collar of thicker ice forms at the water surface, a layer of ice forms on more deeply-submerged parts of the rock, and playa sediment beneath the rock may even become frozen to it. While this occurs, only a surface layer of ice forms on water away from the rock. Once the ice becomes thick enough, perhaps only 5-10 mm, either the buoyancy of the ice or additions of water to the playa by rain, snow-melt, or groundwater seepage then reduce the normal force between the rock and the playa to the point where wind shear can move the ice sheet with its entrained rocks, making trails (Stanley, 1955; Reid et al., 1995). After the ice melts, rocks are left at the ends of the trails, sometimes atop a pedestal of silt. A renewed increase in water level on the playa before the ice melts may lift a rock completely free of the playa surface and whisk it away, leaving a rockless trail. During a movement event, changes in rock orientation or water depth may result in changes in width along the track. Rock speeds are likely tens to hundreds of millimeters per second.

  3. Evaluation of increases in dissolved solids in ground water, Stovepipe Wells Hotel, Death Valley National Monument, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Buono, Anthony; Packard, E.M.

    1982-01-01

    Increases in dissolved solids have been monitored in two observation wells near Stovepipe Wells Hotel, Death Valley National Monument, California. One of the hotel 's supply wells delivers water to a reverse-osmosis treatment plant that produces the area 's potable water supply. Should water with increased dissolved solids reach the supply well, the costs of production of potable water will increase. The reverse-osmosis plant supply well is located about 0.4 mile south of one of the wells where increases have been monitored, and 0.8 mile southwest of the well where the most significant increases have been monitored. The direction of local ground-water movement is eastward, which reduces the probability of the supply well being affected. Honey mesquite, a phreatophyte located about 1.5 miles downgradient from the well where the most significant increases have been monitored, might be adversely affected should water with increased dissolved solids extend that far. Available data and data collected during this investigation do not indicate the source of the dissolved-solids increases. Continued ground-water-quality monitoring of existing wells and the installation of additional wells for water-quality monitoring would be necessary before the area affected by the increases, and the source and direction of movement of the water with increased dissolved solids, can be determined. (USGS)

  4. Assessment of Computer-based Geologic Mapping of Rock Units in the LANDSAT-4 Scene of Northern Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Short, N. M.

    1985-01-01

    Geologists obtain low accuracy levels when maps derived from LANDSAT MSS data are compared with those made by conventional methods. Procedures developed for the IDIMS computer system and used to classify a subset of a TM image of the Death Valley, California - Nevada border are described. Despite the superior resolution, broader spectral coverage, and greater sensitivity inherent to the TM, the actual recorded measured accuracy was in the same narrow range (30 to 60%) recorded for MSS data from earlier LANDSATs. The supervised classification approach appears to be superior to the unsupervised approach when applied to vegetation-sparse surfaces composed of spectrally contrasting rock/soil units distributed in relatively flat to low relief terrain. As spatial resolution improves and optimal spectral bands for identifying rock materials are specified, use of classified multispectral remote sensing data from air and space when coupled with supporting field calibration and checks should become the dominant way in which geologic mapping is carried out in future decades.

  5. Scientific innovation's two Valleys of Death: how blood and tissue banks can help to bridge the gap.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Sean D A

    2014-12-01

    Most biomedical basic research in the United States takes place at universities and research institutes and is funded by federal grants. Basic research is awarded billions of federal dollars every year, enabling new discoveries and greater understanding of the fundamental science that makes new innovations and therapies possible. However, when basic research yields an invention of practical use and the research evolves from basic to applied, the playing field changes. Pre-technology licensing federal dollars all but disappear, and innovations rely predominantly on private funding to support the full path from bench to bedside. It is along this path that the scientific advance faces two Valleys of Death. These sometimes insurmountable development stages are the product of the innovation's inherent financial, business and investment risks. Well-planned and executed in vivo studies using quality biological materials demonstrating proof-of-concept is often the key to bridging these gaps, and blood and tissue banks offer unique services and resources to enable this process. PMID:25457967

  6. Knowledge, transparency, and refutability in groundwater models, an example from the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hill, Mary C.; Faunt, Claudia C.; Belcher, Wayne R.; Sweetkind, Donald S.; Tiedeman, Claire R.; Kavetski, Dmitri

    This work demonstrates how available knowledge can be used to build more transparent and refutable computer models of groundwater systems. The Death Valley regional groundwater flow system, which surrounds a proposed site for a high level nuclear waste repository of the United States of America, and the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS), where nuclear weapons were tested, is used to explore model adequacy, identify parameters important to (and informed by) observations, and identify existing old and potential new observations important to predictions. Model development is pursued using a set of fundamental questions addressed with carefully designed metrics. Critical methods include using a hydrogeologic model, managing model nonlinearity by designing models that are robust while maintaining realism, using error-based weighting to combine disparate types of data, and identifying important and unimportant parameters and observations and optimizing parameter values with computationally frugal schemes. The frugal schemes employed in this study require relatively few (10-1000 s), parallelizable model runs. This is beneficial because models able to approximate the complex site geology defensibly tend to have high computational cost. The issue of model defensibility is particularly important given the contentious political issues involved.

  7. Simulated effects of climate change on the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    D`Agnese, F.A.; O`Brien, G.M.; Faunt, C.C.; San Juan, C.A.

    1999-04-01

    The US Geological Survey, in cooperation with the US Department of Energy, is evaluating the geologic and hydrologic characteristics of the Death Valley regional flow system as part of the Yucca Mountain Project. As part of the hydrologic investigation, regional, three-dimensional conceptual and numerical ground-water-flow models have been developed to assess the potential effects of past and future climates on the regional flow system. A simulation that is based on climatic conditions 21,000 years ago was evaluated by comparing the simulated results to observation of paleodischarge sites. Following acceptable simulation of a past climate, a possible future ground-water-flow system, with climatic conditions that represent a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide, was simulated. The steady-state simulations were based on the present-day, steady-state, regional ground-water-flow model. The finite-difference model consisted of 163 rows, 153 columns, and 3 layers and was simulated using MODFLOWP. Climate changes were implemented in the regional ground-water-flow model by changing the distribution of ground-water recharge. Global-scale, average-annual, simulated precipitation for both past- and future-climate conditions developed elsewhere were resampled to the model-grid resolution. A polynomial function that represents the Maxey-Eakin method for estimating recharge from precipitation was used to develop recharge distributions for simulation.

  8. Hydrogeologic evaluation and numerical simulation of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    D`Agnese, F.A.; Faunt, C.C.; Turner, A.K.; Hill, M.C.

    1997-12-31

    Yucca Mountain is being studied as a potential site for a high-level radioactive waste repository. In cooperation with the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Geological Survey is evaluating the geologic and hydrologic characteristics of the ground-water system. The study area covers approximately 100,000 square kilometers between lat 35{degrees}N., long 115{degrees}W and lat 38{degrees}N., long 118{degrees}W and encompasses the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system. Hydrology in the region is a result of both the and climatic conditions and the complex described as dominated by interbasinal flow and may be conceptualized as having two main components: a series of relatively shallow and localized flow paths that are superimposed on deeper regional flow paths. A significant component of the regional ground-water flow is through a thick Paleozoic carbonate rock sequence. Throughout the regional flow system, ground-water flow is probably controlled by extensive and prevalent structural features that result from regional faulting and fracturing. Hydrogeologic investigations over a large and hydrogeologically complex area impose severe demands on data management. This study utilized geographic information systems and geoscientific information systems to develop, store, manipulate, and analyze regional hydrogeologic data sets describing various components of the ground-water flow system.

  9. Trace Element Geochemistry of the Dolomite Member of the Neoproterozoic Ibex Formation, Death Valley National Park, CA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, E. E.; Lanids, J. D.; Quicksall, A. N.; Ddamba, I.

    2012-12-01

    This work examines the major and trace element geochemistry of the pink, laminated Dolomite Member of the Neoprotoerozic Ibex Formation, sampled at high resolution in the Ibex Hills of Death Valley, California. The Dolomite Member of the Ibex Formation directly overlies a basal conglomerate which has lead Corsetti and Kaufman (2005) to speculate that the juxtaposition of these units represents a diamictite - cap carbonate pair. Cap carbonates are inferred to represent deposition under high alkalinity conditions in the shallow ocean at the termination of low latitude glaciation. Increased alkalinity may be driven by the post glacial overturn of anoxic water masses. Here we infer paleoredox conditions during the deposition of the Dolomite Member of the Ibex Formation using trace metal enrichments. The Dolomite Member shows enrichments of Ni, Mo, Fe, Cu, V, Co, and Ba near the base of the unit, and also has a weak overall enrichment in Mn. The enrichment of these metals suggests a period of anoxia during the initial deposition of the Dolomite, and may signal the introduction of basin brines to the shallow ocean during marine transgression. These data are consistent with patterns observed in other cap carbonates worldwide, and support the speculation that the Dolomite Member is a cap carbonate. Alternatively, trace metal enrichments may reflect diagenetic alteration.

  10. Recharge response to interannual and multidecadal climate variability and implications for groundwater resources of the Central Valley aquifer, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuss, A. M.; Gurdak, J. J.

    2010-12-01

    Climate variability on interannual to multidecadal temporal scales has substantial implications for management and sustainability of water resources, yet are poorly understood throughout much of the United States. Climate forcings on these timescales partially control precipitation distribution, temperature fluctuations, drought occurrence and severity, streamflow, and recharge. Reliable predictions of future climate and subsequent adaptation of groundwater management strategies in vulnerable aquifers, such as the Central Valley aquifer located in central California of the United States, requires improved understanding of climate variability on interannual to multidecadal timescales and the associated responses in recharge rates. Groundwater withdrawals from the Central Valley aquifer are the second largest of all aquifers in the United States and are used to support one of the largest agricultural economies. However, the effects of the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) (2 to 6 year cycle), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) (10 to 25 year cycle), and Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO) (50 to 80 year cycle) on recharge rates and groundwater levels in the Central Valley aquifer previously have not been quantified. In this study, singular spectrum analysis (SSA) was used to identify the principal components of groundwater level time series from selected wells in Central Valley aquifer that contribute to the greatest amount of variance in the record. In each of the time series analyzed, the PDO was the most significant contributor to groundwater level fluctuations. Wavelet analysis was also used to examine the nonstationary phase relation of multiple time series to identify significance and duration of each forcing. A consistent phase relation of multiple signals suggests possible coherence between climate forcings and groundwater levels, and also indicates the effect of the PDO on groundwater levels. These findings support the conclusion that interannual to multidecadal climate variability, especially PDO, contributes to fluctuations in available groundwater in the Central Valley, and is therefore a necessary component of future water resource management. Findings from the Central Valley aquifer are presented within the context of the effects of climate variability on multiple aquifers across the United States, and support the use of spatiotemporal variations in recharge rates due to climate variability within adaptation strategies for groundwater sustainability.

  11. Source and composition of size fractionated aerosols collected in the Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, G.; Kelly, P. B.; Buchholz, B. A.; Clifford, A.

    2013-12-01

    The Central Valley in California has historically had high levels of atmospheric particulate matter (PM), resulting in significant adverse health effects. The three sources of atmospheric PM in the Central Valley are vehicle exhaust emissions, agricultural activity and residential wood burning. Ambient PM was collected during the winter of 2011 and 2012 in Davis, CA using a DRUM impact analyzer to determine the contributions of the various sources to the size fractionated aerosols. Laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (LDI-TOF MS) and radiocarbon accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) were performed on size fractionated atmospheric PM. The results show that as particle size decreases the amount of organic carbon increases. In the smallest size fraction (0.09 - 1.2 μm) the organic carbon encompasses approximately 70% of the LDI-TOF signal intensity. A comparison of the size fraction PM LDI-TOF spectra showed that there was a significant difference in the chemical composition with particle size. Three distinct chemical composition modes were observed in the LDI-TOF analysis: 0.09 to 0.34 μm, 0.34 to 0.56 μm and >0.56 μm. The particles <0.34 μm were found to be statistically different than those >0.5 μm. The chemical difference in the PM is driven by the large amount of secondary organic aerosol. Dicarboxylic acids, aromatic acids and nitrated aromatics were predominately found in particles <0.34 μm. The effect on human health of these compounds needs to be further explored. The difference in the chemical composition between the respirable and larger PM needs to be considered when associating health effects with PM exposure. The radiocarbon AMS analysis showed that the size fractionated total carbonaceous particulate matter was mainly biogenic in origin, having an average fraction modern (F14C) = 0.753 × 0.006. The F14C from both sample collections were similar and there wasn't a significant change in fraction modern as particle size decreased. The high fraction modern in the small PM points to the secondary organic aerosol being biogenic in origin. The data suggests the elemental carbon found in the large size fraction is biogenic, possibly from agricultural activity. Overall, the size fractionated PM was found to be a mixture of organic and elemental carbon originating from mainly modern carbon sources.

  12. A statistical learning framework for groundwater nitrate models of the Central Valley, California, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nolan, Bernard T.; Fienen, Michael J.; Lorenz, David L.

    2015-01-01

    We used a statistical learning framework to evaluate the ability of three machine-learning methods to predict nitrate concentration in shallow groundwater of the Central Valley, California: boosted regression trees (BRT), artificial neural networks (ANN), and Bayesian networks (BN). Machine learning methods can learn complex patterns in the data but because of overfitting may not generalize well to new data. The statistical learning framework involves cross-validation (CV) training and testing data and a separate hold-out data set for model evaluation, with the goal of optimizing predictive performance by controlling for model overfit. The order of prediction performance according to both CV testing R2 and that for the hold-out data set was BRT > BN > ANN. For each method we identified two models based on CV testing results: that with maximum testing R2 and a version with R2 within one standard error of the maximum (the 1SE model). The former yielded CV training R2 values of 0.94–1.0. Cross-validation testing R2 values indicate predictive performance, and these were 0.22–0.39 for the maximum R2 models and 0.19–0.36 for the 1SE models. Evaluation with hold-out data suggested that the 1SE BRT and ANN models predicted better for an independent data set compared with the maximum R2 versions, which is relevant to extrapolation by mapping. Scatterplots of predicted vs. observed hold-out data obtained for final models helped identify prediction bias, which was fairly pronounced for ANN and BN. Lastly, the models were compared with multiple linear regression (MLR) and a previous random forest regression (RFR) model. Whereas BRT results were comparable to RFR, MLR had low hold-out R2 (0.07) and explained less than half the variation in the training data. Spatial patterns of predictions by the final, 1SE BRT model agreed reasonably well with previously observed patterns of nitrate occurrence in groundwater of the Central Valley.

  13. Early Pleistocene Glacial Lake Lesley, West Branch Susquehanna River valley, central Pennsylvania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramage, Joan M.; Gardner, Thomas W.; Sasowsky, Ira D.

    1998-02-01

    Laurentide glaciers extended into north central Pennsylvania repeatedly during at least the last 2 million years. Early Pleistocene glaciation extended farther south into central Pennsylvania than any subsequent glaciation, reaching the West Branch Susquehanna River (WBSR) valley. Early Pleistocene ice dammed the northeast-flowing West Branch Susquehanna River at Williamsport, forming Glacial Lake Lesley, a 100-km-long proglacial lake. In this paper, we present compelling evidence for the lake and its age. Maximum lake volume (˜ 100 km 3) was controlled by the elevation of the lowest drainage divide, ˜ 340 m above sea level at Dix, Pennsylvania. Stratified deposits at McElhattan and Linden are used to reconstruct depositional environments in Glacial Lake Lesley. A sedimentary section 40 m thick at McElhattan fines upward from crossbedded sand to fine, wavy to horizontally laminated clay, consistent with lake deepening and increasing distance from the sediment source with time. At Linden, isolated cobbles, interpreted as dropstones, locally deform glacio-lacustrine sediment. We use paleomagnetism as an age correlation tool in the WBSR valley to correlate contemporaneous glaciofluvial and proglacial lacustrine sediments. Reversed remanent polarity in finely-laminated lacustrine clay and silt at McElhattan ( I = 20.4°, D = 146.7°, α95 = 17.7°) and in interbedded silt and sand at Linden ( I = 55.3°, D = 175.2°, α95 = 74.6°) probably corresponds to the latter part of the Matuyama Reversed Polarity Chron, indicating an age between ˜ 770 and ˜ 970 ka. At McElhattan, a diamicton deformed the finely laminated silt and clay by loading and partial fluidization during or soon after lake drainage. As a result, the deformed clay at McElhattan lacks discrete bedding and records a different characteristic remanent magnetism from underlying, undeformed beds. This difference indicates that the characteristic remanent magnetism is detrital. An electrical resistivity survey and drill borings define a buried bedrock channel at Bald Eagle near the drainage divide that is the proposed spillway for Glacial Lake Lesley. The highest terrace at Bald Eagle (Qt1 be) was truncated by the spillway channel. Age of Qt1 be is estimated as at least middle Middle Pleistocene to Early Pleistocene by correlation of soil physical properties on Qt1 be to soil chronosequences developed for Susquehanna River alluvial terraces, further downstream. This age is generally consistent with the age estimated from paleomagnetism.

  14. Conservation Effects Assessment Project-Wetlands assessment in California's Central Valley and Upper Klamath River Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    2011-01-01

    Executive Summary-Ecosystem Services Derived from Wetlands Reserve Program Conservation Practices in California's Central Valley and Oregon's Upper Klamath River Basin. The Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) is one of several programs implemented by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Since the WRP's inception in 1990, it has resulted in the restoration of approximately 29,000 hectares in California's Central Valley (CCV) and roughly 12,300 hectares in Oregon's Upper Klamath River Basin (UKRB). Both the CCV and UKRB are agricultural dominated landscapes that have experienced extensive wetland losses and hydrological alteration. Restored habitats in the CCV and UKRB are thought to provide a variety of ecosystem services, but little is known about the actual benefits afforded. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) California Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Unit in collaboration with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service surveyed 70 WRP sites and 12 National Wildlife Refuge sites in the CCV, and 11 sites in the UKRB to estimate ecosystem services provided. In the CCV, sites were selected along three primary gradients; (1) restoration age, (2) management intensity, and (3) latitude (climate). Sites in the UKRB were assessed along restoration age and management intensity gradients where possible. The management intensity gradient included information about the type and frequency of conservation practices applied at each site, which was then ranked into three categories that differentiated sites primarily along a hydrological gradient. Information collected was used to estimate the following ecosystem services: Soil and vegetation nutrient content, soil loss reduction, floodwater storage as well as avian, amphibian, fish, and pollinator use and habitat availability. Prior to this study, very little was known about WRP habitat morphology in the CCV and UKRB. Therefore in this study, we described these habitats and related them to ecosystem services provided. Our results indicate that although WRP in the CCV and UKRB provide a number of benefits, there may be management mediated trade-offs among ecosystem services. In this report, we considered ecosystem services at the site-specific scale; however, future work will extend to include effects of WRP relative to surrounding cropland.

  15. A statistical learning framework for groundwater nitrate models of the Central Valley, California, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nolan, Bernard T.; Fienen, Michael N.; Lorenz, David L.

    2015-12-01

    We used a statistical learning framework to evaluate the ability of three machine-learning methods to predict nitrate concentration in shallow groundwater of the Central Valley, California: boosted regression trees (BRT), artificial neural networks (ANN), and Bayesian networks (BN). Machine learning methods can learn complex patterns in the data but because of overfitting may not generalize well to new data. The statistical learning framework involves cross-validation (CV) training and testing data and a separate hold-out data set for model evaluation, with the goal of optimizing predictive performance by controlling for model overfit. The order of prediction performance according to both CV testing R2 and that for the hold-out data set was BRT > BN > ANN. For each method we identified two models based on CV testing results: that with maximum testing R2 and a version with R2 within one standard error of the maximum (the 1SE model). The former yielded CV training R2 values of 0.94-1.0. Cross-validation testing R2 values indicate predictive performance, and these were 0.22-0.39 for the maximum R2 models and 0.19-0.36 for the 1SE models. Evaluation with hold-out data suggested that the 1SE BRT and ANN models predicted better for an independent data set compared with the maximum R2 versions, which is relevant to extrapolation by mapping. Scatterplots of predicted vs. observed hold-out data obtained for final models helped identify prediction bias, which was fairly pronounced for ANN and BN. Lastly, the models were compared with multiple linear regression (MLR) and a previous random forest regression (RFR) model. Whereas BRT results were comparable to RFR, MLR had low hold-out R2 (0.07) and explained less than half the variation in the training data. Spatial patterns of predictions by the final, 1SE BRT model agreed reasonably well with previously observed patterns of nitrate occurrence in groundwater of the Central Valley.

  16. Evidence for a Putative Impact Structure in Palm Valley, Central Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamacher, D. W.; O'Neill, C.; Buchel, A.; Britton, T. R.

    2010-07-01

    Introduction: We present evidence supporting the impact origin of a circular structure located in Palm Valley, Central Australia (24° 03' 06'' S, 132° 42' 34'' E). The ~280 m wide structure was discovered using a combination of Google Maps and a local Arrernte Aboriginal oral tradition regarding a star that fell into a waterhole called Puka in Palm Valley, Northern Territory [1][2] (see [3] for details of the discovery). Geophysical Evidence: A survey of the structure in September 2009 collected magnetic, gravity and topographic data. Geophysical modeling of the data revealed the structure has a bowl-shaped subsurface morphology, as expected for a simple impact crater. Though the structure sits within the Finke Gorge system, the models do not support an erosional origin for the structure, as no buried channels are observed. Nor does the modeling fit a volcanic origin, as the density structure at depth is consistent with fractured sandstone/sediments. Geological Evidence: One channel runs out of the crater to the south, consistent with outflow from crater-filling events, but again not with an erosional origin for the structure itself. The microstructure of rock samples collected from the site revealed the presence of planar deformation features in the quartz grains. The coincident angle of the fractures is consistent with the crystallographic fracture directions under mild-end shocks. These grains probably represent local focusing of stress as the shock wave moved through the heterogeneous grain matrix, suggesting the conditions were right for the shock pressure to locally exceed the ~7.5 GPa required to form the features, even though the bulk of the shock pressure was much less. Conclusion: Based on the level of erosion and the absence of shatter cones and meteorite fragments, we estimate the structure's age to be in the millions of years. While the presence of shocked-quartz is a direct indicator of a cosmic impact, we cannot rule out that the quartz was transported from an older structure into the Hermannsburg sandstone as it was deposited. The ~22 km wide Gosse's Bluff impact structure, located ~40 km from Palm Valley, postdates the Hermannsburg sandstone, leaving a distal unidentified impact event as a possibility. However, the bowl shaped morphology of the Palm Valley structure, as well as the fractures on the structure's walls, support an impact origin. References: [1] Austin-Broos, D., 2009, "Arrernte Past, Arrernte Present", University of Chicago Press, pp. 37-38. [2] Róheim, G., 1945, "The Eternal Ones of the Dream: a psychoanalytic interpretation of Australian myth and ritual", International Universities Press, New York, p. 183. [3] Hamacher, D.W. & Norris, R.P., 2010, Using Aboriginal Oral Traditions to locate meteorite falls and impact craters. In Ilgarijiri - things belonging to the sky, edited by R.P. Norris, Proceedings of the symposium on Indigenous Astronomy held on 27 November 2009 at Australian Institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies, Canberra, Australia (in press).

  17. Data on ground-water quality for the western Nevada part of the Death Valley 1 degree by 2 degree quadrangle

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Welch, Alan H.; Williams, Rhea P.

    1987-01-01

    Water quality data for groundwater has been compiled for the Nevada part of the Death Valley 1 degree x 2 degree quadrangle which covers a portion of western Nevada. Chemical characteristics of the water are shown on a map (at a scale of 1:250,000) and on trilinear diagrams for the major ions. The data for the area are also presented in a table. (USGS)

  18. Coastal, valley, and oasis interaction: impact on the evolution of ancient populations in the South Central Andes.

    PubMed

    Varela, Héctor H; Cocilovo, Jose A; Fuchs, María L; O'Brien, Tyler G

    2014-12-01

    The existing biocultural links are analyzed among ancient inhabitants of the Cochabamba valleys (Bolivia) from the Formative and Tiwanaku periods, coastal and inland Azapa region (Chile) from the Late Archaic to the Late periods, and the Atacama Desert oases (Chile) from the Formative period to the time of European contact. Craniometric information obtained from a sample of 565 individuals from different sites of the studied regions was evaluated using methods derived from quantitative genetics and multivariate statistical analysis techniques. It is shown that during the Formative and Tiwanaku periods inhabitants of the Cochabamba valleys maintained contact with the population of northern Chile. This contact was more fluid with the people from the interior valley of Azapa than it was with the settlers of San Pedro Atacama (SPA). An important biological affinity in the Late Period between the inhabitants of the Azapa valley and the late SPA groups is also examined. The Late-Inca Catarpe SPA sample shows a broad genetic variability shared with the majority of the groups studied. The results reaffirm the differences between the coastal and interior Azapa valley groups and strengthen the hypothesis of two pathways to populating the south central Andean area. The divergence observed among subpopulations can be explained by the spatiotemporal dispersion between them, genetic drift dispersion compensated by the action of gene flow, and cultural norms that regulate within group mating. PMID:25234247

  19. Rock avalanche deposits in Alai Valley, Central Asia: misinterpretation of glacial record

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reznichenko, Natalya; Davies, Tim; Robinson, Tom; De Pascale, Gregory

    2013-04-01

    The reconstruction of Quaternary glaciations has been restricted by conventional approaches with resulting contradictions in interpretation of the regional glacial record, that recently have been subjected to critical re-evaluation. Along with uncertainties in dating techniques and their applicability to particular landforms (Kirkbride and Winkler, 2012), it has recently been demonstrated that the presence of rock avalanche debris in a landform can be unequivocally detected; this allows for the first time definitive identification of and distinction between glacial moraines and landslide deposits. It also identifies moraines that have formed due to rock avalanche deposition on glaciers, possibly with no associated climatic signal (Reznichenko et al., 2012). Confusion between landslide deposits and moraines is evident for ranges in Central Asia (e.g., Hewitt, 1999) where the least-studied glacial record is selectively correlated with established glacial chronologies in Alpine ranges, which in turn masks the actual glacial extent and their responses to climate change, tectonics and landsliding activity. We describe examples in the glaciated Alai Valley, large intermountain depression between the Zaalay Range of the Northern Pamir and the Alay Range of the Southern Tien-Shan, showing that some large Quaternary deposits classically interpreted as moraines are of rock avalanche origin. Sediment from these deposits has been tested for the presence of agglomerates that are only produced under high stress conditions during rock avalanche motion, and are absent from glacial sediments (Reznichenko et al., 2012). This reveals that morphologically-similar deposits have radically different geneses: rock avalanche origin for a deposit in the Komansu river catchment and glacial origin for deposits in the Ashiktash and Kyzylart catchments. The enormous Komansu rock avalanche deposit, probably triggered by a rupture of the Main Pamir thrust, currently covers about 100 km2 with a minimum estimated volume more than 1 x 109 m3. Another smaller rock avalanche deposit rests on the Lenin Glacial sediment in the neighbour Ashiktash river catchment, which was previously suggested to originate from Mt. Lenin (7134 m). The revised origin of these deposits highlights the role of rock avalanches in glacial activity and in the resulting glacial record in this valley and other actively tectonic areas of Central Asia. Although further investigation is required to detail the geneses, magnitudes and ages for these and other landforms in the valley, this study contributes explicit evidence for contamination of palaeoclimate proxies with data from non-climatic events, and reinforces the urgent need for revised interpretation of the glacial chronologies. Hewitt, K., 1999. Quaternary moraines vs. catastrophic rock avalanches in the Karakoram Himalaya, Northern Pakistan. Quaternary Research, v. 51, p. 220-237. Kirkbride, M.P., and Winkler, S., 2012. Correlation of Late Quaternary moraines: impact of climate variability, glacier response, and chronological resolution: Quaternary Science Reviews, v. 46, p. 1-29. Reznichenko, N.V., Davies, T.R.H., Shulmeister, J. and Larsen S.H, 2012. A new technique for identifying rock-avalanche-sourced sediment in moraines and some paleoclimatic implications. Geology, v. 40, p. 319-322.

  20. Hydrogeologic framework and occurrence, movement, and chemical characterization of groundwater in Dixie Valley, west-central Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Huntington, Jena M.; Garcia, C. Amanda; Rosen, Michael R.

    2014-01-01

    Dixie Valley, a primarily undeveloped basin in west-central Nevada, is being considered for groundwater exportation. Proposed pumping would occur from the basin-fill aquifer. In response to proposed exportation, the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Bureau of Reclamation and Churchill County, conducted a study to improve the understanding of groundwater resources in Dixie Valley. The objective of this report is to characterize the hydrogeologic framework, the occurrence and movement of groundwater, the general water quality of the basin-fill aquifer, and the potential mixing between basin-fill and geothermal aquifers in Dixie Valley. Various types of geologic, hydrologic, and geochemical data were compiled from previous studies and collected in support of this study. Hydrogeologic units in Dixie Valley were defined to characterize rocks and sediments with similar lithologies and hydraulic properties influencing groundwater flow. Hydraulic properties of the basin-fill deposits were characterized by transmissivity estimated from aquifer tests and specific-capacity tests. Groundwater-level measurements and hydrogeologic-unit data were combined to create a potentiometric surface map and to characterize groundwater occurrence and movement. Subsurface inflow from adjacent valleys into Dixie Valley through the basin-fill aquifer was evaluated using hydraulic gradients and Darcy flux computations. The chemical signature and groundwater quality of the Dixie Valley basin-fill aquifer, and potential mixing between basin-fill and geothermal aquifers, were evaluated using chemical data collected from wells and springs during the current study and from previous investigations. Dixie Valley is the terminus of the Dixie Valley flow system, which includes Pleasant, Jersey, Fairview, Stingaree, Cowkick, and Eastgate Valleys. The freshwater aquifer in the study area is composed of unconsolidated basin-fill deposits of Quaternary age. The basin-fill hydrogeologic unit can be several orders of magnitude more transmissive than surrounding and underlying consolidated rocks and Dixie Valley playa deposits. Transmissivity estimates in the basin fill throughout Dixie Valley ranged from 30 to 45,500 feet squared per day; however, a single transmissivity value of 0.1 foot squared per day was estimated for playa deposits. Groundwater generally flows from the mountain range uplands toward the central valley lowlands and eventually discharges near the playa edge. Potentiometric contours east and west of the playa indicate that groundwater is moving eastward from the Stillwater Range and westward from the Clan Alpine Mountains toward the playa. Similarly, groundwater flows from the southern and northern basin boundaries toward the basin center. Subsurface groundwater flow likely enters Dixie Valley from Fairview and Stingaree Valleys in the south and from Jersey and Pleasant Valleys in the north, but groundwater connections through basin-fill deposits were present only across the Fairview and Jersey Valley divides. Annual subsurface inflow from Fairview and Jersey Valleys ranges from 700 to 1,300 acre-feet per year and from 1,800 to 2,300 acre-feet per year, respectively. Groundwater flow between Dixie, Stingaree, and Pleasant Valleys could occur through less transmissive consolidated rocks, but only flow through basin fill was estimated in this study. Groundwater in the playa is distinct from the freshwater, basin-fill aquifer. Groundwater mixing between basin-fill and playa groundwater systems is physically limited by transmissivity contrasts of about four orders of magnitude. Total dissolved solids in playa deposit groundwater are nearly 440 times greater than total dissolved solids in the basin-fill groundwater. These distinctive physical and chemical flow restrictions indicate that groundwater interaction between the basin fill and playa sediments was minimal during this study period (water years 2009–11). Groundwater in Dixie Valley generally can be characterized as a sodium bicarbonate type, with greater proportions of chloride north of the Dixie Valley playa, and greater proportions of sulfate south of the playa. Analysis of major ion water chemistry data sampled during the study period indicates that groundwater north and south of Township 22N differ chemically. Dixie Valley groundwater quality is marginal when compared with national primary and secondary drinking-water standards. Arsenic and fluoride concentrations exceed primary drinking water standards, and total dissolved solids and manganese concentrations exceed secondary drinking water standards in samples collected during this study. High concentrations of boron and tungsten also were observed. Chemical comparisons between basin-fill and geothermal aquifer water indicate that most basin-fill groundwater sampled could contain 10–20 percent geothermal water. Geothermal indicators such as high temperature, lithium, boron, chloride, and silica suggest that mixing occurs in many wells that tap the basin-fill aquifer, particularly on the north, south, and west sides of the basin. Magnesium-lithium geothermometers indicate that some basin-fill aquifer water sampled for the current study likely originates from water that was heated above background mountain-block recharge temperatures (between 3 and 15 degrees Celsius), highlighting the influence of mixing with warm water that was possibly derived from geothermal sources.

  1. Rockfall hazard and risk assessment along a transportation corridor in the Nera Valley, central Italy.

    PubMed

    Guzzetti, Fausto; Reichenbach, Paola; Ghigi, Silvia

    2004-08-01

    Rockfalls are a common type of fast-moving slope failures, and in many countries they represent the primary cause of landslide fatalities. We present a methodology to ascertain rockfall hazard and to determine the associated risk along transportation networks. The proposed methodology is based on the combined analysis of the recurrence of rockfall events, determined from historical information, the frequency-volume statistics of rockfalls, obtained from inventories of recent rockfall triggering events, and the results of a physically based, spatially distributed rockfall simulation model used to determine rockfall hazard. The available information on rockfall hazard is combined in a Geographic Information System with a map of the transportation network to identify the road sections potentially subject to rockfalls. Information on the location and type of rockfall defensive measures, including revetment nets, elastic fences, concrete walls, and artificial tunnels, is used to estimate the efficacy of the defensive structures and to determine the level of the residual rockfall risk along the roads. To illustrate the methodology, we discuss an application in a 48-km2 area in the Nera River valley, in the Umbria Region of central Italy, where rockfalls are abundant, and where considerable investments were recently made to mitigate rockfall risk. PMID:15559944

  2. Comparison of Two Parametric Methods to Estimate Pesticide Mass Loads in California's Central Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Saleh, D.K.; Lorenz, D.L.; Domagalski, J.L.

    2011-01-01

    Mass loadings were calculated for four pesticides in two watersheds with different land uses in the Central Valley, California, by using two parametric models: (1) the Seasonal Wave model (SeaWave), in which a pulse signal is used to describe the annual cycle of pesticide occurrence in a stream, and (2) the Sine Wave model, in which first-order Fourier series sine and cosine terms are used to simulate seasonal mass loading patterns. The models were applied to data collected during water years 1997 through 2005. The pesticides modeled were carbaryl, diazinon, metolachlor, and molinate. Results from the two models show that the ability to capture seasonal variations in pesticide concentrations was affected by pesticide use patterns and the methods by which pesticides are transported to streams. Estimated seasonal loads compared well with results from previous studies for both models. Loads estimated by the two models did not differ significantly from each other, with the exceptions of carbaryl and molinate during the precipitation season, where loads were affected by application patterns and rainfall. However, in watersheds with variable and intermittent pesticide applications, the SeaWave model is more suitable for use on the basis of its robust capability of describing seasonal variation of pesticide concentrations. ?? 2010 American Water Resources Association. This article is a US Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  3. Comparison of two parametric methods to estimate pesticide mass loads in California's Central Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Saleh, Dina K.; Lorenz, David L.; Domagalski, Joseph L.

    2011-01-01

    Mass loadings were calculated for four pesticides in two watersheds with different land uses in the Central Valley, California, by using two parametric models: (1) the Seasonal Wave model (SeaWave), in which a pulse signal is used to describe the annual cycle of pesticide occurrence in a stream, and (2) the Sine Wave model, in which first-order Fourier series sine and cosine terms are used to simulate seasonal mass loading patterns. The models were applied to data collected during water years 1997 through 2005. The pesticides modeled were carbaryl, diazinon, metolachlor, and molinate. Results from the two models show that the ability to capture seasonal variations in pesticide concentrations was affected by pesticide use patterns and the methods by which pesticides are transported to streams. Estimated seasonal loads compared well with results from previous studies for both models. Loads estimated by the two models did not differ significantly from each other, with the exceptions of carbaryl and molinate during the precipitation season, where loads were affected by application patterns and rainfall. However, in watersheds with variable and intermittent pesticide applications, the SeaWave model is more suitable for use on the basis of its robust capability of describing seasonal variation of pesticide concentrations.

  4. Application of pesticide transport model for simulating diazinon runoff in California’s central valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joyce, Brian A.; Wallender, Wesley W.; Mailapalli, Damodhara R.

    2010-12-01

    Dormant spray application of pesticides to almond and other stone fruit orchards is the main source of diazinon during the winter in California's central valley. Understanding the pesticide transport and the tradeoffs associated with the various management practices is greatly facilitated by the use of physically-based contaminant transport models. In this study, performance of Joyce's et al. (2008) pesticide transport model was evaluated using experimental data collected from two ground treatments such as resident vegetation and bare soil. The model simulation results obtained in calibration and validation process were analyzed for pesticide concentration and total load. The pesticide transport model accurately predicted the pesticide concentrations and total load in the runoff from bare field and was capable of simulating chemical responses to rainfall-runoff events. In case of resident vegetation, the model results exhibited a larger range of variation than was observed in the bare soil simulations due to increased model parameterization with the addition of foliage and thatch compartments. Furthermore, the model was applied to study the effect of runoff lag time, extent of crop cover, organic content of soil and post-application irrigation on the pesticide peak concentration and total load. Based on the model results, recommendations were suggested to growers prior to implementing certain management decisions to mitigate diazinon transport in the orchard's spray runoff.

  5. Sex-related differences in habitat associations of wintering American Kestrels in California's Central Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pandolfino, E.R.; Herzog, M.P.; Smith, Z.

    2011-01-01

    We used roadside survey data collected from 19 routes over three consecutive winters from 200708 to 200910 to compare habitat associations of male and female American Kestrels (Falco sparverius) in the Central Valley of California to determine if segregation by sex was evident across this region. As a species, American Kestrels showed positive associations with alfalfa and other forage crops like hay and winter wheat, as well as grassland, irrigated pasture, and rice. Habitat associations of females were similar, with female densities in all these habitats except rice significantly higher than average. Male American Kestrels showed a positive association only with grassland and were present at densities well below those of females in alfalfa, other forage crops, and grassland. Males were present in higher densities than females in most habitats with negative associations for the species, such as orchards, urbanized areas, and oak savannah. The ratio of females to males for each route was positively correlated with the overall density of American Kestrels on that route. Our findings that females seem to occupy higher quality habitats in winter are consistent with observations from elsewhere in North America. ?? 2011 The Raptor Research Foundation, Inc.

  6. Drought resilience of the California Central Valley surface-groundwater-conveyance system

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, N.L.; Dale, L.L.; Brush, C.; Vicuna, S.; Kadir, T.N.; Dogrul, E.C.; Chung, F.I.

    2009-05-15

    A series of drought simulations were performed for the California Central Valley using computer applications developed by the California Department of Water Resources and historical datasets representing a range of droughts from mild to severe for time periods lasting up to 60 years. Land use, agricultural cropping patterns, and water demand were held fixed at the 2003 level and water supply was decreased by amounts ranging between 25 and 50%, representing light to severe drought types. Impacts were examined for four hydrologic subbasins, the Sacramento Basin, the San Joaquin Basin, the Tulare Basin, and the Eastside Drainage. Results suggest the greatest impacts are in the San Joaquin and Tulare Basins, regions that are heavily irrigated and are presently overdrafted in most years. Regional surface water diversions decrease by as much as 70%. Stream-to-aquifer flows and aquifer storage declines were proportional to drought severity. Most significant was the decline in ground water head for the severe drought cases, where results suggest that under these scenarios the water table is unlikely to recover within the 30-year model-simulated future. However, the overall response to such droughts is not as severe as anticipated and the Sacramento Basin may act as ground-water insurance to sustain California during extended dry periods.

  7. Data for ground-water test hole near Butte City, Central Valley aquifer project, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    French, James J.; Page, R.W.; Bertoldi, G.L.

    1983-01-01

    This report provides preliminary data for the third of seven test holes drilled as part of the Central Valley Aquifer Project which is part of the National Regional Aquifer Systems Analysis Program. The test hole was drilled in the SW 1/4 NE 1/4 sec. 32, T. 19 N., R. 1 W., Glenn County, California, about one-half mile south of the town of Butte City. Drilled to a depth of 1,432 feet below land surface, the hole is cased to a depth of 82 feet and equipped with three piezometer tubes to depths of 592 feet, 968 feet, and 1,330 feet. A 5-foot well screen is at the bottom of each piezometer. Each screened interval has a cement plug above and below it to isolate it from other parts of the aquifer , and the well bore is filled between the plugs with sediment. Nine cores and 49 sidewall cores were recovered. Laboratory tests were made for mineralogy, hydraulic conductivity, porosity , consolidation, grain-size distribution, Atterberg limits, X-ray diffraction, and chemical quality of water. Geophysical and thermal gradient logs were made. The hole is sampled periodically for chemical analysis and measured for water level in the three tapped zones. This report presents methods used to obtain field samples, laboratory procedures, and the data obtained. (USGS)

  8. Data for ground-water test hole near Nicolaus, Central Valley aquifer project, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    French, James J.; Page, R.W.; Bertoldi, Gilbert L.

    1983-01-01

    Preliminary data are provided for the third of seven test holes drilled as a part of the Central Valley Aquifer Project which is part of the National Regional Aquifer Systems Analysis Program. The test hole was drilled in the SW 1/4 NE 1/4 sec. 2, T.12N., R.3E., Sutter County, California, about 1 1/2 miles northwest of the town of Nicolaus. Drilled to a depth of 1,150 feet below land surface, the hole is cased to a depth of 100 feet and equipped with three piezometer tubes to depths of 311, 711, and 1,071 feet. A 5-foot well screen is set in sand at the bottom of each piezometer. Each screened interval has a cement plug above and below it to isolate it from other parts of the aquifer, and the well bore is filled between the plugs with sediment. Thirty-one cores and 34 sidewall cores were recovered. Laboratory tests were made for minerology, consolidation, grain-size distribution, Atterberg limits, X-ray diffraction, thermal conductivity, and chemical analysis of water. Geophysical and thermal gradient logs were made. The hole is sampled periodically for chemical analysis of the three tapped zones and measured for water level. This report presents methods used to obtain field samples, laboratory procedures, and the data obtained. (USGS)

  9. Data for ground-water test hole near Zamora, Central Valley Aquifer Project, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    French, J.J.; Page, R.W.; Bertoldi, G.L.

    1982-01-01

    Preliminary data are presented for the first of seven test holes drilled as a part of the Central Valley Aquifer Project which is part of the National Regional Aquifer Systems Analysis Program. The test hole was drilled in the SW 1/4 SE 1/4 sec. 34, T. 12 N. , R. 1 E., Yolo County, California, about 3 miles northeast of the town of Zamora. Drilled to a depth of 2,500 feet below land surface, the hole is cased to a depth of 190 feet and equipped with three piezometer tubes to depths of 947, 1,401, and 2,125 feet. A 5-foot well screen is at the bottom of each piezometer. Eighteen cores and 68 sidewall cores were recovered. Laboratory tests were made for mineralogy, hydraulic conductivity, porosity , consolidation, grain-size distribution, Atterberg limits, X-ray diffraction, diatom identification, thermal conductivity, and chemical analysis of water. Geophysical and thermal gradient logs were made. The hole is sampled periodically for chemical analysis and measured for water level in the three tapped zones. This report presents methods used to obtain field samples, laboratory procedures, and the data obtained. (USGS)

  10. Comparison of Summer and Winter California Central Valley Aerosol Distributions from Lidar and MODIS Measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lewis, Jasper; DeYoung, Russell; Ferrare, Richard; Chu, D. Allen

    2010-01-01

    Aerosol distributions from two aircraft lidar campaigns conducted in the California Central Valley are compared in order to identify seasonal variations. Aircraft lidar flights were conducted in June 2003 and February 2007. While the ground PM(sub 2.5) concentration is highest in the winter, the aerosol optical depth measured from MODIS is highest in the summer. A seasonal comparison shows that PM(sub 2.5) in the winter can exceed summer PM(sub 2.5) by 55%, while summer AOD exceeds winter AOD by 43%. Higher temperatures and wildfires in the summer produce elevated aerosol layers that are detected by satellite measurements, but not surface particulate matter monitors. Temperature inversions, especially during the winter, contribute to higher PM(sub 2.5) measurements at the surface. Measurements of the boundary layer height from lidar instruments provide valuable information need to understand the relationship between satellite measurements of optical depth and in-situ measurements of PM(sub 2.5).

  11. Geochemistry of natural gas manifestions from the Upper Tiber Valley (central Italy)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Vaselli, O.; Tassi, F.; Minissale, A.; Capaccioni, B.; Macro, G.; Evans, William C.

    1997-01-01

    Six natural gas manifestions from the upper Tiber Valley at Caprese Michelangela and Pieve S. Stefano (Arezzo) and at Umbertide (Pertugia) localities have been analysed for major, minor, trace gas compositions, as well as for ??13C in CO2 and CH4, ??15N in N2 and 3He/4He isotopic ratios. All gas emissions are CO2-rich (???94%), with N2 contents of 4-5%. Those from Caprese and Pieve S. Stefano have very peculiar compsitions when compared to other gases from northern-central Apennines. Apart from CO2, these gases show relatively high contents of He (with crustal isotopic ratios) and medium to high temperature-related gases such as CO, H2 and C6H6. Although located quite far from the geothermal areas in Tuscany, the application of several gas geothermetric techniques suggest for these gases deep equilibrium tempratures of about 300??C. Moreover, the ??13C in CO2 and CH4 (~.4.0% and -38.0%, respectively) and the ??13N values in N2 (+0.064 to +0.84%) would seem to imply a multiple deep source for these gases.

  12. Movement of Salt and Nitrate in Shallow Groundwater in California's Central Valley - Large Scale Water, Salt, and Nitrate Balance Calculations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalgish, B. A.; Boyle, D.; Kretsinger Grabert, V. J.

    2013-12-01

    A large-scale analysis of salt and nitrate was performed for the shallow groundwater aquifer of the entire California Central Valley floor (about 20,000 square miles). This analysis combined many different platforms of data in order to complete water and mass balance calculations. Groundwater and surface water quality test data were used in combination with mass loading from a watershed model (the Environmental Protection Agency's Watershed Analysis Risk Management Framework, or WARMF), as well as an integrated hydrologic model that simulates the use and movement of water coupled between the landscape, surface water, and groundwater (the U.S. Geological Survey's Central Valley Hydrologic Model, or CVHM). For this analysis, the Central Valley floor was divided into 22 zones, and the movement of shallow groundwater, surface water, salt, and nitrate was simulated in, out, and between the zones on a quarterly basis for a 20-year simulation period. In this analysis, shallow groundwater is defined by an estimate of the vertical distance water will travel from the water table within 20 years. Fluxes of mass from deep ambient groundwater and ambient surface water quality were estimated from measured concentration data. Quantities of mass were acquired for recharge (from WARMF output) or calculated using concentrations and other water budget components. Flow and volume components were extracted by post-processing CVHM output data. This resulted in a transient water, salt, and nitrate budget for each of the 22 zones. Simulated shallow groundwater concentrations were calculated to investigate water quality trends for the Central Valley. Four zones were identified as areas with the highest concentrations of salt (TDS) in the southwestern portion of the Central Valley; and six zones were identified as areas with the highest nitrate concentrations, mostly in the southeastern portion of the Valley. Additional analyses intended to shift from the large-scale balance calculations to a higher resolution analysis of the movement of water, salt, and nitrate was performed as a 'proof of concept' for two focus areas located in Stanislaus/Merced Counties and the Kings Subbasin, using MODPATH and MODPATH-OBS. Particle tracking was employed for both focus areas to observe the movement of water, salt, and nitrate from recharge zones to monitored wells, or on a cell-by-cell/layer-by-layer basis.

  13. Hydrology of Alkali Creek and Castle Valley Ridge coal-lease tracts, central Utah, and potential effects of coal mining

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Seiler, R.L.; Baskin, R.L.

    1988-01-01

    The Alkali Creek coal-lease tract includes about 2,150 acres in the Book Cliffs coal field in central Utah, and the Castle Valley Ridge coal-lease tract includes about 3,360 acres in the Wasatch Plateau coal field, also in central Utah. Both the Alkali Creek and Castle Valley Ridge coal-lease tracts are near areas where coal is currently (1987) mined by underground methods from the Cretaceous Blackhawk Formation. The Alkali Creek and Castle Valley Ridge areas have intermittent streams in which flow after snowmelt runoff is locally sustained into midsummer by springflow. The only perennial stream is South Fork Corner Canyon Creek in the Castle Valley Ridge area. Peak flow in both areas generally is from snowmelt runoff; however, peak flow from thunderstorm runoff in the Alkali Creek area can exceed that from snowmelt runoff. Estimated annual source-area sediment yield was 0.5 acre-ft/sq mi in the Alkali Creek lease tract and it was 0.3 acre-ft/sq mi in the Castle Valley Ridge lease tract. Groundwater in the Alkali Creek area occurs in perched aquifers in the Flagstaff Limestone and in other formations above the coal-bearing Blackhawk Formation. The principal source of recharge to the aquifers is snowmelt on outcrops. Faults may be major conduits and control the movement of groundwater. Groundwater discharges at formation contacts, between zones of differing permeability within a formation, near faults and into mines. Water sampled from 13 springs in the Alkali Creek area contained dissolved solids at concentrations ranging from 273 to 5,210 mg/L. Water sampled from 17 springs in the Castle Valley Ridge area contained dissolved solids at concentrations ranging from 208 to 579 mg/L. The composition of water from a recently abandoned part of an active mine the Wasatch Plateau closely resembles that of water discharging from a nearby mine that has been abandoned for more than 30 years. Mining of the Alkali Creek and Castle Valley Ridge coal-lease tracts likely will result in decreased pH and increased concentration of dissolved solids of the water that enters the mines. Even after mining, the water, especially in the Castle Valley Ridge area, may still meet Utah 's drinking water standards. (Lantz-PTT)

  14. Magnetic Orbital and Reversal Stratigraphy of the Johnnie Formation, Death Valley region, with implications for the Shuram Carbon Isotope Excursion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Minguez, D. A.; Kodama, K. P.; Hillhouse, J. W.

    2012-12-01

    This study demonstrates a ~720 kyr depositional period for 33 meters of dolomites from the Johnnie Formation at the Winters Pass Hills locality in Death Valley, CA. These dolomites have been shown to record the Shuram carbon isotope anomaly (Corsetti and Kaufman, 2003). We provide a new record of the anomaly that demonstrates the presence of the Shuram excursion from its nadir of δ13C= -12 ‰ to a recovered value of -8 ‰. By comparison to a full stratigraphic reconstruction of the Shuram Excursion by Verdel et al. (2011) the measured section from this study represents roughly 1/10 of the Shuram excursion, suggesting a 7.2 myr duration for the complete excursion, significantly shorter than the 50 myr estimate of Le Guerroué et al. (2006). The orbitally-forced stratigraphy used to make this measurement was obtained by performing multi-taper method spectral analysis on data series of magnetic susceptibility and a magnetically measured goethite to hematite ratio. Cyclic variations in magnetic susceptibility with wavelengths of 18.6 m and 5.4 m are observed in the spectrum above the 95% significance level with respect to the robust red noise and are interpreted to represent varying concentrations of paramagnetic clay particles forced by climate controlled weathering and transport of sediment to the ancient Laurentian passive margin. 0.63m and 0.71 m wavelength cycles with spectral peaks above the 95% significance level are also observed. A magnetic reversal stratigraphy developed by thermal demagnetization of oriented samples demonstrates three polarity intervals in the dolomites of the Winters Pass Hills, constraining the depositional period of the dolomites to <1 myr (estimate of magnetic reversal frequency for the Meso-NeoProterozoic based on Pavlov and Gallet, 2010). This suggests that cycles with wavelengths of 18.6m, 5.4m, and 0.71m represent long eccentricity, short eccentricity, and precession, respectively. The ratio of goethite to hematite also varies cyclically with wavelengths of 18.6m, 5.8m, and 0.63m. The goethite is most likely the product of present day weathering and may represent variations in depositional Fe-rich clay particles. These results replicate results obtained by Kodama and Hillhouse (2011) in the Nopah Range of Death Valley, approximately 40 km to the north. The Nopah Range rocks were deposited in a more distal sedimentary environment in the same depositional basin. The agreement between the two studies suggests a basin wide response to climatic forcing of depositional processes observable by the rock magnetic cyclostratigraphy. Assuming the period of Earth's long eccentricity has not varied significantly since the Ediacaran period (Laskar et al., 2011; Berger and Loutre, 1994) and that the magnetostratigraphy constrains the 33 m section to <1 myr, depositional cycles of 18.6m represent ~400 kyr, 5.4 m cycles represent ~116 kyr, and 0.71m cycles represent ~15 kyr.

  15. Mg- and K-bearing borates and associated evaporites at Eagle Borax spring, Death Valley, California: A spectroscopic exploration

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crowley, J.K.

    1996-01-01

    Efflorescent crusts at the Eagle Borax spring in Death Valley, California, contain an array of rare Mg and K borate minerals, several of which are only known from one or two other localities. The Mg- and/or K-bearing borates include aristarainite, hydroboracite, kaliborite, mcallisterite, pinnoite, rivadavite, and santite. Ulexite and probertite also occur in the area, although their distribution is different from that of the Mg and K borates. Other evaporite minerals in the spring vicinity include halite, thenardite, eugsterite, gypsum-anhydrite, hexahydrite, and bloedite. Whereas the first five of these minerals are found throughout Death Valley, the last two Mg sulfates are more restricted in occurrence and are indicative of Mg-enriched ground water. Mineral associations observed at the Eagle Borax spring, and at many other borate deposits worldwide, can be explained by the chemical fractionation of borate-precipitating waters during the course of evaporative concentration. The Mg sulfate and Mg borate minerals in the Eagle Borax efflorescent crusts point to the fractionation of Ca by the operation of a chemical divide involving Ca carbonate and Na-Ca borate precipitation in the subsurface sediments. At many other borate mining localities, the occurrence of ulexite in both Na borate (borax-kernite) and Ca borate (ulexite-colemanite) deposits similarly reflects ulexite's coprecipitation with Ca carbonate at an early concentration stage. Such ulexite may perhaps be converted to colemanite by later reaction with the coexisting Ca carbonate - the latter providing the additional Ca2+ ions needed for the conversion. Mg and Ca-Mg borates are the expected late-stage concentration products of waters forming ulexite-colemanite deposits and are therefore most likely to occur in the marginal zones or nearby mud facies of ulexite-colemanite orebodies. Under some circumstances, Mg and Ca-Mg borates might provide a useful prospecting guide for ulexite-colemanite deposits, although the high solubility of Mg borate minerals may prevent their formation in lacustrine settings and certainly inhibits their geologic preservation. The occurrence of Mg borates in borax-kernite deposits is also related to fractionation processes and points to the operation of an Mg borate chemical divide, characterized by Mg borate precipitation ahead of Mg carbonate. All of these considerations imply that Mg is a significant chemical component of many borate-depositing ground waters, even though Mg borate minerals may not be strongly evident in borate orebodies. The Eagle Borax spring borates and other evaporite minerals were studied using spectroscopic and X-ray powder diffraction methods, which were found to be highly complementary. Spectral reflectance measurements provide a sensitive means for detecting borates present in mixtures with other evaporites and can be used to screen samples rapidly for X-ray diffraction analysis. The apparently limited occurrence of Mg and K borate minerals compared to Ca and Na borates may stem partly from the inefficiency of X-ray diffraction methods for delineating the mineralogy of large and complex deposits. Spectral reflectance measurements can be made in the laboratory, in the field, on the mine face, and even remotely. Reflectance data should have an important role in studies of existing deposit mineralogy and related chemical fractionation processes, and perhaps in the discovery of new borate mineral resources.

  16. EFFECTIVE MODEL CALIBRATION OF THE GEOLOGICALLY COMPLEX DEATH VALLEY REGIONAL GROUND-WATER FLOW SYSTEM, NEVADA AND CALIFORNIA

    SciTech Connect

    G.M. O'Brien; F.A. D'Agnese; C.C. Faunt; W.R. Belcher

    2000-10-19

    A numerical ground-water flow model is being constructed for the Death Valley regional ground-water system, an area that encompasses approximately 80,000 km{sup 2} in southern Nevada and southeastern California. Effective construction and calibration of the regional-scale steady-state flow model, developed using MODFLOW-2000, is dependent upon integration of hydrogeologic data and parameter-estimation techniques. A three-dimensional hydrogeologic-framework model of the region was initially constructed to provide a conceptual model of the geometry, composition, and hydraulic properties of the materials that control the regional ground-water flow system. This framework was resampled at the scale of the flow model to define the hydrogeologic units present in each of the 15 flow-model layers. In addition, there are non-traditional types of geologic data in the hydrogeologic-framework model that are used during flow-model calibration. For each hydrogeologic unit, the spatial distribution of geologic features important to the hydrologic system is defined. The volumetric cells can be populated by various hydrogeologic data such as the hydrogeologic unit, lithology, hydraulic conductivity, faulting, tectonic features, stratigraphic or lithologic facies, porosity, and derivative data calculated from these attributes. The approach for using this arsenal of geologic data is dependent on utilizing parameter-estimation techniques available within MODFLOW-2000. The principle of parsimony is used throughout the flow-modeling process so that a simple conceptual model is methodically made more complex. Initially, the most basic conceptual model that could reasonably define the flow system was constructed and geologic units were grouped into four major hydrogeologic units. Only major geologic structures were included; there was little structural or stratigraphic differentiation, and a minimum number of parameters were used. As the calibration process progresses, additional complexity is added to the flow model. Evaluation of the flow model is based on analysis of several MODFLOW-2000 functions such as composite scaled sensitivity, weighted and unweighted hydraulic-head and flow residuals, comparison of parameter estimates with reasonable values based on previous studies, and parameter correlations. These functions provide information on whether the available hydraulic-head and ground-water discharge data are likely to be sufficient to estimate parameter values and to subdivide parameters into more detailed units. If sufficient data are available then a parameter can be subdivided into several parameters that represent specific distinguishing hydrogeologic features. For example, in the Death Valley region the lower carbonate aquifer is widely distributed and although regionally uniform, areas with unique hydrologic characteristics exist. Although the lower carbonate aquifer was initially considered one hydrogeologic unit with one set of hydrologic properties, it has been progressively subdivided into different structural and stratigraphic regions with unique hydrologic properties. The best flow model consists of the fewest number of parameters that can adequately describe the flow system and meet the modeling objectives.

  17. Sedimentology and progressive tectonic unconformities of the sheetflood-dominated Hell's Gate alluvial fan, Death Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blair, T. C.

    2000-05-01

    The Hell's Gate alluvial fan of northern Death Valley has an area of 49.5 km 2, a radius of 11.8 km, and a smooth 5-3° sloping surface interrupted by shallow (<0.5 m), radially aligned gullies 1-4 m wide. Facies analysis of 1-14 m high exposures at 45 sites reveals that the fan is built almost entirely by water-flow processes. Two facies deposited by sheetflooding dominate the exposures from apex to toe. The main one (Facies A), comprising 80-95% of the cuts, consists of sandy, granular, fine to medium pebble gravel that alternates with cobbly, coarse to very coarse pebble gravel in planar-stratified couplets 5-20 cm thick that are aligned parallel to the fan surface. Facies B, comprising 0-10% of the exposures, consists of 10-40 cm thick wedge-planar beds of sandy pebble gravel in backsets dipping 5 to 24°. Both Facies A and B are produced by infrequent sediment-charged flash floods from the catchment, and accumulate on the fan from supercritical standing waves of an expanding sheetflood. Antidune backsets are deposited during the buildup stage of the standing-wave cycle, and the couplets during the washout stage. The autocyclic growth and destruction of standing waves during a single sheetflood produces 50-250 cm thick sequences of multiple couplets with backsets. Couplets prevail over antidunes due to the selective preservation of deposits of the standing wave washout phase. Three minor facies comprise 5-20% of the fan exposures. The most common one (Facies D) is pebbly cobble gravel in lenticular beds typically 5-25 cm thick that overlie erosional scours into sheetflood deposits. It comprises gravel concentrated in gullies by fine-fraction winnowing of sheetflood units during recessional flood or by secondary overland flows. Though common on the fan surface, this facies is stratigraphically limited. Facies C consists of medium- to very fine-grained eolian sandsheet deposits 5-30 cm thick present on the distal fan in association with gully-fill gravel. It forms by wind reworking of the fan surface, and by sand transport from the adjoining erg. Facies C and D gully-fill and eolian deposits together comprise bounding beds that divide successive sheetflood sequences. They record secondary processes active on the surface between infrequent sheetfloods that mainly aggrade the fan. The fifth fan facies (Facies E) consists of lakeshore gravel deposited along the distal fan when it was transgressed by Lake Manly during latest Pleistocene time. The medial 3.8 km part of the Hell's Gate fan is uplifted and backtilted 1 to 16° into a tectonic ridge formed during strike-slip motion along the North Death Valley fault. Progressive intrafan unconformities, each likely initiated during one large earthquake, are common in these deposits. Two to eight sheetflood units capped by gully-fill or eolian facies are exposed within unconformity-bounded intervals, indicating that fan-aggrading catastrophic sheetfloods on a given part of fan are 2 to ≥8 times more frequent than earthquakes that cause backtilting.

  18. Impacts of Discharge Reductions on Physical and Thermal Habitat Characteristics in a Desert Spring, Death Valley National Park, California, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morrison, R. R.; Stone, M. C.; Sada, D. W.

    2013-12-01

    Desert springs are biodiversity hotspots that are sensitive to anthropogenic activities. Despite their importance, the effects of human disturbance on desert springs are not well known, and scarce information exists describing the biotic or environmental effects of incrementally increasing disturbance. The objective of this research was to quantify the influence of incremental reductions in discharge on the physical and thermal characteristics of a desert springbrook. This objective was accomplished through a combination of field experiments at Travertine Spring in Death Valley National Park, USA, and hydraulic/temperature modeling in order to: (1) quantify changes in physical characteristics of the springbrook channel and aquatic environment; (2) investigate the effects of reduced spring discharge on seasonal spatial temperature patterns; (3) delineate tipping points that exhibit a non-linear response to decreased flow. The study results supported our predictions that decreased discharge would modify physical habitat characteristics of the springbrook, reduce aquatic habitat volume, increase variability in water temperatures along the springbrook, and reduce springbrook suitability for invertebrates that require stable environments. Field observations revealed a significant relationship between water depth and flow velocity with reduced spring discharge. The rate of change of mean water depths, velocities, and habitat volumes were greatest with only a 10% reduction in spring flow. In addition, a non-linear temperature response to flow reductions was present under all modeled conditions. Generally, water temperature gradients increased as flows were decreased, and the sensitivity of reduced discharge increased with distance from the spring source. The degree of sensitivity was a function of season, which reflects the influence of ambient air temperature and wind in the cooling of the springbrook. These results suggest that habitat for species using stable thermal environments will decrease, and habitat for species adapted to variable environments will increase.

  19. Do phreatomagmatic eruptions at Ubehebe Crater (Death Valley, California) relate to a wetter than present hydro-climate?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sasnett, Peri; Goehring, Brent M.; Christie-Blick, Nicholas; Schaefer, Joerg M.

    2012-01-01

    Phreatomagmatic eruptions occur when rising magma encounters groundwater and/or surface water, causing a steam explosion and the ejection of country rock and pyroclastic material. The predominance of this type of activity at the Ubehebe volcanic field in northern Death Valley, California, is enigmatic owing to the extremely arid climate of the region. A novel application of 10Be surface exposure dating is presented to determine the timing of phreatomagmatic eruptions at Ubehebe Crater and to test the idea that volcanism may relate to a wetter than present hydro-climate. Twelve of the fifteen ages obtained lie between 0.8 and 2.1 ka, while three samples give older, mid-Holocene ages. The cluster between 0.8 and 2.1 ka is interpreted as encompassing the interval of volcanic activity during which Ubehebe Crater was formed. The remaining older ages are inferred to date eruptions at the older neighboring craters. The main and most recent period of activity encompasses the Medieval Warm Period, an interval of prolonged drought in the American southwest, as well as slightly wetter conditions prior to the Medieval Warm Period. Phreatomagmatic activity under varied hydrologic conditions casts doubt on the idea that eruptive timing relates to a wetter hydro-climate. Instead, the presence of a relatively shallow modern water table suggests that sufficient groundwater was generally available for phreatomagmatic eruptions at the Ubehebe site, in spite of prevailing arid conditions. This and the youth of the most recent activity suggest that the Ubehebe volcanic field may constitute a more significant hazard than generally appreciated.

  20. The Jaramillo Subchron: New Magnetostratigraphy and 40Ar/39Ar Dating in the Death Valley Region, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott, G. R.; Deino, A. L.; Gibert, L.

    2014-12-01

    The Jaramillo subchron was the normal polarity period before the present Brunhes chron. However, the Jaramillo's duration was only 10% as long as the Brunhes. Lasting only about 70 ka, the Jaramillo has frequently been missed (or is missing) from many magnetostratigraphic studies of the Early Pleistocene. We have examined two internally-drained basins with high sediment accumulation rates, that also contain Sanidine-bearing tephras. At Kit Fox Hills, in the Death Valley Basin, we sampled across 50m of tilted (45°) fine-grained sandstone/siltstone. A normal polarity magnetozone was delineated over ~12m of section (sedimentation rate of ~15cm/ka). We also collected 8 tephra beds, 4 of which are within the normal magnetozone, and 2 below and 2 above. To the east is the Tecopa Basin, which until the middle Pleistocene was internally-drained. We sampled through 36m of mudstones between the Tecopa Tuff (1.25 Ma) and the Bishop Tuff (0.77 Ma). A normal magnetozone was delineated over a 9m interval, ending 12.5m below the Bishop Tuff. A Sanidine-bearing tephra (previously unidentified) was found 4m above the base of the Jaramillo zone. There were 2 beds of reverse polarity within the Jaramillo zone, at 4.5m and 8m above the base. At least the lower one has been reported from other continental deposits (China, Spain). These sections should provide precisely calibrated chronostratigraphic tie points (approximately every 10-30 ka), providing sub-precessional level, direct geochronological control through the Jaramillo subchron. These sections are also being examined for paleo-environmental indicators (and minerals) that can be used to determine wetter or drier conditions (expanding saline lakes or dry playas). With all these event horizons (ash falls and polarity shifts), the Jaramillo has the potential to be used for high resolution, paleo-climate reconstructions on a regional scale.

  1. a Snowball's Chance in Death Valley: Re-Evaluation of the Number and Magnitude of Neoproterozoic Ice Ages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaufman, A. J.; Corsetti, F. A.; Marenco, P. J.

    2002-05-01

    The Neoproterozoic Ibex Formation, previously considered to represent a basinal facies of platform carbonates in the lower Noonday Dolomite, Great Basin, USA, is shown to rest on the eroded surface of the lower Noonday and older units. At the type section, the basal Ibex Formation consists of polymict conglomerate and laminated mudstone; the upper surface of the mudstone is pierced by large angular clasts of all underlying units, including distinctive lower Noonday tube stromatolites. A thin, finely laminated pink dolostone unit that records negative carbon isotope values caps the Ibex conglomerate. We interpret the erosional unconformity upon which the basal Ibex Formation is deposited to be glacioeustatic in origin, the basal conglomerate-pierced mudstone to be glaciogenic, and the overlying dolostone to be a classic cap carbonate. Above the cap dolostone marine transgression led to the deposition of deeper water ferruginous shale and limestone, which is overlain by dolostone as water depths again shallowed. These post-glacial Ibex carbonates also record negative carbon isotope values similar to upper Noonday lithofacies preserved on the platform. A notable oxidized paleosol occurs at the top of the upper Ibex dolostone immediately below a coarse sandstone correlative with the basal Johnnie Formation. Combined with the record of glacial sediments and cap carbonates from underlying units, in particular the Kingston Peak Formation, the Death Valley succession unambiguously records three discrete Neoproterozoic ice ages in a single continuous section. These new observations provide the lithological and geochemical proof that at least three, and potentially more, ice ages characterized Neoproterozoic time. As each sustained global glaciation represents a critical environmental hurdle, the number and the magnitude of discrete ice ages is an important constraint on the tempo of metazoan evolution.

  2. Response of Water Levels in Devils Hole, Death Valley National Park, Nevada, to Atmospheric Loading, Earth Tides, and Earthquakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cutillo, P. A.; Ge, S.

    2004-12-01

    Devils Hole, home to the endangered Devils Hole pupfish (Cyprinodon diabolis) in Death Valley National Park, Nevada, is one of about 30 springs and the largest collapse depression in the Ash Meadows area. The small pool leads to an extensive subterranean cavern within the regional Paleozoic carbonate-rock aquifer. Previous work has established that the pool level fluctuates in response to changes in barometric pressure, Earth tides and earthquakes. Analyses of these fluctuations indicate that the formation is a sensitive indicator of crustal strain, and provide important information regarding the material properties of the surrounding aquifer. Over ten years of hourly water-level measurements were analyzed for the effects of atmospheric loading and Earth tides. The short-term water-level fluctuations caused by these effects were found to be on the order of millimeters to centimeters, indicating relatively low matrix compressibility. Accordingly, the Devils Hole water-level record shows strong responses to the June 28, 1992 Landers/Little Skull Mountain earthquake sequence and to the October 16, 1999 Hector Mine earthquake. A dislocation model was used to calculate volumetric strain for each earthquake. The sensitivity of Devils Hole to strain induced by the solid Earth tide was used to constrain the modeling. Water-level decreases observed following the 1992 and 1999 earthquakes were found to be consistent with areas of crustal expansion predicted by the dislocation model. The magnitude of the water-level changes was also found to be proportional to the predicted coseismic volumetric strain. Post-seismic pore-pressure diffusion, governed by the hydraulic diffusivity of the aquifer, was simulated with a numerical model using the coseismic change in pore pressure as an initial condition. Results of the numerical model indicate that factors such as fault-plane geometry and aquifer heterogeneity may play an important role in controlling pore pressure diffusion in the Devils Hole area.

  3. Middle Pleistocene palaeoenvironments and the late Lower-Middle Palaeolithic of the Hrazdan valley, central Armenia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilkinson, Keith; Adler, Daniel; Nahapetyan, Samvel; Smith, Victoria; Mark, Darren; Mallol, Carolina; Blockley, Simon; Gasparian, Boris

    2014-05-01

    The palaeogeographic importance of the southern Caucasus in the Pleistocene as a region of population expansion and contraction between Africa, the Levant and Eurasia is well established as a result of recent archaeological works in the Republics of Armenia and Georgia. Not only does the area have a unique Palaeolithic record, but the presence of volcanic layers in association with archaeological sites and off site sequences means that there is the potential for both high precision dating and correlation. The Hrazdan valley, central Armenia is a case in point. Late Lower to late Middle Palaeolithic sites found as a result of systematic survey and then explored in excavations in 2008-2011 are associated with various volcanogenic strata. 40K/40Ar and 40Ar/39Ar dating in the 1970-2000s demonstrates the onset of volcanism in the adjacent Gegham range in the period 700-500ky BP, while recent 40Ar/39Ar dates on the latest lava from the Gutanasar volcano shows the latest effusive eruption to have occurred at c. 200 ky BP. Nine Middle Pleistocene lavas from the intervening period have been mapped in the Hrazdan valley in a 15km-long study area 12km north-east of Yerevan. Several of the basalts seal terrestrial strata, and thereby bury and 'fossilize' earlier landscapes. The most significant of these is sandwiched between basalts dating to 200 and 440ky BP, where a 135m-long exposure contains a palaeosol developing in floodplain alluvium and in situ archaeological material (Nor Geghi 1). Morphological and micromorphological examination of site strata suggest that hominin activity took place during a temperate episode, which 40Ar/39Ar dating of interbedded crypotephra suggests was MIS 9e. However, strata at other locales buried beneath the same 200ky BP basalt suggest that the landscape occupied by these hominids was a mosaic of river channels, floodplains and lakes. The fossilized MIS 9 landscape is not unique as further lacustrine deposits are buried beneath earlier Middle Pleistocene basalts, although earlier archaeological sites have yet to be found.

  4. Estimation of Evapotranspiration of Almond orchards using Remote Sensing based SEBAL model in Central Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roy, S.; Ustin, S.; Kefauver, S. C.

    2009-12-01

    Evapotranspiration is one of the main components of the hydrologic cycle and its impact to hydrology, agriculture,forestry and environmental studies is very crucial. SEBAL (Surface Energy Balance Algorithm for Land) is an image-processing model comprised of twenty-five computational sub-models that computes actual evapotranspiration (ETa) and other energy exchanges as a component of energy balance which is used to derive the surface radiation balance equation for the net surface radiation flux (Rn) on a pixel-by-pixel basis. For this study, SEBAL method is applied to Level 1B dataset of visible, near-infrared and thermal infrared radiation channels of MASTER instrument on-board NASA-DC 8 flight. This paper uses the SEBAL method to (1) investigate the spatial distribution property of land surface temperature (Ls), NDVI, and ETa over the San Joaquin valley. (2) Estimate actual evapotranspiration of almond class on pixel-by-pixel basis in the Central valley, California. (3) Comparison of actual Evapotranspiration obtained from SEBAL model with reference evapotranspiration (Eto) using Penman Monteiths method based on the procedures and available data from California Irrigation Management Information System (CIMIS) stations. The results of the regression between extracted land surface temperature, NDVI and, evapotranspiration show negative (-) correlation. On the other hand Ls possessed a slightly stronger negative correlation with the ETa than with NDVI for Almond class. The correlation coefficient of actual ETa estimates from remote sensing with Reference ETo from Penmann Monteith are 0.8571. ETa estimated for almond crop from SEBAL were found to be almost same with the CIMIS_Penman Monteith method with bias of 0.77 mm and mean percentage difference is 0.10%. These results indicate that combination of MASTER data with surface meteorological data could provide an efficient tool for the estimation of regional actual ET used for water resources and irrigation scheduling and management. Keywords: Evapotranspiration, Hydrologic cycle, SEBAL, net surface radiation flux, MASTER, NDVI, Penman Monteith, CIMIS, Surface Temperature

  5. Quaternary landscape evolution of tectonically active intermontane basins: the case of the Middle Aterno River Valley (Abruzzo, Central Italy)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Falcucci, Emanuela; Gori, Stefano; Della Seta, Marta; Fubelli, Giandomenico; Fredi, Paola

    2014-05-01

    The Middle Aterno River Valley is characterised by different Quaternary tectonic depressions localised along the present course of the Aterno River (Central Apennine) .This valley includes the L'Aquila and Paganica-Castelnuovo-San Demetrio tectonic basins, to the North, the Middle Aterno Valley and the Subequana tectonic basin, to the South. The aim of this contribution is to improve the knowledge about the Quaternary geomorphological and tectonic evolution of this portion of the Apennine chain. A synchronous lacustrine depositional phase is recognized in all these basins and attributed to the Early Pleistocene by Falcucci et al. (2012). At that time, this sector of the chain showed four distinct closed basins, hydrologically separated from each other and from the Sulmona depression. This depression, actually a tectonic basin too, was localized South of the Middle Aterno River Valley and it was drained by an endorheic hydrographic network. The formation of these basins was due to the activity of different fault systems, namely the Upper Aterno River Valley-Paganica system and San Pio delle Camere fault, to the North, and the Middle Aterno River Valley-Subequana Valley fault system to the South. These tectonic structures were responsible for the origin of local depocentres inside the depressions which hosted the lacustrine basins. Ongoing surveys in the uppermost sectors of the Middle Aterno River Valley revealed the presence of sub-horizontal erosional surfaces that are carved onto the carbonate bedrock and suspended several hundreds of metres over the present thalweg. Gently dipping slope breccias referred to the Early Pleistocene rest on these surfaces, thus suggesting the presence of an ancient low-gradient landscape adjusting to the local base level.. Subsequently, this ancient low relief landscape underwent a strong erosional phase during the Middle Pleistocene. This erosional phase is testified by the occurrence of valley entrenchment and of coeval fluvial deposition within the Middle Aterno River Valley. These fluvial deposits are deeply embedded into the lacustrine sequence, thus suggesting the happening of a hydrographic connection among the originally separated tectonic depressions. This was probably due to the headward erosion by streams draining the Sulmona depression that progressively captured the hydrological networks of the Subequana basin, the Middle Aterno Valley, the L'Aquila and Paganica-Castelnuovo-San Demetrio basins to the North. Stream piracy was probably helped by an increase of the regional uplift rate, occurred between the Lower and the Middle Pleistocene. To reconstruct the paleo-landscape that characterised the early stages of these basins formation we sampled the remnants of the Quaternary erosinal/depositional surfaces and reconstructed the ancient topographic surfaces using the Topo to Raster tool of ArcGIS 10.0 package. Finally we have cross-checked the geological and geomorphological data with the model of the Middle Aterno River paleo-drainage basin obtained through the GIS based method. References Falcucci E., Scardia G., Nomade S., Gori S., Giaccio B., Guillou H., Fredi P. (2012). Geomorphological and Quaternary tectonic evolution of the Subequana basin and the Middle Aterno Valley (central Apennines).16th Joint Geomorphological Meeting Morphoevolution of Tectonically Active Belts Rome, July 1-5, 2012

  6. Fish communities of the Sacramento River Basin: Implications for conservation of native fishes in the Central Valley, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    May, J.T.; Brown, L.R.

    2002-01-01

    The associations of resident fish communities with environmental variables and stream condition were evaluated at representative sites within the Sacramento River Basin, California between 1996 and 1998 using multivariate ordination techniques and by calculating six fish community metrics. In addition, the results of the current study were compared with recent studies in the San Joaquin River drainage to provide a wider perspective of the condition of resident fish communities in the Central Valley of California as a whole. Within the Sacramento drainage, species distributions were correlated with elevational and substrate size gradients; however, the elevation of a sampling site was correlated with a suite of water-quality and habitat variables that are indicative of land use effects on physiochemical stream parameters. Four fish community metrics - percentage of native fish, percentage of intolerant fish, number of tolerant species, and percentage of fish with external anomalies - were responsive to environmental quality. Comparisons between the current study and recent studies in the San Joaquin River drainage suggested that differences in water-management practices may have significant effects on native species fish community structure. Additionally, the results of the current study suggest that index of biotic integrity-type indices can be developed for the Sacramento River Basin and possibly the entire Central Valley, California. The protection of native fish communities in the Central Valley and other arid environments continues to be a conflict between human needs for water resources and the requirements of aquatic ecosystems; preservation of these ecosystems will require innovative management strategies.

  7. Principal facts for gravity stations in the Dry Valley area, west-central Nevada and east-central California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sanger, Elizabeth A.; Ponce, David A.

    2003-01-01

    In June, 2002, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) established 143 new gravity stations and 12 new rock samples in the Dry Valley area, 30 miles north of Reno, Nevada, on the California - Nevada border (see fig. 1). This study reports on gravity, magnetic, and physical property data intended for use in modeling the geometry and depth of Dry Valley for groundwater analysis. It is part of a larger study that aims to characterize the hydrologic framework of several basins in Washoe County. Dry Valley is located south of the Fort Sage Mountains and south-east of Long Valley, on USGS 7.5’ quadrangles Constantia and Seven Lakes (fig. 2). The Cretaceous granitic rocks and Tertiary volcanic rocks that bound the sediment filled basin (fig. 3) may be especially important to future modeling because of their impact on groundwater flow. The granitic and volcanic rocks of Dry Valley exhibit densities and magnetic susceptibilities higher than the overlaying sediments, and create a distinguishable pattern of gravity and magnetic anomalies that reflect these properties.

  8. 78 FR 76697 - The Central Valley Fund Il SBIC, L.P.; Notice Seeking Exemption Under Section 312 of the Small...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-12-18

    ... Business Investment Act, Conflicts of Interest Notice is hereby given that The Central Valley Fund II SBIC... Conflicts of Interest of the Small Business Administration (``SBA'') Rules and Regulations (13 CFR...

  9. Ethiopian Central Rift Valley basin hydrologic modelling using HEC-HMS and ArcSWAT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pascual-Ferrer, Jordi; Candela, Lucila; Pérez-Foguet, Agustí

    2013-04-01

    An Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) shall be applied to achieve a sustainable development, to increase population incomes without affecting lives of those who are highly dependent on the environment. First step should be to understand water dynamics at basin level, starting by modeling the basin water resources. For model implementation, a large number of data and parameters are required, but those are not always available, especially in some developing countries where different sources may have different data, there is lack of information on data collection, etc. The Ethiopian Central Rift Valley (CRV) is an endorheic basin covering an area of approximately 10,000 km2. For the period 1996-2005, the average annual volume of rainfall accounted for 9.1 Mm3, and evapotranspiration for 8 Mm3 (Jansen et al., 2007). From the environmental point of view, basin ecosystems are endangered due to human activities. Also, poverty is widespread all over the basin, with population mainly living from agriculture on a subsistence economy. Hence, there is an urgent need to set an IWRM, but datasets required for water dynamics simulation are not too reliable. In order to reduce uncertainty of numerical simulation, two semi-distributed open software hydrologic models were implemented: HEC-HMS and ArcSWAT. HEC-HMS was developed by the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACoE) Hydrologic Engineering Center (HEC) to run precipitation-runoff simulations for a variety of applications in dendritic watershed systems. ArcSWAT includes the SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool, Arnold et al., 1998) model developed for the USDA Agricultural Research Service into ArcGIS (ESRI®). SWAT was developed to assess the impact of land management practices on large complex watersheds with varying soils, land use and management conditions over long periods of time (Neitsch et al., 2005). According to this, ArcSWAT would be the best option for IWRM implementation in the basin. However, considering data uncertainty and model complexity a previous hydrologic assessment of the basin based in HEC-HMS simulation is advisable. As a first approach HEC-HMS was implemented for basin modeling in order to get physical parameters of interest, results from HEC-HMS calibration were used to setup the accuracy of the ArcSWAT numerical modelling. References Arnold, J.G., Srinivasan, R., Muttiah, R.S. & Williams, J.R. (1998). Large Area Hydrologic Modeling and Assessment Part I: Model Development. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, Vol. 34, No. 1, pp. 73-89. Jansen, H., Hengsdijk, H., Legesse, D., Ayenew, T., Hellegers, P. & Spliethoff, P. (2007). Land and water resources assessment in the Ethiopian Central Rift Valley. In Alterra report 1587. Wageningen: Alterra. p. 81. Neitsch, S.L., Arnold, J.G., Kiniry, J.R. & Williams, J.R. (2005). Soil and Water Assessment Tool Theoretical Documentation. Version 2005, Temple, Texas.

  10. Land-Use and Land-Cover Dynamics in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garedew, Efrem; Sandewall, Mats; Söderberg, Ulf; Campbell, Bruce M.

    2009-10-01

    Understanding the complexity of land-use and land-cover (LULC) changes and their driving forces and impacts on human and environmental security is important for the planning of natural resource management and associated decision making. This study combines and compares participatory field point sampling (pfps) and remote sensing to explore local LULC dynamics. The study was conducted in two peasant associations located in the central Ethiopian Rift Valley, which is a dry-land mixed farming area exposed to rapid deforestation. From 1973-2006, the area of cropland doubled at the expense of woodland and wooded-grassland in both of the study sites. Major deforestation and forest degradation took place from 1973-1986; woodland cover declined from 40% to 9% in one of the study sites, while the other lost all of its original 54% woodland cover. Our study concludes that assessing LULC dynamics using a combination of remote sensing and pfps is a valuable approach. The two methods revealed similar LULC trends, while the pfps provided additional details on how farmers view the changes. This study documents dramatic trends in LULC over time, associated with rapid population growth, recurrent drought, rainfall variability and declining crop productivity. The alarming nature of these trends is reflected in a decrease in the livelihood security of local communities and in environmental degradation. Given these dry-land conditions, there are few opportunities to improve livelihoods and environmental security without external support. If negative changes are to be halted, action must be taken, including building asset bases, instituting family planning services, and creating opportunities outside these marginal environments.

  11. Serosurveillance of infectious agents in equines of the Central Valley of Costa Rica

    PubMed Central

    Jiménez, D.; Romero-Zuñiga, J.J.; Dolz, G.

    2014-01-01

    Blood samples from 181 equines from the Central Valley of Costa Rica were collected in the year 2012 to determine the presence of antibodies against selected infectious agents in horses and to determine the risk factors associated with these agents. The presence of antibodies against Equine Infectious Anemia Virus (EIAV), Equine Herpes Virus 1 and 4 (EHV-1 and EHV-4), West Nile Virus (WNV), Influenza A Virus (IAV), Equine Viral Arteritis Virus (EVAV), Babesia caballi, Theileria equi, Neospora caninum and Chlamydia abortus was determined using commercial assays, and risk factors associated with seropositivity to the different infectious agents was established. The most seroprevalent agent detected was EHV-4 (96.7%), followed by WNV (44.2%), and IAV (41.8%). Horses >3 years, used for work or sports, and with access to pastures, had significantly increased probability to be seropositive to WNV, whereas horses used for breeding and recreational purposes, being stabled, and without access to pastures, had significantly greater probability to be seropositive to IAV. Seroprevalence to B. caballi (19.9%) was lower than to T. equi (38.1%). For B. caballi, access to pastures was determined as a risk factor, whereas being older than 3 years was established as a risk factor for T. equi. Low seroprevalences were determined for EHV-1 (5.0%), EVAV (5.0%), C. abortus (4.8%), and N. caninum (4.4%). Mares having history of abortion were more likely to be seropositive to EHV-1, whereas horses >3 years, used for work and sports, and mares having multiple parturitions, were more likely to be seropositive to N. caninum. None of the horses were seropositive to EIAV. Earlier, only diseases caused by EIAV, WNV and piroplasmosis were reported in Costa Rica. The present study however, determined the presence of carriers for EHV-1, EHV-4, and EIAV. PMID:26623349

  12. [Floristic composition and structure of a premontane moist forest in Central Valley of Costa Rica].

    PubMed

    Cascante, A; Estrada, A

    2001-03-01

    The floristic composition and structure of a premontane moist forest remnant were studied in the El Rodeo Protected Zone, Central Valley of Costa Rica. Three one-hectare plots were established in the non-disturbed forest, and all trees with a diameter at breast height (dbh) of 10 cm or greater were marked, measured and identified. The plots were located within a radius of 500 m from each other. A total of 106 tree species were recorded in the three plots. Average values: species richness 69.6 species ha-1, abundance 509 individuals ha-1, basal area 36.35 m2 ha-1. Total diversity was 3.54 (Shannon Index, H'), and the species similarity among the plots ranged between S = 0.68 and 0.70 (Srensen Similarity Index). Most tree species are represented by few individuals (five or less). There is a lack of emergent trees and arborescent palms in the forest canopy. According to the Familial Importance Value, Moraceae, followed by Fabaceae, Lauraceae, and Sapotaceae, largely dominates this forest. Pseudolmedia oxyphillaria (Moraceae) is the dominant species (Importance Value Index), accounting for 25% of all the marked trees in the plots, followed by Clarisia racemosa (Moraceae), Heisteria concinna (Olacaceae), and Brosimum alicastrum (Moraceae). The size class distributions were similar among plots, and in general followed the expected J-inverted shape. Differences in tree abundance, floristic composition, and spatial distribution of some species among the plots suggest heterogeneity of this ecosystem's arborescent vegetation. Moreover, it is an important natural reservoir for the conservation of rare and endangered tree species in a national level. Using these results as a baseline, this study should start a long term monitoring of the structure and composition of this very reduced and fragmented ecosystem. PMID:11795150

  13. Identifying Key Vulnerabilities in Current Management of California Central Valley for the California Water Plan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bloom, E.; Groves, D.; Joyce, B. A.; Juricich, R.

    2012-12-01

    The California Department of Water Resources (DWR), for its 2013 Update of the California Water Plan (CWP), is building new analytic capabilities for developing and evaluating regional and state-wide water management strategies. These strategies are intended to address growing and diverse water needs coupled with uncertain future hydrologic conditions and available supplies. Recognizing the significant uncertainty about future water management conditions, DWR is utilizing new robust decision methods to identify robust and adaptive water management strategies. This talk will describe a recently completed application of Robust Decision Making (RDM) for long-term water planning as part of the 2013 CWP Update. This analysis utilizes a new hydrologic / water management model of the Sacramento River, San Joaquin River, and Tulare hydrologic regions, running the model under hundreds of potential futures. These futures consider potential variation in demographic growth, land-use patterns, drought length and timing, and other climate factors from projections generated by downscaled global circulation models. Cluster-finding "scenario discovery" algorithms, applied to the resulting database of simulation model results, identify the key characteristics of future conditions where current management fails to meet a wide range of policy objectives. These "vulnerabilities" provide the foundation for developing more robust and adaptive response packages and the considering tradeoffs between such response packages. This analysis will provide guidance for considering response packages to meet the challenges posed by future conditions in the California Central Valley and provides a widely applicable new approach for making water management plans more cognizant and responsive to a wide range of uncertainties.

  14. Biological assessment of urban and agricultural streams in the California Central Valley.

    PubMed

    Bacey, Juanita; Spurlock, Frank

    2007-07-01

    This project was designed to establish baseline aquatic biological community structure and physical habitat conditions in select wadeable streams within the California Central Valley. A secondary objective was to evaluate possible water quality differences between site types and seasons. Two agricultural and two urban streams were monitored in spring and fall for two consecutive years beginning in the fall of 2002. Bioassessment sampling was conducted according to modified US EPA methods. The study included physical habitat assessment, water and sediment chemical analysis and characterization of the benthic macroinvertebrate community at each site. Water samples were analyzed for selected organophosphate insecticides, pyrethroid insecticides and herbicides, while sediment samples were analyzed for pyrethroids only. All sites had substantial physical habitat and water quality impairments, and the absence of pollution intolerant macroinvertebrates and dominance of pollution tolerant macroinvertebrates were indications of biological impairment. Due to the limited amount of water quality and pesticide data collected, it was not possible to definitively demonstrate any cause and effect relationships between BMI community structure and water quality or pesticide concentrations. Though most physical habitat parameters were similar and EPA physical habitat scores revealed on no significant differences between urban and agricultural sites (P=0.290), a significant difference was seen in substrate embeddedness (P=0.020). Dominant taxon found at all sites were chironomids, amphipods, and oligochaetes. Benthic macroinvertebrate metrics were significantly different between both types of sites (P=0.001) and seasons (P=0.014). Chironomidae taxon and those of the functional feeding group scrapers were greater at urban sites, while those of the functional feeding group filterers were greater at agricultural sites. In addition, the metric groups Chironomidae, filterers, and predators were found in greater numbers in the spring than the fall. PMID:17072545

  15. Late Quaternary Alluvial Fans and Beach Ridge Systems in Jakes Valley, Central Great Basin, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia, A. F.; Stokes, M.; Benitez, L.

    2002-12-01

    Alluvial fan and lake beach ridge landforms provide archives of the geomorphic response to Late Quaternary climate change within the Great Basin region. This study presents the first detailed results of landform mapping and soil characterization from Jakes Valley, a high altitude (1920m) and internally drained basin, located within a previously unstudied part of White Pine County, East-Central Nevada. Mountain front alluvial fans sourced from the White Pine and Egan Ranges (west-east basin margins) are characterized by four morphostratigraphic units: Qf0 (oldest) through to Qf3 (youngest). Analysis of the soil properties of these stratigraphic units reveals two landform-soil assemblages: 1) Qf0-1, characterized by well-developed calcic soils (stages III+ to IV) and 2) Qf2-3, characterized by less well-developed calcic soils (stages I to II). Beach ridge systems formed during pluvial lake highstands are extensively developed into the mid and distal parts of alluvial fans. Integrated field and aerial photograph mapping has revealed a sequence of between 4-6 ridges with linear and / or highly curved / arcuate morphologies. Beach ridge soil properties are characterized by less well-developed calcic soils (stages I+ to II) that are similar to soils formed in Qf2 alluvial fan units. The interaction between the alluvial fan and beach ridge landforms can be utilized to explore the geomorphic response in relation to climatic amelioration during the Late Pleistocene-Holocene transition. Of particular interest is the common occurrence of the curved / arcuate beach ridges which may correspond to a period of fan progradation coincident with base-level lowering.

  16. The role of cornice fall avalanche sedimentation in the valley Longyeardalen, Central Svalbard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eckerstorfer, M.; Christiansen, H. H.; Rubensdotter, L.; Vogel, S.

    2012-12-01

    In arctic and alpine high relief landscapes snow avalanches are traditionally ranked behind rockfall in terms of their significance for mass wasting processes of rock slopes. Cornice fall avalanches are at present the most dominant snow avalanche type at two slope systems, called Nybyen and Larsbreen, in the valley Longyeardalen in Central Svalbard. Both slope systems are situated on NW-facing lee slopes underneath large summit plateau, where cornices form annually, and high frequency and magnitude cornice fall avalanching is observed by daily automatic time-lapse photography. In addition, rock debris sedimentation by these cornice fall avalanches was measured directly in either permanent sediment traps or by snow inventories. The results from a maximum of 7 yr of measurements in a total of 13 catchments show maximum avalanche sedimentation rates ranging from 8.2 to 38.7 kg m-2 at Nybyen and from 0.8 to 55.4 kg m-2 at Larsbreen. Correspondingly, the avalanche fan-surfaces accreted annually in a~maximum range from 3.7 to 13 mm yr-1 at Nybyen and from 0.3 to 21.4 mm yr-1 at Larsbreen. This comparably efficient rock slope mass wasting is due to collapsing cornices producing cornice fall avalanche with high rock debris content throughout the entire winter. The rock debris of different origin stems from the plateau crests, the adjacent free rock face and the transport pathway, accumulating distinct avalanche fans at both slope systems and contributing to the development of a rock glacier at the Larsbreen slope system.

  17. Serosurveillance of infectious agents in equines of the Central Valley of Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Jiménez, D; Romero-Zuñiga, J J; Dolz, G

    2014-01-01

    Blood samples from 181 equines from the Central Valley of Costa Rica were collected in the year 2012 to determine the presence of antibodies against selected infectious agents in horses and to determine the risk factors associated with these agents. The presence of antibodies against Equine Infectious Anemia Virus (EIAV), Equine Herpes Virus 1 and 4 (EHV-1 and EHV-4), West Nile Virus (WNV), Influenza A Virus (IAV), Equine Viral Arteritis Virus (EVAV), Babesia caballi, Theileria equi, Neospora caninum and Chlamydia abortus was determined using commercial assays, and risk factors associated with seropositivity to the different infectious agents was established. The most seroprevalent agent detected was EHV-4 (96.7%), followed by WNV (44.2%), and IAV (41.8%). Horses >3 years, used for work or sports, and with access to pastures, had significantly increased probability to be seropositive to WNV, whereas horses used for breeding and recreational purposes, being stabled, and without access to pastures, had significantly greater probability to be seropositive to IAV. Seroprevalence to B. caballi (19.9%) was lower than to T. equi (38.1%). For B. caballi, access to pastures was determined as a risk factor, whereas being older than 3 years was established as a risk factor for T. equi. Low seroprevalences were determined for EHV-1 (5.0%), EVAV (5.0%), C. abortus (4.8%), and N. caninum (4.4%). Mares having history of abortion were more likely to be seropositive to EHV-1, whereas horses >3 years, used for work and sports, and mares having multiple parturitions, were more likely to be seropositive to N. caninum. None of the horses were seropositive to EIAV. Earlier, only diseases caused by EIAV, WNV and piroplasmosis were reported in Costa Rica. The present study however, determined the presence of carriers for EHV-1, EHV-4, and EIAV. PMID:26623349

  18. Land-use and land-cover dynamics in the central rift valley of Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Garedew, Efrem; Sandewall, Mats; Söderberg, Ulf; Campbell, Bruce M

    2009-10-01

    Understanding the complexity of land-use and land-cover (LULC) changes and their driving forces and impacts on human and environmental security is important for the planning of natural resource management and associated decision making. This study combines and compares participatory field point sampling (pfps) and remote sensing to explore local LULC dynamics. The study was conducted in two peasant associations located in the central Ethiopian Rift Valley, which is a dry-land mixed farming area exposed to rapid deforestation. From 1973-2006, the area of cropland doubled at the expense of woodland and wooded-grassland in both of the study sites. Major deforestation and forest degradation took place from 1973-1986; woodland cover declined from 40% to 9% in one of the study sites, while the other lost all of its original 54% woodland cover. Our study concludes that assessing LULC dynamics using a combination of remote sensing and pfps is a valuable approach. The two methods revealed similar LULC trends, while the pfps provided additional details on how farmers view the changes. This study documents dramatic trends in LULC over time, associated with rapid population growth, recurrent drought, rainfall variability and declining crop productivity. The alarming nature of these trends is reflected in a decrease in the livelihood security of local communities and in environmental degradation. Given these dry-land conditions, there are few opportunities to improve livelihoods and environmental security without external support. If negative changes are to be halted, action must be taken, including building asset bases, instituting family planning services, and creating opportunities outside these marginal environments. PMID:19688359

  19. Fluxes of BVOC and tropospheric ozone from a Citrus orchard in the California Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fares, S.; Park, J.; Weber, R.; Gentner, D. R.; Karlik, J. F.; Goldstein, A. H.

    2011-12-01

    Citrus plants, especially oranges, are widely cultivated in many countries experiencing Mediterranean climates. In many of these areas, orchards are often exposed to high levels of tropospheric ozone (O3) due to their location in polluted airsheds. Citrus take up O3 through their stomata and emit biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOC), which can contribute to non-stomatal O3 removal through fast gas-phase reactions with O3. The study was performed in a valencia orange orchard in Exeter, California. From fall 2009 to winter 2010, CO2 & water fluxes, together with O3 uptake and BVOC emissions were measured continuously in situ with specific sensors (e.g. fast ozone analyzer and Proton Transfer Reaction Mass Spectrometer) using the eddy covariance techniques. Vertical concentration gradients of these compounds were also measured at 4 heights from the orchard floor to above the canopy. We observed high levels (up to 60 ppb) of volatile organic compounds including methanol, isoprene, monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes, and some additional oxygenated BVOC. Methanol dominated BVOC emissions (up to 7 nmol m-2 s-1) followed by acetone. Monoterpenes fluxes were also recorded during the all vegetative period, with the highest emissions taking place during flowering periods, and in general highly temperature dependent. The orchard represented a sink for ozone, with uptake rates on the order of 10 nmol m-2 s-1 during the central hours of the day. We found that BVOC played a major role in removing ozone through chemical reactions in the gas-phase, while only up to 40 % of ozone was removed via stomatal uptake. The current research aimed at investigating the fate of BVOC emitted from orange trees will help understanding the role of Citrus orchards in the complex oxidation mechanisms taking place in the polluted atmosphere of the San Joaquin Valley (California).

  20. Rainwater harvesting for small-scale irrigation of maize in the Central Rift Valley, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keesstra, Saskia; Hartog, Maaike; Muluneh, Alemayehu; Stroosnijder, Leo

    2013-04-01

    In the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia, small scale farmers mostly rely on rainfall for crop production. The erratic nature of rainfall causes frequent crop failures and makes the region structurally dependent on food aid. Rainwater Harvesting (RWH) is a technique to collect and store runoff that could provide water for livestock, domestic use or small scale irrigation. Usually, such irrigation is promoted for high value crops, but in the light of regional food security it may become interesting to invest in irrigation of maize. In this research, two cemented RWH cisterns were investigated to determine their economic and social potential for supplemental irrigation of maize using drip irrigation. For this, data from test fields with irrigated maize and monitoring of water levels of the cisterns were used, as well as a survey under 30 farmers living close to the experimental site. The results show that catchment size and management should be in balance with the designed RWH system, to prevent too little runoff or flooding. An analysis with Cropwat 8.0 was used to investigate the possibility of irrigating maize with the observed amounts of water in the RWH cisterns. This would suffice for 0.3-0.8 ha of maize. For a RWH cistern with a drip irrigation system to be economically viable, the production on this acreage should become 3-4 ton/ha; 2.5 times higher than the current yield. But the biggest challenge would be to change the perception of respondents, who don't find it logical to spend precious water on a common crop like maize. Therefore, if the Ethiopian government considers the irrigation of maize to be important for regional food security, it is recommended to either subsidize the construction of RWH cisterns or provide credit on favourable terms.

  1. Modeling Land Application of Food-Processing Wastewater in the Central Valley, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rubin, Y.; Benito, P.; Miller, G.; McLaughlin, J.; Hou, Z.; Hermanowicz, S.; Mayer, U.

    2007-12-01

    California's Central Valley contains over 640 food-processing plants, serving a multi-billion dollar agricultural industry. These processors consume approximately 7.9 x 107 m3 of water per year. Approximately 80% of these processors discharge the resulting wastewater, which is typically high in organic matter, nitrogen, and salts, to land, and many of these use land application as a treatment method. Initial investigations revealed elevated salinity levels to be the most common form of groundwater degradation near land application sites, followed by concentrations of nitrogen compounds, namely ammonia and nitrate. Enforcement actions have been taken against multiple food processors, and the regulatory boards have begun to re-examine the land disposal permitting process. This paper summarizes a study that was commissioned in support of these actions. The study has multiple components which will be reviewed briefly, including: (1) characterization of the food-processing related waste stream; (2) fate and transport of the effluent waste stream in the unsaturated zone at the land application sites; (3) fate and transport of the effluent waste stream at the regional scale; (4) predictive uncertainty due to spatial variability and data scarcity at the land application sites and at the regional scale; (5) problem mitigation through off-site and in-situ actions; (6) long-term solutions. The emphasis of the talk will be placed on presenting and demonstrating a stochastic framework for modeling the transport and attenuation of these wastes in the vadose zone and in the saturated zone, and the related site characterization needs, as affected by site conditions, water table depth, waste water application rate, and waste constituent concentrations.

  2. A Conceptual Model for Floodplains in California's Central Valley and a Method for Identifying Representative Floods and Floodplains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Opperman, J. J.; Andrews, E.; Bozkurt, S.; Mount, J. F.; Moyle, P. B.

    2005-05-01

    Currently, significant resources are being invested in restoring native species and ecosystems in California's Central Valley and the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, led by the California Bay-Delta Authority (CBDA). Functioning floodplains provide numerous ecological benefits and floodplain restoration is emerging as important component of ecosystem restoration in this region. We developed a conceptual model that describes the linkages between physical (hydrologic and geomorphic) processes and ecosystem processes and responses on Central Valley floodplains. Central to this model is the role of hydrological variability in driving topographic diversity, ecosystem heterogeneity and ecological processes. We attempt to capture the extremely complex linkages between hydrological variability and ecosystem response through `representative floods.' A representative flood encompasses a set of hydrological variables, such as frequency and duration, which produce a characteristic suite of ecological benefits. For example, frequent, long duration flooding in the spring provides spawning and rearing habitat for native fish and promotes high phytoplankton productivity which can be exported to riverine and delta ecosystems. Less frequent, higher magnitude floods drive extensive geomorphic change upon the floodplain, creating topographic and, ultimately, ecological heterogeneity. Here we describe a process to define, map, and quantify the area inundated by a particular representative flood in the Sacramento River valley. To illustrate we identify the area inundated by a frequent (exceedance probability of 67%), long duration (> 7 days) flood that occurs in the spring. We used paired gauges to find the stage corresponding to the representative flood parameters and compared a plane connecting the gauges to topography in the intervening reach of river. We found that this type of representative flood inundates very little area in the Sacramento Valley; primary areas of inundation are within the Yolo Bypass, an engineered floodplain that flanks the Sacramento River. This analysis can be used to identify areas of floodplain that potentially provide the ecological benefits described in the conceptual model and can guide restoration programs seeking to increase these benefits.

  3. A detailed lithologic study of glacially buried valley in central Champaign County, Ohio

    SciTech Connect

    Schilling, D.J.; Dominic, D.F. . Dept. of Geological Sciences)

    1994-04-01

    Previous subsurface mapping in this area has identified a bedrock valley (Teays), which trends southeast to northwest and has a maximum depth of 135 m and width of 7 km. The valley is largely filled with outwash and is flanked on the east by moraines. This study focuses on the details of the sedimentary fill in the valley; it was spurred by proposed highway construction and its possible effects on a nearby fen. In addition to the surficial geology map of the county, lithologic interpretations were based on logs of water wells, and lithologic logs of 43 wells drilled by Wright State University to evaluate the stratigraphy of the valley, together with 26 gamma logs of these holes. The well logs were interpreted in terms of seven standardized lithologies and then correlated as depositional units on cross sections.

  4. Late Holocene glacial history of the Copper River Delta, coastal south-central Alaska, and controls on valley glacier fluctuations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barclay, David J.; Yager, Elowyn M.; Graves, Jason; Kloczko, Michael; Calkin, Parker E.

    2013-12-01

    Fluctuations of four valley glaciers in coastal south-central Alaska are reconstructed for the past two millennia. Tree-ring crossdates on 216 glacially killed stumps and logs provide the primary age control, and are integrated with glacial stratigraphy, ages of living trees on extant landforms, and historic forefield photographs to constrain former ice margin positions. Sheridan Glacier shows four distinct phases of advance: in the 530s to c.640s in the First Millennium A.D., and the 1240s to 1280s, 1510s to 1700s, and c.1810s to 1860s during the Little Ice Age (LIA). The latter two LIA advances are also recorded on the forefields of nearby Scott, Sherman and Saddlebag glaciers. Comparison of the Sheridan record with other two-millennia long tree-ring constrained valley glacier histories from south-central Alaska and Switzerland shows the same four intervals of advance. These expansions were coeval with decreases in insolation, supporting solar irradiance as the primary pacemaker for centennial-scale fluctuations of mid-latitude valley glaciers prior to the 20th century. Volcanic aerosols, coupled atmospheric-oceanic systems, and local glacier-specific effects may be important to glacier fluctuations as supplemental forcing factors, for causing decadal-scale differences between regions, and as a climatic filter affecting the magnitude of advances.

  5. Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B and C Infections among Healthy Volunteer Blood Donors in the Central California Valley

    PubMed Central

    Atla, Pradeep R.; Ameer, Adnan; Sadiq, Humaira; Sadler, Patrick C.

    2013-01-01

    Background/Aims The Central California Valley has a diverse population with significant proportions of Hispanics and Asians. This cross-sectional study was conducted to evaluate the prevalence of hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) in healthy blood donors in the Valley. Methods A total of 217,738 voluntary blood donors were identified between 2006 and 2010 (36,795 first-time donors; 180,943 repeat donors). Results Among the first-time donors, the HBV and HCV prevalence was 0.28% and 0.52%, respectively. Higher HBV prevalence seen in Asians (3%) followed by Caucasians (0.05%), African Americans (0.15%), and Hispanics (0.05%). Hmong had a HBV prevalence of 7.63% with a peak prevalence of 8.76% among the 16- to 35-year-old age group. Highest HCV prevalence in Native Americans (2.8) followed by Caucasians (0.59%), Hispanics (0.45%), African Americans (0.38%), and Asians (0.2%). Conclusions Ethnic disparities persist with regard to the prevalence of HBV and HCV in the Central California Valley. The reported prevalence may be an underestimate because our study enrolled healthy volunteer blood donors only. The development of aggressive public health measures to evaluate the true prevalence of HBV and HCV and to identify those in need of HBV and HCV prevention measures and therapy is critically important. PMID:23423771

  6. Data network, collection, and analysis in the Diamond Valley flow system, central Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knochenmus, Lari A.; Berger, David L.; Moreo, Michael T.; Smith, J. LaRue

    2011-01-01

    Future groundwater development and its effect on future municipal, irrigation, and alternative energy uses in the Diamond Valley flow system are of concern for officials in Eureka County, Nevada. To provide a better understanding of the groundwater resources, the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with Eureka County, commenced a multi-phase study of the Diamond Valley flow system in 2005. Groundwater development primarily in southern Diamond Valley has resulted in water-level declines since the 1960s ranging from less than 5 to 100 feet. Groundwater resources in the Diamond Valley flow system outside of southern Diamond Valley have been relatively undeveloped. Data collected during phase 2 of the study (2006-09) included micrometeorological data at 4 evapotranspiration stations, 3 located in natural vegetation and 1 located in an agricultural field; groundwater levels in 95 wells; water-quality constituents in aquifers and springs at 21 locations; lithologic information from 7 recently drilled wells; and geophysical logs from 3 well sites. This report describes what was accomplished during phase 2 of the study, provides the data collected, and presents the approaches to strengthen relations between evapotranspiration rates measured at micrometeorological stations and spatially distributed groundwater discharge. This report also presents the approach to improve delineation of areas of groundwater discharge and describes the current methodology used to improve the accuracy of spatially distributed groundwater discharge rates in the Diamond Valley flow system.

  7. Simulation of net infiltration and potential recharge using a distributed-parameter watershed model of the Death Valley region, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hevesi, Joseph A.; Flint, Alan L.; Flint, Lorraine E.

    2003-01-01

    This report presents the development and application of the distributed-parameter watershed model, INFILv3, for estimating the temporal and spatial distribution of net infiltration and potential recharge in the Death Valley region, Nevada and California. The estimates of net infiltration quantify the downward drainage of water across the lower boundary of the root zone and are used to indicate potential recharge under variable climate conditions and drainage basin characteristics. Spatial variability in recharge in the Death Valley region likely is high owing to large differences in precipitation, potential evapotranspiration, bedrock permeability, soil thickness, vegetation characteristics, and contributions to recharge along active stream channels. The quantity and spatial distribution of recharge representing the effects of variable climatic conditions and drainage basin characteristics on recharge are needed to reduce uncertainty in modeling ground-water flow. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Department of Energy, developed a regional saturated-zone ground-water flow model of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system to help evaluate the current hydrogeologic system and the potential effects of natural or human-induced changes. Although previous estimates of recharge have been made for most areas of the Death Valley region, including the area defined by the boundary of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, the uncertainty of these estimates is high, and the spatial and temporal variability of the recharge in these basins has not been quantified. To estimate the magnitude and distribution of potential recharge in response to variable climate and spatially varying drainage basin characteristics, the INFILv3 model uses a daily water-balance model of the root zone with a primarily deterministic representation of the processes controlling net infiltration and potential recharge. The daily water balance includes precipitation (as either rain or snow), snow accumulation, sublimation, snowmelt, infiltration into the root zone, evapotranspiration, drainage, water content change throughout the root-zone profile (represented as a 6-layered system), runoff (defined as excess rainfall and snowmelt) and surface water run-on (defined as runoff that is routed downstream), and net infiltration (simulated as drainage from the bottom root-zone layer). Potential evapotranspiration is simulated using an hourly solar radiation model to simulate daily net radiation, and daily evapotranspiration is simulated as an empirical function of root zone water content and potential evapotranspiration. The model uses daily climate records of precipitation and air temperature from a regionally distributed network of 132 climate stations and a spatially distributed representation of drainage basin characteristics defined by topography, geology, soils, and vegetation to simulate daily net infiltration at all locations, including stream channels with intermittent streamflow in response to runoff from rain and snowmelt. The temporal distribution of daily, monthly, and annual net infiltration can be used to evaluate the potential effect of future climatic conditions on potential recharge. The INFILv3 model inputs representing drainage basin characteristics were developed using a geographic information system (GIS) to define a set of spatially distributed input parameters uniquely assigned to each grid cell of the INFILv3 model grid. The model grid, which was defined by a digital elevation model (DEM) of the Death Valley region, consists of 1,252,418 model grid cells with a uniform grid cell dimension of 278.5 meters in the north-south and east-west directions. The elevation values from the DEM were used with monthly regression models developed from the daily climate data to estimate the spatial distribution of daily precipitation and air temperature. The elevation values were also used to simulate atmosp

  8. Hydrochemistry of the Mahomet Bedrock Valley Aquifer, East-Central Illinois: indicators of recharge and ground-water flow

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Panno, S.V.; Hackley, Keith C.; Cartwright, K.; Liu, Chao-Li

    1994-01-01

    A conceptual model of the ground-water flow and recharge to the Mahomet Bedrock Valley Aquifer (MVA), east-central Illinois, was developed using major ion chemistry and isotope geochemistry. The MVA is a 'basal' fill in the east-west trending buried bedrock valley composed of clean, permeable sand and gravel to thicknesses of up to 61 m. It is covered by a thick sequence of glacial till containing thinner bodies of interbedded sand and gravel. Ground water from the MVA was found to be characterized by clearly defined geochemical regions with three distinct ground-water types. A fourth ground-water type was found at the confluence of the MVA and the Mackinaw Bedrock Valley Aquifer (MAK) to the west. Ground water in the Onarga Valley, a northeastern tributary of the MVA, is of two types, a mixed cation-SO42- type and a mixed cation-HCO3- type. The ground water is enriched in Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, and SO42- which appears to be the result of an upward hydraulic gradient and interaction of deeper ground water with oxidized pyritic coals and shale. We suggest that recharge to the Onarga Valley and overlying aquifers is 100% from bedrock (leakage) and lateral flow from the MVA to the south. The central MVA (south of the Onarga Valley) is composed of relatively dilute ground water of a mixed cation-HCO3- type, with low total dissolved solids, and very low concentrations of Cl- and SO42-. Stratigraphic relationships of overlying aquifers and ground-water chemistry of these and the MVA suggest recharge to this region of the MVA (predominantly in Champaign County) is relatively rapid and primarily from the surface. Midway along the westerly flow path of the MVA (western MVA), ground water is a mixed cation-HCO3- type with relatively high Cl-, where Cl- increases abruptly by one to ??? two orders of magnitude. Data suggest that the increase in Cl- is the result of leakage of saline ground water from bedrock into the MVA. Mass-balance calculations indicate that approximately 9.5% of recharge in this area is from bedrock. Concentrations of Na+, HCO3-, As, and TDS also increase in the western MVA. Ground water in the MAK is of a Ca2+-HCO3- type. Mass-balance calculations, using Cl- as a natural, conservative tracer, indicate that approximately 17% of the ground water flowing from the confluence area is derived from the MVA.

  9. The role of Thurwieser rock avalanche in the geomorphological evolution of Zebrù Valley (Italian Central Alps)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riva, Federico; Frattini, Paolo; Greggio, Luca; Crosta, Giovanni B.

    2014-05-01

    On September 18th, 2004 a rock avalanche with an estimated volume of 2.5 M m3 propagated from the southern flank of Punta Thurwieser, affecting the Marè Valley, a tributary located in upper part of Zebrù Valley, 30 Km East from Bormio, in the Italian Central Alps. The landslide event deposited a thick debris cover on the pre-landslide morphology up to 2.2 Km from the source area. In this contribution, we aim at studying the role of the rock avalanche on the geomorphological evolution of the valley and in particular in controlling the evolution of the drainage system, the sediment budget and the mass balance of Zebrù glacier. In fact, after ten years it is possible to appreciate and valuate how such an event could modify the landscape and the geomorphology of an alpine valley. First, the landslide body formed a robust obstacle splitting the original watershed into two different sub-units. This caused a different distribution of the sediment yield rate in the upper part of the valley. As a consequence, an extremely rapid excavation of a new channel took place, ending in a new debris fan along the Zebrù valley bottom. A consistent groundwater flow still occurs within the rock avalanche deposit along the old valley axis, excepted for periods characterized by intense precipitation and snow melting events, which are able to activate the recently developed drainage channel. Thus implies that the main transport of sediments will occur along the new channel, during periods of high discharge. In the middle part of the landslide deposit, a sediment trap formed, collecting the material eroded by the surrounding ridges and by the upper sector of the deposit itself, forming a small plain under constant accretion. From this temporary trap, it was possible to estimate the periglacial sediment transport yield of the basin. The Zebrù glacier, flowing from the Mt Zebrù peak, was partially interested from the landslide, which covered a portion of the ice tongue with a shallow layer of blocks and finer matrix. The Thurwieser debris acted as a thermal insulation, preserving a significant ice volume and building up a steep bound, in the order of 10 m high, between non-covered and covered glacier surface. Topographic data collected since 2004 are presented and analyzed in this contribution to study the evolution both at a large and small scale.

  10. A three-dimensional numerical model of predevelopment conditions in the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    D'Agnese, F.A.; O'Brien, G.M.; Faunt, C.C.; Belcher, W.R.; San Juan, Carma

    2002-11-22

    In the early 1990's, two numerical models of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system were developed by the U.S. Department of Energy. In general, the two models were based on the same basic hydrogeologic data set. In 1998, the U.S. Department of Energy requested that the U.S. Geological Survey develop and maintain a ground-water flow model of the Death Valley region in support of U.S. Department of Energy programs at the Nevada Test Site. The purpose of developing this ''second-generation'' regional model was to enhance the knowledge and understanding of the ground-water flow system as new information and tools are developed. The U.S. Geological Survey also was encouraged by the U.S. Department of Energy to cooperate to the fullest extent with other Federal, State, and local entities in the region to take advantage of the benefits of their knowledge and expertise. The short-term objective of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system project was to develop a steady-stat e representation of the predevelopment conditions of the ground-water flow system utilizing the two geologic interpretations used to develop the previous numerical models. The long-term objective of this project was to construct and calibrate a transient model that simulates the ground-water conditions of the study area over the historical record that utilizes a newly interpreted hydrogeologic conceptual model. This report describes the result of the predevelopment steady-state model construction and calibration.

  11. Annual ground-water discharge by evapotranspiration from areas of spring-fed riparian vegetation along the eastern margin of Death Valley, 2000-02

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Laczniak, Randell J.; Smith, J. LaRue; DeMeo, Guy A.

    2006-01-01

    Flow from major springs and seeps along the eastern margin of Death Valley serves as the primary local water supply and sustains much of the unique habitat in Death Valley National Park. Together, these major spring complexes constitute the terminus of the Death Valley Regional Ground-Water Flow System--one of the larger flow systems in the Southwestern United States. The Grapevine Springs complex is the least exploited for water supply and consequently contains the largest area of undisturbed riparian habitat in the park. Because few estimates exist that quantify ground-water discharge from these spring complexes, a study was initiated to better estimate the amount of ground water being discharged annually from these sensitive, spring-fed riparian areas. Results of this study can be used to establish a basis for estimating water rights and as a baseline from which to assess any future changes in ground-water discharge in the park. Evapotranspiration (ET) is estimated volumetrically as the product of ET-unit (general vegetation type) acreage and a representative ET rate. ET-unit acreage is determined from high-resolution multi-spectral imagery; and a representative ET rate is computed from data collected in the Grapevine Springs area using the Bowen-ratio solution to the energy budget, or from rates given in other ET studies in the Death Valley area. The ground-water component of ET is computed by removing the local precipitation component from the ET rate. Two different procedures, a modified soil-adjusted vegetation index using the percent reflectance of the red and near-infrared wavelengths and land-cover classification using multi-spectral imagery were used to delineate the ET units within each major spring-discharge area. On the basis of the more accurate procedure that uses the vegetation index, ET-unit acreage for the Grapevine Springs discharge area totaled about 192 acres--of which 80 acres were moderate-density vegetation and 112 acres were high-density vegetation. ET-unit acreage for two other discharge areas delineated in the Grapevine Springs area (Surprise Springs and Staininger Spring) totaled about 6 and 43 acres, respectively; and for the discharge areas delineated in the Furnace Creek area (Nevares Springs, Cow Creek-Salt Springs, Texas Spring, and Travertine Springs) totaled about 29, 13, 11, and 21 acres, respectively. In discharge areas other than Grapevine Springs, watering and spring diversions have altered the natural distribution of the vegetation. More...

  12. Bridging dry spells for maize cropping through supplemental irrigation in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muluneh Bitew, Alemayehu; Keesstra, Saskia; Stroosnijder, Leo

    2015-04-01

    Maize yield in the Central Rift Valley of Ethiopia (CRV) suffers from dry spells at sensitive growth stages. Risk of crop failure makes farmers reluctant to invest in fertilizer. This makes the CRV food insecure. There are farms with well-maintained terraces and Rain Water Harvesting (RWH) systems using concrete farms ponds. We tested the hypothesis that in these farms supplemental irrigation with simultaneous crop intensification might boost production of a small maize area sufficient to improve food security. Intensification includes a higher plant density of a hybrid variety under optimum fertilization. First we assessed the probability of occurrence of dry spells. Then we estimated the availability of sufficient runoff in the ponds in dry years. During 2012 (dry) and 2013 (wet) on-farm field research was conducted with 10 combinations of supplemental irrigation and plant density. The simplest was rainfed farming with 30,000 plants ha-1. The most advanced was no water stress and 75,000 plants ha-1. Finally we compared our on-farm yield with that of neighbouring farmers. Because 2013 was a wet year no irrigation was needed. Our long term daily rainfall (1970-2011) analysis proves the occurrence of dry spells during the onset of the maize (Belg months March and April). In March there is hardly enough water in the ponds. So, we advise later sowing. Starting from April available water (runoff from a 2.2 ha catchment) matches crop water requirement (for 0.5 ha maize). Significant differences between grain and total biomass yield were observed between rainfed and other irrigation levels. However, since the largest difference is only 12%, the investment in irrigation non-critical drought years is not worth the effort. There was also a limited effect (18-22%) of increasing plant density. So, we advise not to use more than 45,000 plants ha-1. The grain yield and total biomass difference between farmers own practice and our on-farm research was 101% and 84% respectively in 2012. This large increase in grain yield is contributed to the higher use of (150% recommended) of fertilizer against the current use (50% or less) by adjacent farmers. Our hypothesis was that supplemental irrigation in combination with increased plant density would greatly increase grain yield. This hypothesis could not be proven with our 2 years experiment. Our experiment, once again, suggests that yield lower than attainable is not a matter of water shortage but rather an effect of lack of fertilizer.

  13. Petrological inferences on the evolution of magmas erupted in the Andagua Valley, Peru (Central Volcanic Zone)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sørensen, E. V.; Holm, P. M.

    2008-10-01

    Major and trace element and Sr and Nd isotope data is presented from the Andagua valley scoria cone and lava field (15°32' S 72°19' W), Southern Peru in the northernmost part of the Central Volcanic Zone (CVZ). The rocks are all quite evolved in composition (SiO 2 = 55-64 wt.%) and classify as benmoreites, latites and few mugearites and trachytes. Samples are characterized by high Na 2O (4.2-5.2 wt.%), Sr (600-1300 ppm), Ba (800-1600 ppm). The main difference between the benmoreites and latites is in the Na 2O content that reach the highest so far reported from CVZ for these SiO 2 concentrations. The rocks are generally nearly aphyric but latites and trachytes are more porphyritic. Amphibole microphenocrysts generally are only present in latites and trachytes. The difference between benmoreite and latite samples is reflected in lower P 2O 5 and Zr content of the latite samples documenting the existence of two compositional different parental magma types. The investigated volcanic activity spans the Pleistocene to Recent with the historic activity concentrated in the area just south of Andagua. Combined relative stratigraphy, petrography and geochemistry define volcanic units and demonstrate that rocks from Chilcayoc Grande, Chilcayoc Chico 2, Jenchana, Sucna 1 and Chilcayoc Chico 1 represent the most recent volcanic activity. The main trend samples, each form a co-magmatic group resulting in sub-parallel trends in many variations diagrams. It is furthermore shown that these trends point towards calculated mixing lines relating the individual units through a binary mixing process, thus indicating a two stage evolution. In the case of Jenchana, Sucna 1 and Chilcayoc Chico 1, the samples define positive correlation trends in the Sr vs. Rb diagram that can be extrapolated back towards origo indicating nearly perfect incompatibility of Sr and Rb. This together with generally high Sr/Y (50-105) and low Y content (< 16 ppm) suggest lack of plagioclase fractionation and residual garnet in the source and is taken as evidence for relatively high pressure (lower crustal) origin of the mixing event. The amphibole bearing samples form individual co-magmatic groups that cannot be related to each other. This means that the amphibole bearing samples originates from different magmas. The lavas of the Ninamama group are comparable in age to the main trend samples but different in petrography and composition, why the two compositional different magmas must have existed within a small confined area within a limited time span.

  14. Regional hydrogeochemical groundwater characterization and Natural Arsenic occurrence in Upper Valtellina Valley (Central Italian Alps, Italy)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pena Reyes, Fredy; Crosta, Giovanni B.; Frattini, Paolo; Basiricò, Stefano

    2015-04-01

    The aim of the research is the characterization of the alpine Upper Valtellina Valley (central Italian Alps, 800 km2) aquifers by means of hydrogeological, hydrogeochemical, As speciation, isotopic and whole-rock analyses. In particular, the main focus of the study was the understanding of the processes responsible for As release and mobilization into the groundwater. Historical chemical data from springs, wells, lakes, rivers and public fountains were collected from the Lombardy Region Health Agency (ASL) and implemented into a geodatabase. The available groundwater chemistry analyses (3050) from five municipalities (Bormio, Livigno, Valdidentro, Valdisotto and Valfurva) cover a relatively long time span between 1996 and 2011. Moreover, samples across the entire study area and covering one full hydrologic year 2012-2013 were collected during four different campaigns (June 2012, October 2012, May 2013, and September 2013) and analyzed . During these campaigns, water samples have been collected from both cold springs and thermal springs. The hydrogeochemistry of aquifers and superficial waters through the hydrologic year, and the long-term regional As distribution and time variability were analyzed. Although the studied springs belong to different catchments with different hydrochemical and lithological conditions, they present some typical characteristics: (1) the water types are dominated by dissolution of the main ions Ca - Mg and SO4-HCO3; (2) the Cl concentration is always very low, and poorly correlated with other ions; (3) the circulation time obtained from isotopic data ranges between 5 and 10 years for thermal springs and it is lower than 2 years for cold springs; (4) the average yearly temperatures (about 12°C for cold springs, and between 18°C and 42° for thermal springs) are nearly constant through the year; (5) dominant oxidizing environments have been observed for most of the cold springs and also for the thermal springs; (6) anthropogenic contamination is absent, while natural contamination of Arsenic affects most of the springs, with a natural background level for the entire UVV of 33 µg/L; (7) both As (V) and As (III) are present in all the springs analyzed, with a marked prevalence of As (V) among the cold springs. These conditions suggest that the cold springs in the UVV belong to recent aquifers, hydrochemically immature, where the presence of Arsenic is mostly related to alkali desorption and sulphide oxidation, while the thermal springs derive from the rapid uprise of deep-circulation water, with a high concentration of geothermal arsenic.

  15. Ecohydrology of Wetlands Occurring on Perched Seasonally Saturated Water Tables in the Central Valley of California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCarten, N. F.; Harter, T.

    2010-12-01

    The Central Valley, California has extensive areas of shallow perched groundwater systems associated with geomorphic terraces. Early season water supply is derived from precipitation (PPT) that has infiltrated into soils underlain by a near surface aquitard, typically at less than 2 m depth. Early season water input is regulated by the hydraulic conductivity of the (clay-) loamy soils and by surface and aquitard slope of the local catchments associated with these old alluvial landforms. Research on these landforms and shallow aquifers has identified a complex PPT and evapotranspiration (ET) sensitive system that includes shallow depressions that seasonally produce water table derived wetlands (“vernal pools”). These wetlands have been recognized for a very high level of plant and invertebrate species diversity including endangered species. Our work on these seasonal perched systems shows that as much as 80 percent of the soil column above the aquitard is saturated, during average to high rainfall years, for up to 90 to 120 days. Soil surface topographic depressions reduce the soil depth to the aquitard. Where the water table of this perched system intercepts the land surface, vernal pools develop. The perched groundwater drains into seasonal surface drainages that ultimately supply the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers. At the end of the rainy season, both the vernal pools and the perched aquifer rapidly and synchronously disappear. Once the soil is unsaturated, water flow is vertically upward due to ET. Aquatic and wetland adapted plant species develop within the basins along a depth gradient. Variably saturated modeling of this system was conducted using HYDRUS 2D/3D. Climate inputs were from local and regional weather stations that measure and calculate daily PPT and ET, respectively. Initial conditions and calibration of the domain were based on field measurements using pressure transducers and soil moisture sensors. Soil pressure flux was measured using a matric potential soil sensor. Field measurements were taken throughout the local catchment and discharge points. The HYDRUS modeling has revealed a high level of sensitivity of the perched system to PPT and ET, with the first major seasonal PPT event generally establishing initial moisture saturation immediately above the aquitard. Plant species adapted to vernal pools were found to occur within narrow (5 to 10 cm) elevation zones in the pool basins and are correlated with specific hydroperiods of surface inundation. Annual variation in the amount and distribution of rainfall can cause a change the plant community composition. Longer term climate changes could result in regional shifts in plant community structure.

  16. Central nervous system haemorrhage causing early death in acute promyelocytic leukaemia.

    PubMed

    Borowska, Anna; Stelmaszczyk-Emmel, Anna; Pawelec, Katarzyna

    2016-01-01

    Acute promyelocytic leukaemia (APL) is a rare type of paediatric leukaemia characterised by a specific genetic mutation and life-threatening coagulopathy. The discovery of all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA), which acts directly on promyelocytic locus-retinoic acid receptor α (PML-RARα) gene product, brought a revolution to the therapy of this disorder. Unfortunately, despite an improvement in the complete remission rate, the early death (ED) rate has not changed significantly, and the haemorrhages remain a major problem. The most common bleeding site, which accounts for about 65-80% of haemorrhages, is the central nervous system. Second in line are pulmonary haemorrhages (32%), while gastrointestinal bleedings are relatively rare. Haemorrhages result from thrombocytopaenia, disseminated intravascular coagulopathy (DIC), and systemic fibrinolysis. Herein we present a boy aged one year and nine months with APL. The patient was not eligible for ATRA administration due to poor clinical condition. He developed bleeding diathesis that presented as disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) and led to intracranial haemorrhage, which resulted in the patient's death. PMID:26862315

  17. Central nervous system haemorrhage causing early death in acute promyelocytic leukaemia

    PubMed Central

    Borowska, Anna; Stelmaszczyk-Emmel, Anna

    2016-01-01

    Acute promyelocytic leukaemia (APL) is a rare type of paediatric leukaemia characterised by a specific genetic mutation and life-threatening coagulopathy. The discovery of all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA), which acts directly on promyelocytic locus-retinoic acid receptor α (PML-RARα) gene product, brought a revolution to the therapy of this disorder. Unfortunately, despite an improvement in the complete remission rate, the early death (ED) rate has not changed significantly, and the haemorrhages remain a major problem. The most common bleeding site, which accounts for about 65-80% of haemorrhages, is the central nervous system. Second in line are pulmonary haemorrhages (32%), while gastrointestinal bleedings are relatively rare. Haemorrhages result from thrombocytopaenia, disseminated intravascular coagulopathy (DIC), and systemic fibrinolysis. Herein we present a boy aged one year and nine months with APL. The patient was not eligible for ATRA administration due to poor clinical condition. He developed bleeding diathesis that presented as disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) and led to intracranial haemorrhage, which resulted in the patient's death. PMID:26862315

  18. Cell Death, Neuronal Plasticity and Functional Loading in the Development of the Central Nervous System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keefe, J. R.

    1985-01-01

    Research on the precise timing and regulation of neuron production and maturation in the vestibular and visual systems of Wistar rats and several inbred strains of mice (C57B16 and Pallid mutant) concentrated upon establishing a timing baseline for mitotic development of the neurons of the vestibular nuclei and the peripheral vestibular sensory structures (maculae, cristae). This involved studies of the timing and site of neuronal cell birth and preliminary studies of neuronal cell death in both central and peripheral elements of the mammalian vestibular system. Studies on neuronal generation and maturation in the retina were recently added to provide a mechanism for more properly defining the in utero' developmental age of the individual fetal subject and to closely monitor potential transplacental effects of environmentally stressed maternal systems. Information is given on current efforts concentrating upon the (1) perinatal period of development (E18 thru P14) and (2) the role of cell death in response to variation in the functional loading of the vestibular and proprioreceptive systems in developing mammalian organisms.

  19. Geologic map and upper Paleozoic stratigraphy of the Marble Canyon area, Cottonwood Canyon quadrangle, Death Valley National Park, Inyo County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stone, Paul; Stevens, Calvin H.; Belasky, Paul; Montañez, Isabel P.; Martin, Lauren G.; Wardlaw, Bruce R.; Sandberg, Charles A.; Wan, Elmira; Olson, Holly A.; Priest, Susan S.

    2014-01-01

    This geologic map and pamphlet focus on the stratigraphy, depositional history, and paleogeographic significance of upper Paleozoic rocks exposed in the Marble Canyon area in Death Valley National Park, California. Bedrock exposed in this area is composed of Mississippian to lower Permian (Cisuralian) marine sedimentary rocks and the Jurassic Hunter Mountain Quartz Monzonite. These units are overlain by Tertiary and Quaternary nonmarine sedimentary deposits that include a previously unrecognized tuff to which we tentatively assign an age of late middle Miocene (~12 Ma) based on tephrochronologic analysis, in addition to the previously recognized Pliocene tuff of Mesquite Spring. Mississippian and Pennsylvanian rocks in the Marble Canyon area represent deposition on the western continental shelf of North America. Mississippian limestone units in the area (Tin Mountain, Stone Canyon, and Santa Rosa Hills Limestones) accumulated on the outer part of a broad carbonate platform that extended southwest across Nevada into east-central California. Carbonate sedimentation was interrupted by a major eustatic sea-level fall that has been interpreted to record the onset of late Paleozoic glaciation in southern Gondwana. Following a brief period of Late Mississippian clastic sedimentation (Indian Springs Formation), a rise in eustatic sea level led to establishment of a new carbonate platform that covered most of the area previously occupied by the Mississippian platform. The Pennsylvanian Bird Spring Formation at Marble Canyon makes up the outer platform component of ten third-order (1 to 5 m.y. duration) stratigraphic sequences recently defined for the regional platform succession. The regional paleogeography was fundamentally changed by major tectonic activity along the continental margin beginning in middle early Permian time. As a result, the Pennsylvanian carbonate shelf at Marble Canyon subsided and was disconformably overlain by lower Permian units (Osborne Canyon and Darwin Canyon Formations) representing part of a deep-water turbidite basin filled primarily by fine-grained siliciclastic sediment derived from cratonal sources to the east. Deformation and sedimentation along the western part of this basin continued into late Permian time. The culminating phase was part of a regionally extensive late Permian thrust system that included the Marble Canyon thrust fault just west of the present map area.

  20. I. Detailed records of geomagnetic field behavior from Death Valley and Hawaii. II. An age constraint on Gulf of California rifting from Santa Rosalia, Baja California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, John William

    Paleomagnetic studies were performed on sedimentary rocks exposed in the Confidence Hills of southern Death Valley. These rocks contain two records of the upper Olduvai geomagnetic polarity reversal (1.79 Ma) which agree despite differences of lithology, depositional environment, and structural tilting. The records show evidence for an aborted reversal during the transition from normal to reversed polarity. Transitional virtual geomagnetic poles (VGP's) lie in longitudinal bands approx. 90sp° from the sampling site longitude, vastly different from VGP's produced elsewhere for this reversal but consistent with site-dependent trends of VGP paths observed in global data compilations. Studies of the anisotropy of anhysteritic remanence conclude that inclination shallowing in sediments during low geomagnetic field intensities is a possible cause for the site dependence of VGP paths. Another detailed paleomagnetic record from the Confidence Hills shows that the Reunion normal-polarity subchron was a single event of approx. 20 kyr duration (2.15-2.13 Ma). The presence of a lithofacies containing disruptive evaporite crystals creates two small gaps in the record just prior to the normal-polarity Reunion interval. A paleomagnetic study was performed on the 1-km Hawaii Scientific Drilling Project core. This core sampled over 200 lava flows erupted from Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea volcanos in the past 400 kyr. The results of this study show that secular variation at Hawaii is consistent with that elsewhere on Earth for the past 400 kyr. In addition, the data show evidence for a persistent axial quadrupole in the time-averaged field and the first records of the Blake and Pringle Falls or Jamaica geomagnetic field excurions in the central Pacific. Paleomagnetic and geochronologic studies performed on marine sedimentary rocks from Santa Rosalia, Baja California Sur, Mexico resulted in an estimated age of 7.1 ± 0.05 Ma for the base of the Boleo Formation, the earliest marine rocks there. This provides a new age constraint on Gulf of California rifting and may help refine models of North America-Pacific plate interactions during 12-3.5 Ma.

  1. Effectiveness and Tradeoffs between Portfolios of Adaptation Strategies Addressing Future Climate and Socioeconomic Uncertainties in California's Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tansey, M. K.; Van Lienden, B.; Das, T.; Munevar, A.; Young, C. A.; Flores-Lopez, F.; Huntington, J. L.

    2013-12-01

    The Central Valley of California is one of the major agricultural areas in the United States. The Central Valley Project (CVP) is operated by the Bureau of Reclamation to serve multiple purposes including generating approximately 4.3 million gigawatt hours of hydropower and providing, on average, 5 million acre-feet of water per year to irrigate approximately 3 million acres of land in the Sacramento, San Joaquin, and Tulare Lake basins, 600,000 acre-feet per year of water for urban users, and 800,000 acre-feet of annual supplies for environmental purposes. The development of effective adaptation and mitigation strategies requires assessing multiple risks including potential climate changes as well as uncertainties in future socioeconomic conditions. In this study, a scenario-based analytical approach was employed by combining three potential 21st century socioeconomic futures with six representative climate and sea level change projections developed using a transient hybrid delta ensemble method from an archive of 112 bias corrected spatially downscaled CMIP3 global climate model simulations to form 18 future socioeconomic-climate scenarios. To better simulate the effects of climate changes on agricultural water demands, analyses of historical agricultural meteorological station records were employed to develop estimates of future changes in solar radiation and atmospheric humidity from the GCM simulated temperature and precipitation. Projected changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide were computed directly by weighting SRES emissions scenarios included in each representative climate projection. These results were used as inputs to a calibrated crop water use, growth and yield model to simulate the effects of climate changes on the evapotranspiration and yields of major crops grown in the Central Valley. Existing hydrologic, reservoir operations, water quality, hydropower, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and both urban and agricultural economic models were integrated into a suite of decision support tools to assess the impacts of future socioeconomic-climate uncertainties on key performance metrics for the CVP, State Water Project and other Central Valley water management systems under current regulatory requirements. Four thematic portfolios consisting of regional and local adaptation strategies including changes in reservoir operations, increased water conservation, storage and conveyance were developed and simulated to evaluate their potential effectiveness in meeting delivery reliability, water quality, environmental, hydropower, GHG, urban and agricultural economic performance criteria. The results indicate that the portfolios exhibit a considerable range of effectiveness depending on the socioeconomic-climate scenario. For most criteria, the portfolios were more sensitive to climate projections than socioeconomic assumptions. However, the results demonstrate that important tradeoffs occur between portfolios depending on the performance criteria considered.

  2. Paleomagnetic and structural evidence for middle Tertiary counterclockwise block rotation in the Dixie Valley region, west-central Nevada

    SciTech Connect

    Hudson, M.R.; Geissman, J.W.

    1987-07-01

    Paleomagnetic data from late Oligocene to early Miocene ash-flow tuffs at four localities in the northern Dixie Valley region, west-central Nevada, indicate that parts of the crust have rotated counterclockwise by at least 25/sup 0/ and perhaps significantly more in late Cenozoic time. Field relations in White Rock Canyon, Stillwater Range, suggest that rotation (1) was accommodated by right-lateral slip on northwest-trending faults, (2) spanned ash-flow tuff emplacement, and (3) probably ceased before eruption of overlying middle Miocene basalts. Accurate estimates of Cenozoic extension, as well as evaluation of earlier Mesozoic structures, must include the strain partitioned into rotation in the area.

  3. Analysis of the quality of image data acquired by the LANDSAT-4 thematic mapper and multispectral scanners. [Central Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Colwell, R. N. (Principal Investigator)

    1983-01-01

    Image products and numeric data were extracted from both TM and MSS data in an effort to evaluate the quality of these data for interpreting major agricultural resources and conditions in California's Central Valley. The utility of TM data appears excellent for meeting most of the inventory objectives of the agricultural resource specialist. These data should be extremely valuable for crop type and area proportion estimation, for updating agricultural land use survey maps at 1:24,000-scale and smaller, for field boundary definition, and for determining the size and location of individual farmsteads.

  4. Spatial use by wintering greater white-fronted geese relative to a decade of habitat change in California's Central Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ackerman, J.T.; Takekawa, J.Y.; Orthmeyer, D.L.; Fleskes, J.P.; Yee, J.L.; Kruse, K.L.

    2006-01-01

    We investigated the effect of recent habitat changes in California's Central Valley on wintering Pacific greater white-fronted geese (Anser albifrons frontalis) by comparing roost-to-feed distances, distributions, population range sizes, and habitat use during 1987-1990 and 1998-2000. These habitat changes included wetland restoration and agricultural land enhancement due to the 1990 implementation of the Central Valley Joint Venture, increased land area used for rice (Oryza sativa) production, and the practice of flooding, rather than burning, rice straw residues for decomposition because of burning restrictions enacted in 1991. Using radiotelemetry, we tracked 192 female geese and recorded 4,516 locations. Geese traveled shorter distances between roosting and feeding sites during 1998-2000 (24.2 ?? 2.2 km) than during 1987-1990 (32.5 ?? 3.4 km); distance traveled tended to decline throughout winter during both decades and varied among watershed basins. Population range size was smaller during 1998-2000 (3,367 km2) than during 1987-1990 (5,145 km2), despite a 2.2-fold increase in the size of the Pacific Flyway population of white-fronted geese during the same time period. The population range size also tended to increase throughout winter during both decades. Feeding and roosting distributions of geese also differed between decades; geese shifted into basins that had the greatest increases in the amount of area in rice production (i.e., American Basin) and out of other basins (i.e., Delta Basin). The use of rice habitat for roosting (1987-1990: 40%, 1998-2000: 54%) and feeding (1987-1990: 57%, 1998-2000: 72%) increased between decades, whereas use of wetlands declined for roosting (1987-1990: 36%, 1998-2000: 31%) and feeding (1987-1990: 22%, 1998-2000: 12%). Within postharvested rice habitats, geese roosted and fed primarily in burned rice fields during 1987-1990 (roost: 43%, feed: 34%), whereas they used flooded rice fields during 1998-2000 (roost: 78%, feed: 64%). Our results suggest that white-fronted geese have altered their spatial use of California's Central Valley during the past decade in response to changing agricultural practices and the implementation of the Central Valley Joint Venture.

  5. Significance of orthogonal flow in the Funeral Mountains metamorphic core complex, Death Valley, California: Insights from geochronology and microstructural analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sauer, K. M.; Wells, M. L.; Hoisch, T. D.

    2013-12-01

    The Funeral Mountains metamorphic core complex (FMMCC) in Death Valley, California, exposes middle to lower crustal rocks of the Sevier-Laramide orogen in the footwall of the Boundary Canyon detachment (BCD). Monarch Canyon, located in the northwest section of the Funeral Mountains, exposes the structurally deepest rocks in the FMMCC. These Mesoproterozoic to Neoproterozoic metasedimentary rocks record upper amphibolite facies metamorphism with migmatites developed at the deepest levels. The Monarch Spring fault (MSF) juxtaposes migmatitic paragneisses below against pelitic schists, calcsilicate schists, and marbles above, and represents a deformed anatectic front. In the footwall of the BCD above the MSF, distributed ductile deformation and stratigraphically localized high-strain zones, termed intracore shear zones, are responsible for attenuation and local stratigraphic omission during top-northwest non-coaxial deformation. The relative contributions of Late Cretaceous-early Tertiary and Miocene extensional strains which manifest in the top-northwest fabrics remains unclear, and is being addressed by ongoing and combined thermochronologic, microstructural, and EBSD studies. Our working hypothesis is a polystage extensional history in the FMMCC, with Late Cretaceous extensional intracore shear zones locally reactivated during the Miocene. Below the MSF, migmatitic paragneisses lack similar greenschist to lower amphibolite facies top-northwest fabrics. These rocks instead exhibit heterogeneous strain and a weak to moderately developed northeast-trending mineral lineation, and a local, strong fabric asymmetry indicative of a top-southwest sense of shear. We propose that the anatectic front is an apparent zone of structural decoupling between top-southwest shear below and top-northwest shear above the MSF. Structural and geochronologic studies are currently underway to establish whether the orthogonally directed flow above and below the anatectic front were coeval or developed in sequence with a progressive change in kinematics. Preliminary zircon U-Pb geochronology on leucogranite dikes and sills provide constraints on the timing of top-southwest shearing in paragneisses below the MSF. In lower Monarch Canyon, a strongly deformed pegmatitic muscovite granite sill that is folded with the surrounding rock provides an age of 68.1 × 0.3 Ma. A weakly deformed leucogranite dike in upper Monarch Canyon yields an age of 61.1 × 0.8 Ma, and an undeformed leucogranite dike that cross cuts the top-southwest fabric as well as the folded sills in lower Monarch Canyon yields an age of 57.2 × 0.9 Ma. These ages suggest that this phase of deformation below the MSF began after ~68 Ma, was in its waning stages at ~61 Ma, and had ceased by ~57 Ma. Currently, there are few constraints on the timing of top-northwest shearing above the MSF. If the top-northwest and top-southwest fabrics are determined to be coeval, we will test if the contact represents a distributed zone of decoupling or an attachment zone.

  6. Lava flows vs. surface water: the geologic battle for the upper McKenzie valley, central Oregon Cascades

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deligne, N. I.; Conrey, R. M.; Cashman, K. V.; Grant, G. E.; Amidon, W. H.

    2010-12-01

    Over the past several thousand years, a battle for the upper McKenzie valley in the central Oregon Cascades has raged between, on one side, lava flows from the Sand Mountain volcanic chain and Belknap volcano, and on the other side, surface water fed by prolific springs. The north-south oriented upper McKenzie valley marks the boundary between the (old) western Cascades and the (active) high Cascades. The McKenzie valley hosted a glacier in the Pleistocene. In the Holocene, the valley has become a natural destination and conduit for both lava flows and surface water: it is downhill from volcanic vents, and as it follows the boundary between low (west) and high (east) porosity terrains, groundwater sourced from the high Cascades is forced to emerge in the valley. New surface age exposure dates, in conjunction with 14C dating, indicate that about 3000 years ago multiple lava flows from the Sand Mountain volcanic chain entered the valley from the east. The entire eruptive episode lasted several hundred years and caused massive disturbances to the ancestral McKenzie river. In the early stages of the eruptive episode, a lava flow dammed the McKenzie river, forming Clear Lake (modern source of the McKenzie river) and drowning a Douglas Fir forest. Relic drowned trees suggest that Clear Lake formed in two stages, as trees tops in the deepest part of the lake are consistently rotted off at a depth of 20 meters below water level, while trees in the shallower parts of the lake are rotted off at the surface. This suggests a paleo-lake level 20 meters below modern levels; lake levels are suspected to have reached modern levels later in the course of the eruptive episode when subsequent Sand Mountain lava flows entered the lake. In the years since the Sand Mountain eruptive episode, the McKenzie river re-established itself by adopting a lava channel. Considerable water also flows through the lava flows, emerging as springs along the river channel. The river also hosts two spectacular waterfalls at two lava flow fronts; these waterfalls appear to have retreated at least 50 meters since the lava flows were emplaced. In two unrelated volcanic episodes, lava flows from Belknap volcano entered the valley south of the Sand Mountain flows. A Belknap lava flow which predates the Sand Mountain lavas buried the river; today, the McKenzie river still disappears into the lava and reemerges at a spring several kilometers south. Younger Belknap lava flows did not reach the valley floor but resurface a considerable portion of the watershed. Thus, the upper McKenzie valley showcases strategic maneuvers by two great geologic fluids in the battle for domination: lava flows conquer by overwhelming the system, and water reaches a truce by adopting the enemy’s turf and flowing over and through it.

  7. Facies analysis of Tertiary basin-filling rocks of the Death Valley regional ground-water system and surrounding areas, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sweetkind, Donald S.; Fridrich, Christopher J.; Taylor, Emily

    2001-01-01

    Existing hydrologic models of the Death Valley region typically have defined the Cenozoic basins as those areas that are covered by recent surficial deposits, and have treated the basin-fill deposits that are concealed under alluvium as a single unit with uniform hydrologic properties throughout the region, and with depth. Although this latter generalization was known to be flawed, it evidently was made because available geologic syntheses did not provide the basis for a more detailed characterization. As an initial attempt to address this problem, this report presents a compilation and synthesis of existing and new surface and subsurface data on the lithologic variations between and within the Cenozoic basin fills of this region. The most permeable lithologies in the Cenozoic basin fills are freshwater limestones, unaltered densely welded tuffs, and little-consolidated coarse alluvium. The least permeable lithologies are playa claystones, altered nonwelded tuffs, and tuffaceous and clay-matrix sediments of several types. In all but the youngest of the basin fills, permeability probably decreases strongly with depth owing to a typically increasing abundance of volcanic ash or clay in the matrices of the clastic sediments with increasing age (and therefore with increasing depth in general), and to increasing consolidation and alteration (both hydrothermal and diagenetic) with increasing depth and age. This report concludes with a categorization of the Cenozoic basins of the Death Valley region according to the predominant lithologies in the different basin fills and presents qualitative constraints on the hydrologic properties of these major lithologic categories.

  8. Facies Analysis of Tertiary Basin-Filling Rocks of the Death Valley Regional Ground-Water System and Surrounding Areas, Nevada and California

    SciTech Connect

    Sweetkind, D.S.; Fridrich, C.J.; Taylor, Emily

    2002-04-04

    Existing hydrologic models of the Death Valley region typically have defined the Cenozoic basins as those areas that are covered by recent surficial deposits, and have treated the basin-fill deposits that are concealed under alluvium as a single unit with uniform hydrologic properties throughout the region, and with depth. Although this latter generalization was known to be flawed, it evidently was made because available geologic syntheses did not provide the basis for a more detailed characterization. As an initial attempt to address this problem, this report presents a compilation and synthesis of existing and new surface and subsurface data on the lithologic variations between and within the Cenozoic basin fills of this region. The most permeable lithologies in the Cenozoic basin fills are freshwater limestones, unaltered densely welded tuffs, and little-consolidated coarse alluvium. The least permeable lithologies are playa claystones, altered nonwelded tuffs, and tuffaceous and cl ay-matrix sediments of several types. In all but the youngest of the basin fills, permeability probably decreases strongly with depth owing to a typically increasing abundance of volcanic ash or clay in the matrices of the clastic sediments with increasing age (and therefore with increasing depth in general), and to increasing consolidation and alteration (both hydrothermal and diagenetic) with increasing depth and age. This report concludes with a categorization of the Cenozoic basins of the Death Valley region according to the predominant lithologies in the different basin fills and presents qualitative constraints on the hydrologic properties of these major lithologic categories.

  9. Update to the Ground-Water Withdrawals Database for the Death Valley REgional Ground-Water Flow System, Nevada and California, 1913-2003

    SciTech Connect

    Michael T. Moreo; and Leigh Justet

    2008-07-02

    Ground-water withdrawal estimates from 1913 through 2003 for the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system are compiled in an electronic database to support a regional, three-dimensional, transient ground-water flow model. This database updates a previously published database that compiled estimates of ground-water withdrawals for 1913–1998. The same methodology is used to construct each database. Primary differences between the 2 databases are an additional 5 years of ground-water withdrawal data, well locations in the updated database are restricted to Death Valley regional ground-water flow system model boundary, and application rates are from 0 to 1.5 feet per year lower than original estimates. The lower application rates result from revised estimates of crop consumptive use, which are based on updated estimates of potential evapotranspiration. In 2003, about 55,700 acre-feet of ground water was pumped in the DVRFS, of which 69 percent was used for irrigation, 13 percent for domestic, and 18 percent for public supply, commercial, and mining activities.

  10. Runoff simulation in the Ferghana Valley (Central Asia) using conceptual hydrological HBV-light model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radchenko, Iuliia; Breuer, Lutz; Forkutsa, Irina; Frede, Hans-Georg

    2013-04-01

    Glaciers and permafrost on the ranges of the Tien Shan mountain system are primary sources of water in the Ferghana Valley. The water artery of the valley is the Syr Darya River that is formed by confluence of the Naryn and Kara Darya rivers, which originate from the mountain glaciers of the Ak-Shyrak and the Ferghana ranges accordingly. The Ferghana Valley is densely populated and main activity of population is agriculture that heavily depends on irrigation especially in such arid region. The runoff reduction is projected in future due to global temperature rise and glacier shrinkage as a consequence. Therefore, it is essential to study climate change impact on water resources in the area both for ecological and economic aspects. The evaluation of comparative contribution of small upper catchments (n=24) with precipitation predominance in discharge and the large Naryn and Karadarya River basins, which are fed by glacial melt water, to the Fergana Valley water balance under current and future climatic conditions is general aim of the study. Appropriate understanding of the hydrological cycle under current climatic conditions is significant for prognosis of water resource availability in the future. Thus, conceptual hydrological HBV-light model was used for analysing of the water balance of the small upper catchments that surround the Ferghana Valley. Three trial catchments (the Kugart River basin, 1010 km²; the Kurshab River basin, 2010 km2; the Akbura River basin, 2260 km²) with relatively good temporal quality data were chosen to setup the model. Due to limitation of daily temperature data the MODAWEC weather generator, which converts monthly temperature data into daily based on correlation with rainfall, was tested and applied for the HBV-light model.

  11. Cyclicity in the Irish Valley Member of the Catskill Formation, central Pennsylvania

    SciTech Connect

    Terry, J.M. . Dept. of Geology)

    1993-03-01

    The Upper Devonian Irish Valley Member of the Catskill Formation was deposited on a muddy coastline along the Catskill Delta margin. The Irish Valley contains cycles of varying duration caused by lateral shifting of facies during fluctuations of relative seal level. Approximately 400m of the Irish Valley Member at a newly exposed highway cut south of Selinsgrove, Pa. were described in terms of depth-diagnostic lithofacies: (A) Red siltstone and mudstone containing pedogenic features and root traces--Exposed coastal margin; (B) Heterolithic sand-dominated facies containing hummocky cross-stratification--Upper shoreface; (C) Wave-generated sand-dominated facies containing predominant flaser bedding--Middle Shoreface; (D) Wave-generated mud-dominated facies containing lenticular to wavy bedding--Lower shoreface; (E) Heterolithic mud-dominated facies containing parallel, thin laminations and thin (< 1 m) sandstone storm beds, which often have HCS--Offshore, between fair weather and storm wave bases--likely an offshore extension of Facies B. Approximately 30 shallowing-upward sequences occur throughout the section, and these sequences may be analyzed for patterns of cyclicity. It appears that smaller-scale (possibly fifth-order) cycles are superimposed on a higher order pattern (possibly fourth-order cycles). The Irish Valley Member was deposited over the course of 2.0--2.5 million years, thus each cycle likely represents 50,000--100,000 years. This figure fits nicely with the idea that the cycles of the Irish Valley Member were formed by eustatic sea-level fluctuations caused by Milankovitch-type orbital variations.

  12. A three-dimensional numerical model of predevelopment conditions in the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system, Nevada and California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    D'Agnese, Frank A.; O'Brien, G. M.; Faunt, C.C.; Belcher, W.R.; San Juan, C.

    2002-01-01

    In the early 1990's, two numerical models of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system were developed by the U.S. Department of Energy. In general, the two models were based on the same basic hydrogeologic data set. In 1998, the U.S. Department of Energy requested that the U.S. Geological Survey develop and maintain a ground-water flow model of the Death Valley region in support of U.S. Department of Energy programs at the Nevada Test Site. The purpose of developing this 'second-generation' regional model was to enhance the knowledge an understanding of the ground-water flow system as new information and tools are developed. The U.S. Geological Survey also was encouraged by the U.S. Department of Energy to cooperate to the fullest extent with other Federal, State, and local entities in the region to take advantage of the benefits of their knowledge and expertise. The short-term objective of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system project was to develop a steady-state representation of the predevelopment conditions of the ground-water flow system utilizing the two geologic interpretations used to develop the previous numerical models. The long-term objective of this project was to construct and calibrate a transient model that simulates the ground-water conditions of the study area over the historical record that utilizes a newly interpreted hydrogeologic conceptual model. This report describes the result of the predevelopment steady-state model construction and calibration. The Death Valley regional ground-water flow system is situated within the southern Great Basin, a subprovince of the Basin and Range physiographic province, bounded by latitudes 35 degrees north and 38 degrees 15 minutes north and by longitudes 115 and 118 degrees west. Hydrology in the region is a result of both the arid climatic conditions and the complex geology. Ground-water flow generally can be described as dominated by interbasinal flow and may be conceptualized as having two main components: a series of relatively shallow and localized flow paths that are superimposed on deeper regional flow paths. A significant component of the regional ground-water flow is through a thick Paleozoic carbonate rock sequence. Throughout the flow system, ground water flows through zones of high transmissivity that have resulted from regional faulting and fracturing. The conceptual model of the Death Valley regional ground-water flow system used for this study is adapted from the two previous ground-water modeling studies. The three-dimensional digital hydrogeologic framework model developed for the region also contains elements of both of the hydrogeologic framework models used in the previous investigations. As dictated by project scope, very little reinterpretation and refinement were made where these two framework models disagree; therefore, limitations in the hydrogeologic representation of the flow system exist. Despite limitations, the framework model provides the best representation to date of the hydrogeologic units and structures that control regional ground-water flow and serves as an important information source used to construct and calibrate the predevelopment, steady-state flow model. In addition to the hydrogeologic framework, a complex array of mechanisms accounts for flow into, through, and out of the regional ground-water flow system. Natural discharges from the regional ground-water flow system occur by evapotranspiration, springs, and subsurface outflow. In this study, evapotranspiration rates were adapted from a related investigation that developed maps of evapotranspiration areas and computed rates from micrometeorological data collected within the local area over a multiyear period. In some cases, historical spring flow records were used to derive ground-water discharge rates for isolated regional springs. For this investigation, a process-based, numerical model was developed to estimat

  13. Tomographic Rayleigh wave group velocities in the Central Valley, California, centered on the Sacramento/San Joaquin Delta

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fletcher, Jon B.; Erdem, Jemile; Seats, Kevin; Lawrence, Jesse

    2016-04-01

    If shaking from a local or regional earthquake in the San Francisco Bay region were to rupture levees in the Sacramento/San Joaquin Delta, then brackish water from San Francisco Bay would contaminate the water in the Delta: the source of freshwater for about half of California. As a prelude to a full shear-wave velocity model that can be used in computer simulations and further seismic hazard analysis, we report on the use of ambient noise tomography to build a fundamental mode, Rayleigh wave group velocity model for the region around the Sacramento/San Joaquin Delta in the western Central Valley, California. Recordings from the vertical component of about 31 stations were processed to compute the spatial distribution of Rayleigh wave group velocities. Complex coherency between pairs of stations was stacked over 8 months to more than a year. Dispersion curves were determined from 4 to about 18 s. We calculated average group velocities for each period and inverted for deviations from the average for a matrix of cells that covered the study area. Smoothing using the first difference is applied. Cells of the model were about 5.6 km in either dimension. Checkerboard tests of resolution, which are dependent on station density, suggest that the resolving ability of the array is reasonably good within the middle of the array with resolution between 0.2 and 0.4°. Overall, low velocities in the middle of each image reflect the deeper sedimentary syncline in the Central Valley. In detail, the model shows several centers of low velocity that may be associated with gross geologic features such as faulting along the western margin of the Central Valley, oil and gas reservoirs, and large crosscutting features like the Stockton arch. At shorter periods around 5.5 s, the model's western boundary between low and high velocities closely follows regional fault geometry and the edge of a residual isostatic gravity low. In the eastern part of the valley, the boundaries of the low-velocity zone and gravity anomaly are better aligned at longer periods (around 10.5 s) suggesting that the eastern edge of the gravity low is associated with deeper structure. There is a strong correspondence between a low in gravity near the Kirby Hills fault and low velocities from the ambient noise tomography. At longer periods, higher velocities creep in from the east and narrow the overall dimension defined by the lower velocities. Overall, there is a strong correspondence between the shape and location of low velocities in the Rayleigh wave velocity images, and geological and geophysical features.

  14. Assessment of regional change in nitrate concentrations in groundwater in the Central Valley, California, USA, 1950s-2000s

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Burow, Karen R.; Jurgens, Bryant C.; Belitz, Kenneth; Dubrovsky, Neil M.

    2013-01-01

    A regional assessment of multi-decadal changes in nitrate concentrations was done using historical data and a spatially stratified non-biased approach. Data were stratified into physiographic subregions on the basis of geomorphology and soils data to represent zones of historical recharge and discharge patterns in the basin. Data were also stratified by depth to represent a shallow zone generally representing domestic drinking-water supplies and a deep zone generally representing public drinking-water supplies. These stratifications were designed to characterize the regional extent of groundwater with common redox and age characteristics, two factors expected to influence changes in nitrate concentrations over time. Overall, increasing trends in nitrate concentrations and the proportion of nitrate concentrations above 5 mg/L were observed in the east fans subregion of the Central Valley. Whereas the west fans subregion has elevated nitrate concentrations, temporal trends were not detected, likely due to the heterogeneous nature of the water quality in this area and geologic sources of nitrate, combined with sparse and uneven data coverage. Generally low nitrate concentrations in the basin subregion are consistent with reduced geochemical conditions resulting from low permeability soils and higher organic content, reflecting the distal portions of alluvial fans and historical groundwater discharge areas. Very small increases in the shallow aquifer in the basin subregion may reflect downgradient movement of high nitrate groundwater from adjacent areas or overlying intensive agricultural inputs. Because of the general lack of regionally extensive long-term monitoring networks, the results from this study highlight the importance of placing studies of trends in water quality into regional context. Earlier work concluded that nitrate concentrations were steadily increasing over time in the eastern San Joaquin Valley, but clearly those trends do not apply to other physiographic subregions within the Central Valley, even where land use and climate are similar.

  15. Paleomagnetic evidence for the age and extent of middle Tertiary counterclockwise rotation, Dixie Valley region, west central Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hudson, M.R.; Geissman, J.W.

    1991-01-01

    Paleomagnetic data obtained from Oligocene to lower Miocene igneous rocks and middle Miocene basaltic rocks of fifteen localities from a region surrounding Dixie Valley in west central Nevada indicate that parts of the area experienced counterclockwise vertical-axis rotation, and these data provide constraints on the extent and timing of rotation. Counterclockwise vertical-axis rotation probably exceeding 30?? is indicated for Oligocene to lower Miocene rocks in the central part of the study area. Paleomagnetic data indicate that Oligocene to lower Miocene rocks at some localities in the northern and southern parts of the study area (e.g., the Golconda Canyon locality) probably did not experience significant Tertiary counterclockwise rotation. -from Authors

  16. Chemical and nutritional composition of tejate, a traditional maize and cacao beverage from the Central Valleys of Oaxaca, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Sotelo, Angela; Soleri, Daniela; Wacher, Carmen; Sánchez-Chinchillas, Argelia; Argote, Rosa Maria

    2012-06-01

    Foam-topped cacao and maize beverages have a long history in Mesoamerica. Tejate is such a beverage found primarily in the Zapotec region of the Central Valleys of Oaxaca, Mexico. Historically tejate has been ceremonially important but also as an essential staple, especially during periods of hard fieldwork. However, the nutritional contribution of traditional foods such as tejate has not been investigated. We analyzed tejate samples from three Central Valley communities, vendors in urban Oaxaca markets and one migrant vendor in California, USA for their proximate composition, amino acid content and scores, and mineral and methylxanthine content. Nutritional and chemical variation exists among tejate recipes, however, the beverage is a source of energy, fat, methylxanthines, K, Fe and other minerals although their availability due to presence of phytates remains to be determined. Tejate is a source of protein comparable to an equal serving size of tortillas, with protein quality similarly limited in both. Tejate provides the nutritional benefits of maize, and some additional ones, in a form appealing during hot periods of intense work, and year round because of its cultural significance. Its substitution by sodas and other high glycemic beverages may have negative nutritional, health and cultural consequences. PMID:22407326

  17. Temporal trends analysis of 2004 to 2012 toxicity and pesticide data for California's Central Valley water quality coalitions.

    PubMed

    Hall, Lenwood W; Anderson, Ronald D

    2014-01-01

    This study was designed to assess temporal trends of 2004-2012 toxicity data from three water column tests, one sediment test and concentrations of three pesticides from four Central Valley Water Quality Coalitions in California. Major conclusions based on this extensive toxicity and pesticide data from 150 mainstem and tributary sites showed a significant decline in toxicity over 9 years from Ceriodaphnia dubia water column toxicity tests and a significant decline in toxicity from three water column and one sediment toxicity test combined. The organophosphate insecticides diazinon and chlorpyrifos also showed a significant decline in concentrations from 2004 to 2012 and also a significant decline in the percent of samples that exceeded water quality objectives for both of these insecticides. The analysis conducted did not show any cases of either increased toxicity or pesticide concentrations over the 9-year period. The final conclusion from this analysis is that water quality conditions in the Central Valley Region of California, as measured by the toxicity and pesticide data from this study, have improved from 2004 to 2012. PMID:24279623

  18. Single-Station Passive Seismic Stratigraphy for the characterization of subsurface structure of the Valtellina valley (central Alps, northern Italy)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mele, M.; Bini, A.; Bassi, S.; Giudici, M.; Monti, M.; Azzola, M.

    2012-04-01

    The reconstruction of the subsurface structure of alpine valleys plays a key-role in the evaluation of their genesis, entrenchment and tectonic evolution. As a matter of fact, their characterization is strictly dependent on borehole data (water wells, shallow geognostic logs) and land based, deep seismic reflection/refraction lines; unfortunately, the availability of these datasets is often limited by economic and logistical limitations. In this work the subsurface structure of the Valtellina buried valley (central Alps, northern Italy) was investigated by the means of Single-Station Passive Seismic Stratigraphy (S-SPSS), which yields the 1D shear velocity (Vs) profiles, based on the Horizontal to Vertical Spectral Ratios (HVSR) of microtremors produced by Raleigh waves trapped in the ground and provided by measurements of the resonance frequencies produced by a layered seismic stratigraphy. The study area is the central part of Valtellina, W-E oriented along the Insubric line and drained by the Adda river. The sedimentary succession is known by shallow (

  19. Effects of Altered Weather Variables and Increased CO2 Concentrations on the Main Agricultural Crops of California's Central Valley Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flores-Lopez, F.; Young, C. A.; Tansey, M.; Yates, D.

    2010-12-01

    Potential changes in crop water demand and due to climate change is a growing concern among scientists and policy makers. In this study we analyze the potential response of evapotranspiration to climate change through the estimation of agricultural crops water use response to altered weather variables (temperature, precipitation, solar radiation, relative humidity, and wind speed) and an increased atmospheric CO2 concentration. Changes in growing season length, production of biomass and crop yields are also estimated through the use of downscaled climate futures selected to cover a wide range of the existing GCM results. An existing model, the Land, Air, and Water Simulator (LAWS) has been modified to include algorithms that account for the effects of altered weather variables, and the modeling of the top five agricultural crops in three representative regions of the Californias Central Valley Project System (Sacramento, San Joaquin river basin and the Delta area) is described. Study results show that atmospheric conditions can have complex and opposing influences on important evaluation metrics such as plant transpiration rates and cumulative water use, initiation and duration of the growing season, biomass production and crop yields. The magnitude of changes relative to historic conditions could be significant. Additional simulations are underway to expand the scope of the results throughout the Californias Central Valley Project System. These results will be directly relevant to the development of climate adaptation strategies effecting future Delta inflows.

  20. Hydrogeology of the Helena Valley-fill aquifer system, west-central Montana. Water resources investigation

    SciTech Connect

    Briar, D.W.; Madison, J.P.

    1992-01-01

    The report, which presents the study results, describes the hydrogeology of the valley-fill aquifer system. Specific objectives were to: describe the geometry and the hydraulic characteristics of the aquifer system; define the potentiometric surface and the direction of ground-water flow; locate and quantify sources of ground-water recharge and discharge including surface- and ground-water interactions; and characterize the water quality in terms of susceptibility of the aquifer system to contamination and in terms of concentrations, distribution, and sources of major ions, trace elements, and organic compounds. The results of the study will be useful to the development of a comprehensive management program for the use and protection of the ground-water resources of the Helena Valley.

  1. Valley-Fill Sandstones in the Kootenai Formation on the Crow Indian Reservation, South Central Montana.

    SciTech Connect

    Lopez, D.A.

    1997-10-01

    Subsurface data is being collected, organized, and a digital database is being prepared for the project. An ACCESS database and PC-Arcview will be used to manage and interpret the data. All of the four 30 X 60 geologic quadrangles have been scanned to produce a digital surface geologic data base for the Crow Reservation and all are nearing completion. Writing of the map explanations has begun. Field investigations were nearly completed during this quarter; only minor field checks remain. With the help of a student field assistant from the Crow Tribe, the entire project area was inventoried for the presence of valley-fill deposits in the Kootenai Formation. Field inventory has resulted in the identification of nine exposures of thick valley-fill deposits. These appear to represent at least four major westward-trending valley systems. All the channel localities have been measured and described in detail and paleocurrent data has been collected from all but one locality. In addition, two stratigraphic sections were measured in areas where channels are absent.

  2. Poisoning deaths in Central China (Hubei): A 10-year retrospective study of forensic autopsy cases.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Lan; Liu, Liang; Chang, Lin; Li, Ling

    2011-01-01

    A retrospective study of autopsy cases was conducted at the Department of Forensic Medicine, Tongji Medical College (DFM-TMC), in Hubei, China to describe the characteristics of poisoning deaths from 1999 to 2008. A total of 212 poisoning deaths were investigated by DFM-TMC during the 10-year period. The poisoning deaths ranged from 17 cases in 1999 to 27 cases in 2008. Of the 212 cases, 82 deaths (38.7%) were from pesticides, 36 deaths (17.0%) from carbon monoxide, 34 deaths (16.0%) from drugs, 22 deaths (10.4%) from alcohol, 17 deaths (8.0%) from other chemicals, 15 deaths (7.1%) from poisonous plants and animals, and six deaths (2.8%) from heavy metals. Of the 82 pesticide poisoning deaths, 43 (52.4%) cases were caused by rodenticides, mainly tetramine (N = 39). The majority of poisoning deaths were accidents (63.7%), followed by suicides (25.9%) and homicides (3.8%). The manner of death could not be determined in 14 cases (6.6%). PMID:21198624

  3. Wild food plants and wild edible fungi in two valleys of the Qinling Mountains (Shaanxi, central China)

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The aim of the study was to investigate knowledge and use of wild food plants in two mountain valleys separated by Mount Taibai – the highest peak of northern China and one of its biodiversity hotspots, each adjacent to species-rich temperate forest vegetation. Methods Seventy two free lists were collected among the inhabitants of two mountain valleys (36 in each). All the studied households are within walking distance of primary forest vegetation, however the valleys differed in access to urban centers: Houzhenzi is very isolated, and the Dali valley has easier access to the cities of central Shaanxi. Results Altogether, 185 wild food plant species and 17 fungi folk taxa were mentioned. The mean number of freelisted wild foods was very high in Houzhenzi (mean 25) and slightly lower in Dali (mean 18). An average respondent listed many species of wild vegetables, a few wild fruits and very few fungi. Age and male gender had a positive but very low effect on the number of taxa listed. Twelve taxa of wild vegetables (Allium spp., Amaranthus spp., Caryopteris divaricata, Helwingia japonica, Matteucia struthiopteris, Pteridium aquilinum, Toona sinensis, Cardamine macrophylla, Celastrus orbiculatus, Chenopodium album, Pimpinella sp., Staphylea bumalda &S. holocarpa), two species of edible fruits (Akebia trifoliata, Schisandra sphenanthera) and none of the mushrooms were freelisted by at least half of the respondents in one or two of the valleys. Conclusion The high number of wild vegetables listed is due to the high cultural position of this type of food in China compared to other parts of the world, as well as the high biodiversity of the village surroundings. A very high proportion of woodland species (42%, double the number of the ruderal species used) among the listed taxa is contrary to the general stereotype that wild vegetables in Asia are mainly ruderal species. The very low interest in wild mushroom collecting is noteworthy and is difficult to explain. It may arise from the easy access to the cultivated Auricularia and Lentinula mushrooms and very steep terrain, making foraging for fungi difficult. PMID:23587149

  4. Dynamic Adjustments in Channel Width in Response to a Forced Diversion: Gower Gulch, Death Valley National Park, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snyder, N. P.; Kammer, L. L.

    2007-12-01

    We study the 1941 diversion of Furnace Creek Wash (drainage area 439 km2) into Gower Gulch (5.8 km2) as an experiment in the transient response of channel geometry to a large change in water and sediment discharge. We measure sequential changes in valley width using a time series of aerial photographs (1948-1995), airborne laser elevation data from 2005, and a field survey. We find that response of the system varies depending on the pre-diversion channel morphology and geology. In two steep knickzone segments, narrowing, knickpoint retreat, and bedrock incision dominates-- a detachment-limited response. In the relatively low-gradient main part of Gower Gulch, fine-grained, soft sedimentary rocks underlie the channel, and widening dominates as the large, coarse post-diversion sediment load covers the channel bed. The response in this section is transport limited, with only modest incision and adjustments in gradient. Two different processes appear to cause the channel to widen. (1) In many reaches, the stream is attacking the valley walls, as evidenced by fresh plucking and scour marks. This probably occurs because the bed in the middle of the channel is alluviated and protected, which minimizes the opportunity for vertical incision. (2) Some reaches have experienced aggradation, which widens the valley by filling it in. This occurs in places where storage space exists (splay deposits in small tributary mouths, fill terraces in the wide valleys at larger tributary mouths) or in reaches upstream of constrictions. Over long periods, the lowering rate of Gower Gulch probably depends on knickpoint retreat, but the present-day response of this non-steady-state system is a hybrid of incision and narrowing in detachment-limited reaches and widening in transport-limited reaches. This system demonstrates the importance of initial conditions and evolving channel geometry in setting the transient response of rivers.

  5. Central California Valley Ecoregion: Chapter 17 in Status and trends of land change in the Western United States--1973 to 2000

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sleeter, Benjamin M.

    2012-01-01

    The Central California Valley Ecoregion, which covers approximately 45,983 km2 (17,754 mi2), is an elongated basin extending approximately 650 km north to south through central California (fig. 1) (Omernik, 1987; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1997). The ecoregion is surrounded entirely by the Southern and Central California Chaparral and Oak Woodlands Ecoregion, which includes parts of the Coast Ranges to the west and which is bounded by the Sierra Nevada to the east. The Central California Valley Ecoregion accounts for more than half of California’s agricultural production value and is one of the most important agricultural regions in the country, with flat terrain, fertile soils, a favorable climate, and nearly 70 percent of its land in cultivation (Kuminoff and others, 2000; Sumner and others, 2003). Commodities produced in the region include milk and dairy, cattle and calves, cotton, almonds, citrus, and grapes, among others (U.S. Department of Agriculture, 2004; Johnston and McCalla, 2004; Kuminoff and others, 2000) (figs. 2A,B,C). Six of the top eight agricultural-producing counties in California are located at least partly within the Central California Valley Ecoregion (Kuminoff and others, 2000) (table 1). The Central California Valley Ecoregion is also home to nearly 5 million people spread throughout the region, including the major cities of Sacramento (state capital), Fresno, Bakersfield, and Stockton, California (U.S. Census Bureau, 2000) (fig. 1).

  6. Estuarine fluvial floodplain formation in the Holocene Lower Tagus valley (Central Portugal) and implications for Quaternary fluvial system evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Schriek, Tim; Passmore, David G.; Rolão, Jose; Stevenson, Anthony C.

    2007-11-01

    We present a brief synthesis of the Quaternary fluvial record in the Lower Tagus Basin (central Portugal), concentrating on factors controlling infill and incision. The Holocene part of the record forms the focus of this paper and guides the questioning of the basic assumptions of the established Quaternary fluvial evolution model, in particular the link between sea-level change and fluvial incision-deposition. We suggest that several incision-aggradation phases may have occurred during glacial periods. Major aggradation events may overlap with cold episodes, while incision appears to concentrate on the warming limb of climate transitions. The complex stratigraphy of the Quaternary record in the Lower Tagus valley is influenced by repeated base-level and climate changes. This paper submits the first chronostratigraphic framework for valley fill deposits in the Lower Tagus area. Sea-level rise forced aggradation and controlled deposition of the fine-grained sedimentary wedge underlying the low-gradient Lower Tagus floodplain. Investigations have focused on the lower Muge tributary, where rapidly aggrading estuarine and fluvial environments were abruptly established (∼8150 cal BP) as sea level rose. Base level at the valley mouth controlled the upstream extent of the fine-grained backfill. Tidal environments disappeared abruptly (∼5800 cal BP) when the open estuary at the Muge confluence was infilled by the Tagus River. The decrease and final still stand of sea-level rise led to floodplain stabilisation with peat (∼6400-5200 cal BP) and soil formation (∼5200-2200 cal BP). Localised renewed sedimentation (∼2200-200 cal BP) is linked to human activity.

  7. Principal facts for gravity stations in the Antelope Valley-Bedell Flat area, west-central Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jewel, Eleanore B.; Ponce, David A.; Morin, Robert L.

    2000-01-01

    In April 2000 the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) established 211 gravity stations in the Antelope Valley and Bedell Flat area of west-central Nevada (see figure 1). The stations were located about 15 miles north of Reno, Nevada, southwest of Dogskin Mountain, and east of Petersen Mountain, concentrated in Antelope Valley and Bedell Flat (figure 2). The ranges in this area primarily consist of normal-faulted Cretaceous granitic rocks, with some volcanic and metavolcanic rocks. The purpose of the survey was to characterize the hydrogeologic framework of Antelope Valley and Bedell Flat in support of future hydrologic investigations. The information developed during this study can be used in groundwater models. Gravity data were collected between latitude 39°37.5' and 40°00' N and longitude 119°37.5' and 120°00' W. The stations were located on the Seven Lakes Mountain, Dogskin Mountain, Granite Peak, Bedell Flat, Fraser Flat, and Reno NE 7.5 minute quadrangles. All data were tied to secondary base station RENO-A located on the campus of the University of Nevada at Reno (UNR) in Reno, Nevada (latitude 39°32.30' N, longitude 119°48.70' W, observed gravity value 979674.69 mGal). The value for observed gravity was calculated by multiple ties to the base station RENO (latitude 39°32.30' N, longitude 119°48.70' W, observed gravity value 979674.65 mGal), also on the UNR campus. The isostatic gravity map (figure 3) includes additional data sets from the following sources: 202 stations from a Geological Survey digital data set (Ponce, 1997), and 126 stations from Thomas C. Carpenter (written commun., 1998).

  8. Heat flow in Railroad Valley, Nevada and implications for geothermal resources in the south-central Great Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, C.F.; Sass, J.H.

    2006-01-01

    The Great Basin is a province of high average heat flow (approximately 90 mW m-2), with higher values characteristic of some areas and relatively low heat flow (<60 mW m-2) characteristic of an area in south-central Nevada known as the Eureka Low. There is hydrologie and thermal evidence that the Eureka Low results from a relatively shallow, hydrologically controlled heat sink associated with interbasin water flow in the Paleozoic carbonate aquifers. Evaluating this hypothesis and investigating the thermal state of the Eureka Low at depth is a high priority for the US Geological Survey as it prepares a new national geothermal resource assessment. Part of this investigation is focused on Railroad Valley, the site of the largest petroleum reservoirs in Nevada and one of the few locations within the Eureka Low with a known geothermal system. Temperature and thermal conductivity data have been acquired from wells in Railroad Valley in order to determine heat flow in the basin. The results reveal a complex interaction of cooling due to shallow ground-water flow, relatively low (49 to 76 mW m-2) conductive heat flow at depth in most of the basin, and high (up to 234 mW m-2) heat flow associated with the 125??C geothermal system that encompasses the Bacon Flat and Grant Canyon oil fields. The presence of the Railroad Valley geothermal resource within the Eureka Low may be reflect the absence of deep ground-water flow sweeping heat out of the basin. If true, this suggests that other areas in the carbonate aquifer province may contain deep geothermal resources that are masked by ground-water flow.

  9. Climate change impact on future water resources availability for a semi-arid area (Ferghana Valley, Central Asia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radchenko, Iuliia; Breuer, Lutz; Mannig, Birgit; Frede, Hans-Georg

    2014-05-01

    Considering increasing temperatures and glacier recession during the last decades, it is of high interest to study the climate change impact on water resources availability in semi-arid regions of Central Asia. The Ferghana Valley is surrounded by the Tien-Shan and Pamiro-Alay mountain systems that store big amounts of water in snowpacks and glaciers. In the valley the agricultural activity of local people strongly depends on available water from the Syrdarya River. The river is formed by the confluence of the Naryn and Karadarya Rivers, which are mainly fed by the glacier and snow melt from the Akshiirak and Ferghana ridges of the aforementioned mountain systems. The small upper river basins of the valley also contribute with runoff (~34 %) to the Syrdarya River. These small rivers are mainly fed by precipitation and seasonal snow melt. Thus, because of climate change and glacier decline, it is necessary to investigate the comparative contribution of the small catchments versus two big river basins to the Syrdarya River system, as these small upper catchments could become more important for future water consumption. In this study the conceptual hydrological HBV-light model has been calibrated and validated for the period 1980-1985 over 18 upper catchments that feed the Syrdarya River from the surrounding mountain ridges. Dynamically downscaled climate change scenarios were then applied up to the year 2100 for these basins. The scenarios were generated by means of Global Circulation Model (ECHAM5) and Regional Climate Model (REMO) with a baseline period from 1971 till 2000. We will present modelling results of water resources, the contribution of small rivers to the Syrdarya River and to what extent this contribution is likely to change in the future. Moreover, the results of simulated potential runoff will be used to develop future climate change adaptation strategies regarding socio-economic and environmental sustainable water use.

  10. Regional simulations to quantify land use change and irrigation impacts on hydroclimate in the California Central Valley

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Jiming; Miller, Norman L.

    2011-06-01

    In this study, the influence of land use change and irrigation in the California Central Valley is quantified using the Pennsylvania State University/National Center for Atmospheric Research fifth generation Mesoscale Model (MM5) coupled with the Community Land Model version 3 (CLM3). The simulations were forced with modern-day and presettlement land use types at 30-km spatial resolution for the period 1 October 1995 to 30 September 1996. This study shows that land use change has significantly altered the structure of the planetary boundary layer (PBL) that affects near-surface temperature. In contrast, many land-use change studies indicate that albedo and evapotranspiration variations are the key processes influencing climate at local-to-regional scales. Our modeling results show that modern-day daily maximum near-surface air temperature (Tmax) has decreased due to agricultural expansion since presettlement. This decrease is caused by weaker sensible heat flux resulting from the lower surface roughness lengths associated with modern-day crops. The lower roughness lengths in the Central Valley also result in stronger winds that lead to a higher PBL. The higher PBL produces stronger sensible heat flux, causing nighttime warming. In addition to land use change, cropland irrigation has also affected hydroclimate processes within the California Central Valley. We generated a 10-member MM5-CLM3 ensemble simulation, where each ensemble member was forced by a fixed volumetric soil water content (SWC) between 3% and 30%, at 3% intervals, over the irrigated areas during a spring-summer growing season, 1 March to 31 August 1996. The results show that irrigation lowers the modern-day cropland surface temperature. Daytime cooling is produced by irrigation-related evaporation enhancement. This increased evaporation also dominates the nighttime surface cooling process. Surface cooling and the resulting weaker sensible heat flux further lower the near-surface air temperature. Thus, irrigation strengthens the daytime near-surface air temperature reduction that is caused by land use change, and a similar temperature change is seen for observations over irrigated cropland. Based on our modeling results, the nighttime near-surface warming induced by land use change is alleviated by low-intensity irrigation (17% < SWC < 19%), but such warming completely reverses to a cooling effect under high-intensity irrigation (SWC > 19%). The land use changes discussed in this study are commonly observed in many regions of the world, and the physical processes identified here can be used to better understand temperature variations over other areas with similar land cover changes.

  11. Comparison of sediment supply to San Francisco Bay from watersheds draining the Bay Area and the Central Valley of California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McKee, L.J.; Lewicki, M.; Schoellhamer, D.H.; Ganju, N.K.

    2013-01-01

    Quantifying suspended sediment loads is important for managing the world's estuaries in the context of navigation, pollutant transport, wetland restoration, and coastal erosion. To address these needs, a comprehensive analysis was completed on sediment supply to San Francisco Bay from fluvial sources. Suspended sediment, optical backscatter, velocity data near the head of the estuary, and discharge data obtained from the output of a water balance model were used to generate continuous suspended sediment concentration records and compute loads to the Bay from the large Central Valley watershed. Sediment loads from small tributary watersheds around the Bay were determined using 235 station-years of suspended sediment data from 38 watershed locations, regression analysis, and simple modeling. Over 16 years, net annual suspended sediment load to the head of the estuary from its 154,000 km2 Central Valley watershed varied from 0.13 to 2.58 (mean = 0.89) million metric t of suspended sediment, or an average yield of 11 metric t/km2/yr. Small tributaries, totaling 8145 km2, in the nine-county Bay Area discharged between 0.081 and 4.27 (mean = 1.39) million metric t with a mean yield of 212 metric t/km2/yr. The results indicate that the hundreds of urbanized and tectonically active tributaries adjacent to the Bay, which together account for just 5% of the total watershed area draining to the Bay and provide just 7% of the annual average fluvial flow, supply 61% of the suspended sediment. The small tributary loads are more variable (53-fold between years compared to 21-fold for the inland Central Valley rivers) and dominated fluvial sediment supply to the Bay during 10 out of 16 yr. If San Francisco Bay is typical of other estuaries in active tectonic or climatically variable coastal regimes, managers responsible for water quality, dredging and reusing sediment accumulating in shipping channels, or restoring wetlands in the world's estuaries may need to more carefully account for proximal small urbanized watersheds that may dominate sediment supply.

  12. Vivid valleys, pallid peaks? Hypsometric variations and rural–urban land change in the Central Peruvian Andes

    PubMed Central

    Haller, Andreas

    2012-01-01

    What happens to the land cover within the hinterland's altitudinal belts while Central Andean cities are undergoing globalization and urban restructuring? What conclusions can be drawn about changes in human land use? By incorporating a regional altitudinal zonation model, direct field observations and GIS analyses of remotely sensed long term data, the present study examines these questions using the example of Huancayo Metropolitano – an emerging Peruvian mountain city of 420,000 inhabitants, situated at 3260 m asl in the Mantaro Valley. The study's results indicate that rapid urban growth during the late 1980s and early 1990s was followed by the agricultural intensification and peri-urban condominization at the valley floor (quechua) – since the beginning of Peru's neoliberal era. Moreover, regarding the adjoining steep slopes (suni) and subsequent grassland ecosystems (puna), the research output presents land cover change trajectories that clearly show an expansion of human land use, such as reforestation for wood production and range burning for livestock grazing, even at high altitudes – despite rural–urban migration trends and contrary to several results of extra-Andean studies. Consequently, rural–urban planners and policy makers are challenged to focus on the manifold impacts of globalization on human land use – at all altitudinal belts of the Andean city's hinterland: toward sustainable mountain development that bridges the social and physical gaps – from the bottom up. PMID:23564987

  13. Pliocene and Pleistocene geologic and climatic evolution in the San Luis Valley of south-central Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rogers, K.L.; Larson, E.E.; Smith, G.; Katzman, D.; Smith, G.R.; Cerling, T.; Wang, Y.; Baker, R.G.; Lohmann, K.C.; Repenning, C.A.; Patterson, P.; Mackie, G.

    1992-01-01

    Sediments of the Alamosa Formation spanning the upper part of the Gauss and most of the Matuyama Chrons were recovered by coring in the high (2300 m) San Luis Valley of south-central Colorado. The study site is located at the northern end of the Rio Grande rift. Lithologic changes in the core sediments provide evidence of events leading to integration of the San Luis drainage basin into the Rio Grande. The section, which includes the Huckleberry Ridge Ash (2.02 Ma) and spans the entire Matuyama Chron, contains pollen, and invertebrate and vertebrate fossils. Stable isotope analyses of inorganic and biogenic carbonate taken over most of the core indicate substantially warmer temperatures than occur today in the San Luis Valley. At the end of the Olduvai Subchron, summer precipitation decreased, summer pan evaporation increased, and temperatures increased slightly compared to the earlier climate represented in the core. By the end of the Jaramillo Subchron, however, cold/wet and warm/dry cycles become evident and continue into the cold/wet regime associated with the deep-sea oxygen-isotope Stage 22 glaciation previously determined from outcrops at the same locality. Correspondence between the Hansen Bluff climatic record and the deep-sea oxygen-isotope record (oxygen-isotope stages from about 110-18) is apparent, indicating that climate at Hansen Bluff was responding to global climatic changes. ?? 1992.

  14. Vivid valleys, pallid peaks? Hypsometric variations and rural-urban land change in the Central Peruvian Andes.

    PubMed

    Haller, Andreas

    2012-11-01

    What happens to the land cover within the hinterland's altitudinal belts while Central Andean cities are undergoing globalization and urban restructuring? What conclusions can be drawn about changes in human land use? By incorporating a regional altitudinal zonation model, direct field observations and GIS analyses of remotely sensed long term data, the present study examines these questions using the example of Huancayo Metropolitano - an emerging Peruvian mountain city of 420,000 inhabitants, situated at 3260 m asl in the Mantaro Valley. The study's results indicate that rapid urban growth during the late 1980s and early 1990s was followed by the agricultural intensification and peri-urban condominization at the valley floor (quechua) - since the beginning of Peru's neoliberal era. Moreover, regarding the adjoining steep slopes (suni) and subsequent grassland ecosystems (puna), the research output presents land cover change trajectories that clearly show an expansion of human land use, such as reforestation for wood production and range burning for livestock grazing, even at high altitudes - despite rural-urban migration trends and contrary to several results of extra-Andean studies. Consequently, rural-urban planners and policy makers are challenged to focus on the manifold impacts of globalization on human land use - at all altitudinal belts of the Andean city's hinterland: toward sustainable mountain development that bridges the social and physical gaps - from the bottom up. PMID:23564987

  15. The environmental costs of mountaintop mining valley fill operations for aquatic ecosystems of the Central Appalachians.

    PubMed

    Bernhardt, Emily S; Palmer, Margaret A

    2011-03-01

    Southern Appalachian forests are recognized as a biodiversity hot spot of global significance, particularly for endemic aquatic salamanders and mussels. The dominant driver of land-cover and land-use change in this region is surface mining, with an ever-increasing proportion occurring as mountaintop mining with valley fill operations (MTVF). In MTVF, seams of coal are exposed using explosives, and the resulting noncoal overburden is pushed into adjacent valleys to facilitate coal extraction. To date, MTVF throughout the Appalachians have converted 1.1 million hectares of forest to surface mines and buried more than 2,000 km of stream channel beneath mining overburden. The impacts of these lost forests and buried streams are propagated throughout the river networks of the region as the resulting sediment and chemical pollutants are transmitted downstream. There is, to date, no evidence to suggest that the extensive chemical and hydrologic alterations of streams by MTVF can be offset or reversed by currently required reclamation and mitigation practices. PMID:21449964

  16. Kinematics at the intersection of the Garlock and Death Valley fault zones, California: Integration of TM data and field studies. LANDSAT TM investigation proposal TM-019

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abrams, Michael; Verosub, Ken

    1987-01-01

    Processing and interpretation of Thematic Mapper (TM) data, extensive field work, and processing of SPOT data were continued. Results of these analyses led to the testing and rejecting of several of the geologic/tectonic hypotheses concerning the continuation of the Garlock Fault Zone (GFZ). It was determined that the Death Valley Fault Zone (DVFZ) is the major through-going feature, extending at least 60 km SW of the Avawatz Mountains. Two 5 km wide fault zones were identified and characterized in the Soda and Bristol Mountains, forming a continuous zone of NW trending faulting. Geophysical measurements indicate a buried connection between the Avawatz and the Soda Mountains Fault Zone. Future work will involve continued field work and mapping at key locations, further analyses of TM data, and conclusion of the project.

  17. Using remote sensing and GIS techniques to estimate discharge and recharge. fluxes for the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    D'Agnese, F. A.; Faunt, C.C.; Keith, Turner A.

    1996-01-01

    The recharge and discharge components of the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system were defined by remote sensing and GIS techniques that integrated disparate data types to develop a spatially complex representation of near-surface hydrological processes. Image classification methods were applied to multispectral satellite data to produce a vegetation map. This map provided a basis for subsequent evapotranspiration and infiltration estimations. The vegetation map was combined with ancillary data in a GIS to delineate different types of wetlands, phreatophytes and wet playa areas. Existing evapotranspiration-rate estimates were then used to calculate discharge volumes for these areas. A previously used empirical method of groundwater recharge estimation was modified by GIS methods to incorporate data describing soil-moisture conditions, and a recharge potential map was produced. These discharge and recharge maps were readily converted to data arrays for numerical modelling codes. Inverse parameter estimation techniques also used these data to evaluate the reliability and sensitivity of estimated values.

  18. Study of LANDSAT-D thematic mapper performance as applied to hydrocarbon exploration. [Southern Ontario, Lawton, Oklahoma; Owl Creek, Wyoming; Washington, D.C.; and Death Valley California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Everett, J. R. (Principal Investigator)

    1983-01-01

    Improved delineation of known oil and gas fields in southern Ontario and a spectacularly high amount of structural information on the Owl Creek, Wyoming scene were obtained from analysis of TM data. The use of hue, saturation, and value image processing techniques on a Death Valley, California scene permitted direct comparison of TM processed imagery with existing 1:250,000 scale geological maps of the area and revealed small outcrops of Tertiary volcanic material overlying Paleozoic sections. Analysis of TM data over Lawton, Oklahoma suggests that the reducing chemical environment associated with hydrocarbon seepage change ferric iron to soluble ferrous iron, allowing it to be leached. Results of the band selection algorithm show a suprising consistency, with the 1,4,5 combination selected as optimal in most cases.

  19. Expert system-based mineral mapping in northern Death Valley, California/Nevada, using the Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kruse, F. A.; Lefkoff, A. B.; Dietz, J. B.

    1993-01-01

    Integrated analysis of imaging spectrometer data and field spectral measurements were used in conjunction with conventional geologic field mapping to characterize bedrock and surficial geology at the northern end of Death Valley, California and Nevada. A knowledge-based expert system was used to automatically produce image maps showing the principal surface mineralogy from Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) data. Linear spectral unmixing of the AVIRIS data allowed further determination of relative mineral, abundances and identification of mineral assemblages and mixtures. The imaging spectrometer data show the spatial distribution of spectrally distinct minerals occurring both as primary rockforming minerals and as alteration and weathering products. Field spectral measurements were used to verify the mineral maps and field mapping was used to extend the remote sensing results. Geographically referenced image maps produced from these data form new base maps from which to develop improved understanding of the processes of deposition and erosion affecting the present land surface.

  20. Rise and tilt of metamorphic rocks in the lower plate of a detachment fault in the Funeral Mountains, Death Valley, California

    SciTech Connect

    Hoisch, T.D. ); Simpson, C. )

    1993-04-10

    The authors attempt to integrate new and old observations on the Funeral Mountains, in Death Valley, California, into an integrated model of the evolution of the lower plate in this region. This area consists of a detachment fault. Much effort has been directed toward explaining the development of detachment faults. Extensive petrologic, geochronologic and mapping evidence had been developed. The authors combine thermobarometric data on unsheared metamorphic rock in this region, kinematic analysis of folding in the area, and new geochronologic data from fission track measurements, K-Ar and [sup 40]Ar/[sup 39]Ar dating measurements. Their conclusion is that the data supports the feature of models for detachment faulting which claim that a fault surface dips and undergoes a rotation to a horizontal orientation, accompanied by a comparable tilt of the lower plate. 64 refs., 19 figs., 4 tabs.

  1. Ranking of prophylactic efficacy of poly(ICLC) against Rift Valley fever virus infection in mice by incremental relative risk of death.

    PubMed Central

    Kende, M; Lupton, H W; Rill, W L; Gibbs, P; Levy, H B; Canonico, P G

    1987-01-01

    The prophylactic efficacy of poly(ICLC) (stabilized, synthetic, double-stranded polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidylic acid) against Rift Valley fever virus infection in Swiss-Webster mice was dependent on the treatment schedule. The treatment schedule was optimized by ranking the results of various treatments by the Cox proportional-hazard model based on the incremental relative risk of death. With this ranking procedure, the schedule of choice was three doses of 20 micrograms each given 5 days apart. This regimen yielded a 90% survival rate. Additional parameters were determined, including the timing of the first and second drug dose, the temporal relationship of these treatments to the day of challenge, and the minimal effective dose (1 microgram per mouse). Images PMID:3631943

  2. Using a Three-Dimensional Hydrogeologic Framework to Investigate Potential Sources of Water Springs in the Death Valley Regional Groundwater Flow System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hill, M. C.; Belcher, W. R.; Sweetkind, D. S.; Faunt, C.

    2014-12-01

    The Death Valley regional groundwater flow system encompasses a proposed site for a high-level nuclear waste repository of the United States of America, the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS), where nuclear weapons were tested, and National Park and BLM properties, and provides water for local communities. The model was constructed using a three-dimensional hydrogeologic framework and has been used as a resource planning mechanism by the many stakeholders involved, including four United States (U.S) federal agencies (U.S. Department of Energy, National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) and local counties, towns, and residents. One of the issues in recent model development is simulation of insufficient water to regional discharge areas which form springs in valleys near the center of the system. Given what seems to be likely rock characteristics and geometries at depth, insufficient water is simulated to reach the discharge areas. This "surprise" thus challenges preconceived notions about the system. Here we use the hydrogeologic model to hypothesize alternatives able to produce the observed flow and use the groundwater simulation to test the hypotheses with other available data. Results suggest that the transmissivity measurements need to be used carefully because wells in this system are never fully penetrating, that multiple alternatives are able to produce the springflow, and that one most likely alternative cannot be identified given available data. Consequences of the alternatives are discussed.

  3. Using remote sensing and GIS techniques to estimate discharge and recharge fluxes for the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    D'Agnese, F. A.; Faunt, C.C.; Turner, A.K.

    1996-01-01

    The recharge and discharge components of the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system were defined by techniques that integrated disparate data types to develop a spatially complex representation of near-surface hydrological processes. Image classification methods were applied to multispectral satellite data to produce a vegetation map. The vegetation map was combined with ancillary data in a GIS to delineate different types of wetlands, phreatophytes and wet playa areas. Existing evapotranspiration-rate estimates were used to calculate discharge volumes for these area. An empirical method of groundwater recharge estimation was modified to incorporate data describing soil-moisture conditions, and a recharge potential map was produced. These discharge and recharge maps were readily converted to data arrays for numerical modelling codes. Inverse parameter estimation techniques also used these data to evaluate the reliability and sensitivity of estimated values.The recharge and discharge components of the Death Valley regional groundwater flow system were defined by remote sensing and GIS techniques that integrated disparate data types to develop a spatially complex representation of near-surface hydrological processes. Image classification methods were applied to multispectral satellite data to produce a vegetation map. This map provided a basis for subsequent evapotranspiration and infiltration estimations. The vegetation map was combined with ancillary data in a GIS to delineate different types of wetlands, phreatophytes and wet playa areas. Existing evapotranspiration-rate estimates were then used to calculate discharge volumes for these areas. A previously used empirical method of groundwater recharge estimation was modified by GIS methods to incorporate data describing soil-moisture conditions, and a recharge potential map was produced. These discharge and recharge maps were readily converted to data arrays for numerical modelling codes. Inverse parameter estimation techniques also used these data to evaluate the reliability and sensitivity of estimated values.

  4. Luminescence ages for alluvial-fan deposits in Southern Death Valley: Implications for climate-driven sedimentation along a tectonically active mountain front

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sohn, M.F.; Mahan, S.A.; Knott, J.R.; Bowman, D.D.

    2007-01-01

    Controversy exists over whether alluvial-fan sedimentation along tectonically active mountain fronts is driven by climatic changes or tectonics. Knowing the age of sedimentation is the key to understanding the relationship between sedimentation and its cause. Alluvial-fan deposits in Death Valley and throughout the arid southwestern United States have long been the subjects of study, but their ages have generally eluded researchers until recently. Most mapping efforts have recognized at least four major relative-age groupings (Q1 (oldest), Q2, Q3, and Q4 (youngest)), using observed changes in surface soils and morphology, relation to the drainage net, and development of desert pavement. Obtaining numerical age determinations for these morphologic stages has proven challenging. We report the first optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages for three of these four stages deposited within alluvial-fans along the tectonically active Black Mountains of Death Valley. Deposits showing distinct, remnant bar and swale topography (Q3b) have OSL ages from 7 to 4 ka., whereas those with moderate to poorly developed desert pavement and located farther above the active channel (Q3a) have OSL ages from 17 to 11 ka. Geomorphically older deposits with well-developed desert pavement (Q2d) have OSL ages ???25 ka. Using this OSL-based chronology, we note that alluvial-fan deposition along this tectonically active mountain front corresponds to both wet-to-dry and dry-to-wet climate changes recorded globally and regionally. These findings underscore the influence of climate change on alluvial fan deposition in arid and semi-arid regions. ?? 2007 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA.

  5. Adapting to Climate Variability and Change: Experiences from Cereal-Based Farming in the Central Rift and Kobo Valleys, Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kassie, Belay Tseganeh; Hengsdijk, Huib; Rötter, Reimund; Kahiluoto, Helena; Asseng, Senthold; Van Ittersum, Martin

    2013-11-01

    Small-holder farmers in Ethiopia are facing several climate related hazards, in particular highly variable rainfall with severe droughts which can have devastating effects on their livelihoods. Projected changes in climate are expected to aggravate the existing challenges. This study examines farmer perceptions on current climate variability and long-term changes, current adaptive strategies, and potential barriers for successful further adaptation in two case study regions—the Central Rift Valley (CRV) and Kobo Valley. The study was based on a household questionnaire, interviews with key stakeholders, and focus group discussions. The result revealed that about 99 % of the respondents at the CRV and 96 % at the Kobo Valley perceived an increase in temperature and 94 % at CRV and 91 % at the Kobo Valley perceived a decrease in rainfall over the last 20-30 years. Inter-annual and intraseasonal rainfall variability also has increased according to the farmers. The observed climate data (1977-2009) also showed an increasing trend in temperature and high inter-annual and intra-seasonal rainfall variability. In contrast to farmers’ perceptions of a decrease in rainfall totals, observed rainfall data showed no statistically significant decline. The interaction among various bio-physical and socio-economic factors, changes in rainfall intensity and reduced water available to crops due to increased hot spells, may have influenced the perception of farmers with respect to rainfall trends. In recent decades, farmers in both the CRV and Kobo have changed farming practices to adapt to perceived climate change and variability, for example, through crop and variety choice, adjustment of cropping calendar, and in situ moisture conservation. These relatively low-cost changes in farm practices were within the limited adaptation capacity of farmers, which may be insufficient to deal with the impacts of future climate change. Anticipated climate change is expected to impose new risks outside the range of current experiences. To enable farmers to adapt to these impacts critical technological, institutional, and market-access constraints need to be removed. Inconsistencies between farmers’ perceptions and observed climate trends (e.g., decrease in annual rainfall) could lead to sub-optimal or counterproductive adaptations, and therefore must be removed by better communication and capacity building, for example through Climate Field Schools. Enabling strategies, which are among others targeted at agricultural inputs, credit supply, market access, and strengthening of local knowledge and information services need to become integral part of government policies to assist farmers to adapt to the impacts of current and future climate change.

  6. Remote sensing of climate and management driven groundwater storage changes and land subsidence in the Central Valley, CA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, K. J.; Lo, M.; Famiglietti, J. S.; Swenson, S. C.

    2010-12-01

    The Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment (GRACE) reveals a significant negative trend in total water storage for the Central Valley of California for the time period Nov 2003-March 2009. The human fingerprint was separated from the total water storage trend in GRACE using hydrologic models to account for climate driven changes in storage for the region. Supplementary observations of surface water, soil moisture, and snow water equivalent were used to vertically disaggregate total water storage and determine changes in groundwater storage. Results reveal insight on the dominant role of groundwater pumping in aquifer storage and the extension of evaporative fluxes throughout the summer growing season. Groundwater storage changes are compared with GPS observations of land subsidence in the region to determine relationships between groundwater pumping and land surface response.

  7. Central Avra Valley Storage and Recovery Project (CAVSARP) Site, Tucson, Arizona: Floodwater and Soil Moisture Investigations with Extraterrestrial Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rucker, D. F.; Dohm, J. M.; Ferre, T. P. A.; Ip, Felipe; Baker, V. R.; Davies, A. G.; Castano, R.; Chien, S.; Doggett, T. C.

    2004-01-01

    Planetary geologists, geomorphologists, and hydrologists have hypothesized that Mars is a dynamic, water-enriched planet since the Mariner and Viking missions based on geologic, geomorphic, and topographic information. Recent acquisition of Gamma Ray and Neutron Spectrometer information has added further credence to this hypothesis. A unique investigation is underway to work towards being able to successfully map the extent and depth of water on Mars. Researchers from the University of Arizona and members of the Autonomous Sciencecraft Experiment (ASE) have been compiling multiple layers of information in time and space at the Central Avra Valley Storage and Recovery Project (CAVSARP) site, Tucson, Arizona, for eventual comparative analysis. This information has been acquired from a variety of observational/scientific platforms in controlled conditions. CAVSARP facility:

  8. Younger Dryas Cladocera assemblages from two valley mires in central Poland and their potential significance for climate reconstructions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pawłowski, Dominik

    2012-12-01

    Two sections of sediment from small oxbow-lake infillings located in different river valleys in central Poland were studied by cladoceran analysis in order to examine the response of aquatic ecosystems to the Younger Dryas. Lithological and geochemical records, as well as chydorid (Chydoridae) ephippia analysis were also used to reconstruct Younger Dryas climate trends. A high concentration of cladocerans, as well as the presence of Cladocera taxa preferring warmer water, was found. It is likely that local processes in the oxbow lakes were important, because the presence of warm-preferring taxa was also related to their habitats and their development. Yet local environmental forces, such as the influence of the rivers, habitat modification, macrophyte abundance, and eutrophication, were not only major factors to affect the Cladocera diversity in the Younger Dryas. The observation of changes in the composition and concentration of Cladocera in oxbow-lake infillings indicates that most of the changes occurred in response to climate changes.

  9. Soilscape analysis at different scales using pattern indices in the Jarama-Henares interfluve and Henares River valley, Central Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saldaña, A.; Ibáñez, J. J.; Zinck, J. A.

    2011-12-01

    The Jarama-Henares interfluve is located south of the Ayllon range, one of the easternmost ranges of the "Sistema Central" mountains in central Spain. The Henares river valley is asymmetric, with 20 topographic benches along its right bank and a series of glacis-terraces on its left bank. We investigated the soil-geoform units in the Jarama-Henares interfluve and the Henares river valley using several indices to quantify and understand the evolution of soil and landscape patterns of the area during the Plio-Quaternary. Features such fragmentation, dominance, geopedologic unit diversity, relative spatial diversity, size and shape, neighbourhood and interaction were analysed in geopedologic maps prepared at two scales (1:18,000 and 1:50,000) using ancillary data, aerial photographs and field observations. Likewise, the taxonomic pedorichness and pedodiversity were assessed on plot maps at 1:100 scale representing three fluvial terrace areas of different age. Soil diversity analysis was carried out at the subgroup level of the USDA Soil Taxonomy using (1) the number of individuals included in a given pedotaxum, and (2) the areal proportion occupied by each soil taxum in a given map unit. One of the main findings was that the values of the indices were higher and the number of indices required to describe appropriately the soilscape patterns was smaller at the local than at the regional scale, the relative spatial diversity being one of the most useful indices. At the plot scale, taxonomic pedorichness and pedodiversity of soil subgroups increased from low/young to high/old terraces. Thus, pattern indices can be used to characterise soilscape evolution aspects such as diversification due to the behaviour of the depositional system or to relief dissection.

  10. Soil-Landscape Relationships in Jakes Valley, White Pine County, East-Central Nevada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benitez, L.; Garcia, A. F.

    2002-12-01

    Carbonate morphology in soils can be used to estimate the age of landform surfaces. Surficial geologic mapping revealed that landscape relationships in Jakes Valley are in some instances clear enough for determining relative ages of alluvial fan lobes. Where landscape relationships are not clear, soil carbonate morphology was used to estimate relative and absolute ages of alluvial fan lobes on 4 alluvial fans. This method works well in Jakes Valley because all soils are formed in the same parent material (calcareous gravel). Beach ridges in Jakes Valley formed at end of the last glacial maximum (10 to 15 ka). Therefore, soil properties of beach-ridge pedons provide insight regarding the relationship of carbonate morphology to surface age in Jakes Valley. Beach Ridge soils typically consist of locally well formed vesicular A (Av) horizons containing 15 to 25 percent gravel with calcium carbonate coatings on clast bottoms, above Bk horizons consisting of 25 to 85 percent gravel with calcium carbonate coatings on clast bottoms. Local cementation of clasts is common in Bk horizons, and together with the character of carbonate clast coatings, indicates Stage I+ to II carbonate morphology. Four alluvial-fan lobe map units (Qf0 [oldest] through Qf3 [youngest]) were defined on the basis of field geologic mapping and air photo interpretation. Hypotheses based on mapping regarding relative ages of alluvial-fan lobes were evaluated using eleven soil profile characterizations. Soils formed in Qf0 have the greatest carbonate accumulation and soils formed in Qf3 have the least. Qf0 soils include Bkm horizons / petrocalcic horizons occurring at depths of 23 - 102 cm. Horizons below 80 cm are locally brecciated, indicating Stage V to VI carbonate morphology. Qf1 soils have Av surface horizons. Carbonate accumulation features in Qf1 soils include laminar caps on clasts, pendants on clast bottoms, locally cemented clasts, and completely cemented horizons, indicating Stage III to V carbonate morphology. Qf2 fan surfaces are graded to beach ridges and are locally inset into Qf1 fan lobes. Qf2 soils typically have Av surface horizons above Bk horizons. Clasts in Bk horizons are completely coated by carbonate, 5 mm-thick pendants are common on clast bottoms, and clasts are locally cemented, indicating Stage I+ to II carbonate morphology. Qf3 is inset into beach ridges, and into Qf0, Qf1 and Qf2 fan lobes. Qf3 also locally buries beach ridges. Bk horizons in Qf3 soils contain 15 - 45 percent clasts, which commonly have continuous and discontinuous carbonate coatings, which indicates Stage I to I+ carbonate morphology. Faint carbonate coats on ped faces are locally present in Qf3 soils. Based on carbonate morphology, the estimated age of Qf0 and Qf1 is middle Pleistocene. The similarity of beach-ridge soil carbonate morphology to Qf2 soil carbonate morphology supports the hypothesis that Qf2 lobes were deposited at the same time as beach ridges, during the last glacial maxima / pluvial highstand. Weakly developed carbonate morphology in Qf3 soils supports the hypothesis Qf3 fan lobes formed during the very latest Pleistocene and Holocene.

  11. Dabbling duck harvest dynamics in the Central Valley of California--implications for recruitment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miller, M.R.; Beam, J.; Connelly, D.P.

    1988-01-01

    Age and sex ratios and body weights were obtained for northern pintails (Anas acuta), mallards (A. platyrhynchos), American wigeon (A. americana), green-winged teal (A. crecca), and northern shovelers (A. clypeata) shot at Mendota State Wildlife Area in the San Joaquin Valley (SANJV) and at Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge in the Sacramento Valley (SACV) during 1982-83 and 1983-84. Age ratios were determined for pintails at four locations during 1980-83. Cooperative Waterfowl Parts Collection Survey (1982-84; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) and California preseason-banding data (1973-77, for mallards and pintails) also were used to measure age ratios of the California harvest. Harvest rate (ducks shot per day) was obtained and summed from all SACV and SANJV public hunting areas in 1982-84. All species except female wigeon and adult female mallards lost weight between October and January. Except for wigeon, harvest rate was high in October when hunting began. Harvest rates were low in November and December but rose markedly in January in the SACV for all species and for all except pintails in the SANJV. Proportion of adults in the bag as measured by all methods increased progressively through the hunting season. Proportion of adults in the harvest was higher in 1982-83 than in 1983-84 and was greater in the SACV than the SANJV both years for most species. Adult females formed a small component of total kill but 50% or more of female kill. The harvest of pintails at a SACV and a SANJV location consistently contained about half as many immatures per adult as that at two other California locations for 1980-83. The substantial harvest of adults in January eliminates the most productive breeders from the population. Thus, winter hunting mortality may influence age composition of the spring flight and, hence, recruitment potential of the breeding population.

  12. Chronology and climatic implications of Late Quaternary glaciations in the Goriganga valley, central Himalaya, India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nawaz Ali, S.; Biswas, R. H.; Shukla, A. D.; Juyal, N.

    2013-08-01

    Goriganga valley, which is located in the transition zone between the dry steppe of the Tibetan plateau in the north and the sub-humid Himalayan climate in the south, has preserved four events of glaciation with decreasing magnitude. The oldest Stage-I glaciation is represented by a 12.5 km long discontinuous diamictite ridge which terminates north of Rilkot (3100 m asl). The Stage-II glaciation is represented by sub-rounded and partially eroded lateral moraines and terminates around Martoli village (3240 m asl). The Stage-III and IV glacial moraines are sharp crested, unstable and terminate proximal to the present day glacier at 3640 m asl and 3740 m asl respectively. The Stage-II moraines have been optically dated between 25 2 ka and 22 1 ka implying that glacier expanded during the global Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). This is contrary to the suggestion that during Last Glacial maximum (LGM) glaciation was limited in extent due to weak Indian Summer Monsoon (ISM) in the monsoon dominated regions of the Himalaya. We ascribe the LGM glaciations to a combination of the lowered temperature and enhanced mid-latitude westerlies. Following the LGM glaciation, Goriganga valley experienced two major pulses of deglaciation. The older event is dated between 16 and 12 ka and is coeval with the initiation of the ISM whereas the younger events (10-8 ka) represent the early to mid-Holocene strengthened ISM. The Stage-III and IV glaciations which terminated proximal to the modern glacier are speculated to occur during the mid-Holocene and Little Ice Age (LIA) respectively.

  13. A Central Role for Carbon-Overflow Pathways in the Modulation of Bacterial Cell Death

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, Vinai Chittezham; Sadykov, Marat R.; Chaudhari, Sujata S.; Jones, Joselyn; Endres, Jennifer L.; Widhelm, Todd J.; Ahn, Jong-Sam; Jawa, Randeep S.; Zimmerman, Matthew C.; Bayles, Kenneth W.

    2014-01-01

    Similar to developmental programs in eukaryotes, the death of a subpopulation of cells is thought to benefit bacterial biofilm development. However mechanisms that mediate a tight control over cell death are not clearly understood at the population level. Here we reveal that CidR dependent pyruvate oxidase (CidC) and α-acetolactate synthase/decarboxylase (AlsSD) overflow metabolic pathways, which are active during staphylococcal biofilm development, modulate cell death to achieve optimal biofilm biomass. Whereas acetate derived from CidC activity potentiates cell death in cells by a mechanism dependent on intracellular acidification and respiratory inhibition, AlsSD activity effectively counters CidC action by diverting carbon flux towards neutral rather than acidic byproducts and consuming intracellular protons in the process. Furthermore, the physiological features that accompany metabolic activation of cell death bears remarkable similarities to hallmarks of eukaryotic programmed cell death, including the generation of reactive oxygen species and DNA damage. Finally, we demonstrate that the metabolic modulation of cell death not only affects biofilm development but also biofilm-dependent disease outcomes. Given the ubiquity of such carbon overflow pathways in diverse bacterial species, we propose that the metabolic control of cell death may be a fundamental feature of prokaryotic development. PMID:24945831

  14. Methods, quality assurance, and data for assessing atmospheric deposition of pesticides in the Central Valley of California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zamora, Celia; Majewski, Michael S.; Foreman, William T.

    2013-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey monitored atmospheric deposition of pesticides in the Central Valley of California during two studies in 2001 and 2002–04. The 2001 study sampled wet deposition (rain) and storm-drain runoff in the Modesto, California, area during the orchard dormant-spray season to examine the contribution of pesticide concentrations to storm runoff from rainfall. In the 2002–04 study, the number and extent of collection sites in the Central Valley were increased to determine the areal distribution of organophosphate insecticides and other pesticides, and also five more sample types were collected. These were dry deposition, bulk deposition, and three sample types collected from a soil box: aqueous phase in runoff, suspended sediment in runoff, and surficial-soil samples. This report provides concentration data and describes methods and quality assurance of sample collection and laboratory analysis for pesticide compounds in all samples collected from 16 sites. Each sample was analyzed for 41 currently used pesticides and 23 pesticide degradates, including oxygen analogs (oxons) of 9 organophosphate insecticides. Analytical results are presented by sample type and study period. The median concentrations of both chloryprifos and diazinon sampled at four urban (0.067 micrograms per liter [μg/L] and 0.515 μg/L, respectively) and four agricultural sites (0.079 μg/L and 0.583 μg/L, respectively) during a January 2001 storm event in and around Modesto, Calif., were nearly identical, indicating that the overall atmospheric burden in the region appeared to be fairly similar during the sampling event. Comparisons of median concentrations in the rainfall to those in the McHenry storm-drain runoff showed that, for some compounds, rainfall contributed a substantial percentage of the concentration in the runoff; for other compounds, the concentrations in rainfall were much greater than in the runoff. For example, diazinon concentrations in rainfall were about 70 percent of the diazinon concentration in the runoff, whereas the chlorpyrifos concentration in the rain was 1.8 times greater than in the runoff. The more water-soluble pesticides—carbaryl, metolachlor, napropamide, and simazine—followed the same pattern as diazinon and had lower concentrations in rain compared to runoff. Similar to chlorpyrifos,compounds with low water solubilities and higher soil-organic carbon partition coefficients, including dacthal, pendimethalin, and trifluralin, were found to have higher concentrations in rain than in runoff water and were presumed to partition to the suspended sediments and organic matter on the ground. During the 2002–04 study period, the herbicide dacthal had the highest detection frequencies for all sample types collected from the Central Valley sites (67–100 percent). The most frequently detected compounds in the wet-deposition samples were dacthal, diazinon, chlorpyrifos, and simazine (greater than 90 percent). The median wet-deposition amounts for these compounds were 0.044 micrograms per square meter per day (μg/m2/day), 0.209 μg/m2/day, 0.079 μg/m2/day, and 0.172 μg/m2/day, respectively. For the dry-deposition samples, detection frequencies were greater than 73 percent for the compounds dacthal, metolachor, and chlorpyrifos, and median deposition amounts were an order of magnitude less than for wet deposition. The differences between wet deposition and dry deposition appeared to be closely related to the Henry’s Law (H) constant of each compound, although the mass deposited by dry deposition takes place over a much longer time frame. Pesticides detected in rainfall usually were detected in the aqueous phase of the soil-box runoff water, and the runoff concentrations were generally similar to those in the rainfall. For compounds detected in the aqueous phase and suspended-sediment samples of soil-box runoff, concentrations of pesticides in the aqueous phase generally were detected in low concentrations and had few corresponding detections in the suspended- sediment samples. Dacthal, diazinon, chlorpyrifos, and simazine were the most frequently detected pesticides (greater than 83 percent) in the aqueous-phase samples, with median concentrations of 0.010 μg/L, 0.045 μg/L, 0.016 μg/L, and 0.077 μg/L, respectively. Simazine was the most frequently detected compound in the suspended-sediment samples (69 percent), with a median concentration of 0.232 μg/L. Results for compounds detected in the surficial-soil samples collected throughout the study period showed that there was an increase in concentration for some compounds, indicating atmospheric deposition of these compounds onto the soil-box surface. In the San Joaquin Valley, the compounds chlorpyrifos, dacthal, and iprodione were detected at higher concentrations (between 1.4 and 2 times greater) than were found in the background samples collected from the San Joaquin Valley soil-box sites. In the Sacramento Valley, the compounds chlorpyrifos, dacthal, iprodione, parathionmethyl, and its oxygen analog, paraoxon-methyl, were detected in samples collected during the study period in low concentrations, but were not detected in the background concentration of the Sacramento Valley soil mix.

  15. The effects of mountaintop mines and valley fills on the physicochemical quality of stream ecosystems in the central Appalachians: a review.

    PubMed

    Griffith, Michael B; Norton, Susan B; Alexander, Laurie C; Pollard, Amina I; LeDuc, Stephen D

    2012-02-15

    This review assesses the state of the science on the effects of mountaintop mines and valley fills (MTM-VF) on the physicochemical characteristics of streams in the central Appalachian coalfields of West Virginia, Kentucky, Virginia and Tennessee, USA. We focus on the impacts of mountaintop removal coal mining, which involves removing all - or some portion - of the top of a mountain or ridge to expose and mine one or more coal seams. Excess overburden is disposed in constructed fills in small valleys adjacent to the mining site. MTM-VF leachate persistently increases the downstream concentrations of major ions. Conductivity is a coarse measure of these ions, which are dominated by a distinct mixture of SO(4)(2-), HCO(3)(-), Ca(2+) and Mg(2+), that reflects their source, the oxidation of pyrite to form acid followed by neutralization of the acidity by carbonate minerals within the valley fills. This results in neutral to alkaline pHs, a range at which many metals are relatively insoluble. Other compounds within coal or overburden are solubilized and occur at elevated albeit lower concentrations, including K(+), Na(+), Cl(-), Se and Mn. In terms of physical characteristics, the valley fills act like headwater aquifers, baseflows increase in streams below valley fills and water temperatures exhibit reduced seasonal variation. Peak discharges may be increased in response to intense precipitation events, because of compaction of base surfaces of the MTM-VF areas, but newer approaches to reclamation reduce this compaction and may ameliorate these peak flows. Although the sedimentation pond is intended to capture fine particles that wash downstream from the valley fill, some studies found increased fine sediments in streams downstream from valley fills. However, a proportion of these fines may be eroded from stream banks rather than the valley fills. This is probably a result of the alterations in stream flows. PMID:22264919

  16. Fluvial response to late Quaternary climatic fluctuations, central Kobuk Valley, northwestern Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Ashley, G.M. . Dept. of Geological Sciences); Hamilton, T.D. )

    1993-09-01

    Much of northwestern Alaska remained unglaciated during the Pleistocene and thus offers a favorable setting for examining long-term records of high-latitude geological and biological change. Epiguruk, a large cut bank 3.5 km long and up to 36 m high on the Kobuk River south of the Brooks Range in eastern Beringia, exposes complex sedimentary successions representing cycles of upper quaternary alluviation and eolian sedimentation, downcutting, and soil formation. A rich record of plants and mammals is also preserved in the section. Deposits of fluvial channels and flood plains, eolian dunes, sand sheets, loess, and ponds, as well as organic soils (Histosols) are represented. Parallel-bedded fine sand and coarse silt couplets that commonly contain root structures, ripple cross-lamination, silt drapes are flood-plain sediments apparently deposited at the interface of fluvial and eolian environments. Multiple fluvial-to-eolian depositional sequences were caused by influx of eolian sediment to the river from intermittently active dune fields south of the Kobuk River. Alluviation in the Kobuk Valley was coeval with glaciation in the Brooks Range, whereas downcutting occurred during interstadials when dune stabilization limited sediment supply. The depositional model developed at Epiguruk may be useful in interpreting some of the widespread subhorizontally stratified late-glacial deposits of Europe and North America.

  17. Geophysical studies of large blind thrust, Valley and Ridge province, central Appalachians

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson, T.H.

    1989-03-01

    Possible thrust-sheet geometries in the unexposed Cambrian-Ordovician lithotectonic unit in the Nittany anticlinorium of the Valley and Ridge province in West Virginia are defined through analysis of geophysical data. Calculated gravity for different subsurface interpretations is compared with observed gravity. Comparisons of model calculations to terrain-corrected Bouguer gravity indicate that a large blind thrust of the Cambrian-Ordovician lithotectonic unit, extending across the entire width of the anticlinorium, is an acceptable subsurface interpretation. A seismic line across the anticlinorium is also presented. The seismic line reveals that a large part of the area is underlain by a double thickness of the Cambrian-Ordovician lithotectonic unit. Data can be interpreted many ways. However, the gravity data require that an acceptable model have only minor lateral density contrasts across the anticlinorium so that effectively, a double thickness of the Cambrian Ordovician lithotectonic unit exists across it. Both the gravity and seismic data indicate that the presence of separate horses beneath the major Silurian-Devonian structures exposed at the surface is unlikely. 12 figures.

  18. Groundwater discharge by evapotranspiration, Dixie Valley, west-central Nevada, March 2009-September 2011

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Garcia, C. Amanda; Huntington, Jena M; Buto, Susan G.; Moreo, Michael T.; Smith, J. LaRue; Andraski, Brian J.

    2014-01-01

    Mean annual basin-scale ETg totaled about 28 million cubic meters (Mm3) (23,000 acre-feet [acre-ft]), and represents the sum of ETg from all ET units. Annual groundwater ET from vegetated areas totaled about 26 Mm3 (21,000 acre-ft), and was dominated by the moderate-to-dense shrubland ET unit (54 percent), followed by sparse shrubland (37 percent) and grassland (9 percent) ET units. Senesced grasses observed in the northern most areas of the moderate-to-dense ET unit likely confounded the vegetation index and led to an overestimate of ETg for this ET unit. Therefore, mean annual ETg for moderate-to-dense shrubland presented here is likely an upper bound. Annual groundwater ET from the playa ET unit was 2.2 Mm3 (1,800 acre-ft), whereas groundwater ET from the playa lake ET unit was 0–0.1 Mm3 (0–100 acre-ft). Oxygen-18 and deuterium data indicate discharge from the playa center predominantly represents removal of local precipitation-derived recharge. The playa lake estimate, therefore, is considered an upper bound. Mean annual ETg estimates for Dixie Valley are assumed to represent the pre‑development, long-term ETg rates within the study area.

  19. Socioeconomic effects of power marketing alternatives for the Central Valley and Washoe Projects: 2005 regional econmic impact analysis using IMPLAN

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, D.M.; Godoy-Kain, P.; Gu, A.Y.; Ulibarri, C.A.

    1996-11-01

    The Western Area Power Administration (Western) was founded by the Department of Energy Organization Act of 1977 to market and transmit federal hydroelectric power in 15 western states outside the Pacific Northwest, which is served by the Bonneville Power Administration. Western is divided into four independent Customer Service Regions including the Sierra Nevada Region (Sierra Nevada), the focus of this report. The Central Valley Project (CVP) and the Washoe Project provide the primary power resources marketed by Sierra Nevada. Sierra Nevada also purchases and markets power generated by the Bonneville Power Administration, Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), and various power pools. Sierra Nevada currently markets approximately 1,480 megawatts of power to 77 customers in northern and central California. These customers include investor-owned utilities, public utilities, government agencies, military bases, and irrigation districts. Methods and conclusions from an economic analysis are summarized concerning distributional effects of alternative actions that Sierra Nevada could take with it`s new marketing plan.

  20. The cultural and chronological context of early Holocene maize and squash domestication in the Central Balsas River Valley, Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Ranere, Anthony J.; Piperno, Dolores R.; Holst, Irene; Dickau, Ruth; Iriarte, José

    2009-01-01

    Molecular evidence indicates that the wild ancestor of maize is presently native to the seasonally dry tropical forest of the Central Balsas watershed in southwestern Mexico. We report here on archaeological investigations in a region of the Central Balsas located near the Iguala Valley in Guerrero state that show for the first time a long sequence of human occupation and plant exploitation reaching back to the early Holocene. One of the sites excavated, the Xihuatoxtla Shelter, contains well-stratified deposits and a stone tool assemblage of bifacially flaked points, simple flake tools, and numerous handstones and milling stone bases radiocarbon dated to at least 8700 calendrical years B.P. As reported in a companion paper (Piperno DR, et al., in this issue of PNAS), starch grain and phytolith residues from the ground and chipped stone tools, plus phytoliths from directly associated sediments, provide evidence for maize (Zea mays L.) and domesticated squash (Cucurbita spp.) in contexts contemporaneous with and stratigraphically below the 8700 calendrical years B.P. date. The radiocarbon determinations, stratigraphic integrity of Xihuatoxtla's deposits, and characteristics of the stone tool assemblages associated with the maize and squash remains all indicate that these plants were early Holocene domesticates. Early agriculture in this region of Mexico appears to have involved small groups of cultivators who were shifting their settlements seasonally and engaging in a variety of subsistence pursuits. PMID:19307573

  1. Thermal and barometric constraints on the intrusive and unroofing history of the Black Mountains: Implications for timing, initial dip, and kinematics of detachment faulting in the Death Valley Region, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holm, Daniel K.; Snow, J. Kent; Lux, Daniel R.

    1992-06-01

    Unroofing of the Black Mountains, Death Valley, California, has resulted in the exposure of 1.7 Ga crystalline basement, late Precambrian amphibolite facies metasedimentary rocks, and a Tertiary magmatic complex. The 40Ar/39Ar cooling ages, obtained from samples collected across the entire length of the range (>55 km), combined with geobarometric results from synextensional intrusions, provide time-depth constraints on the Miocene intrusive history and extensional unroofing of the Black Mountains. Data from the southeastern Black Mountains and adjacent Greenwater Range suggest unroofing from shallow depths between 9 and 10 Ma. To the northwest in the crystalline core of the range, biotite plateau ages from ˜13 to 6.8 Ma from rocks making up the Death Valley turtlebacks indicate a midcrustal residence (with temperatures >300°C) prior to extensional unroofing. Biotite 40Ar/39Ar ages from both Precambrian basement and Tertiary plutons reveal a diachronous cooling pattern of decreasing ages toward the northwest, subparallel to the regional extension direction. Diachronous cooling was accompanied by dike intrusion which also decreases in age toward the northwest. The cooling age pattern and geobarometric constraints in crystalline rocks of the Black Mountains suggest denudation of 10-15 km along a northwest directed detachment system, consistent with regional reconstructions of Tertiary extension and with unroofing of a northwest deepening crustal section. Mica cooling ages that deviate from the northwest younging trend are consistent with northwestward transport of rocks initially at shallower crustal levels onto deeper levels along splays of the detachment. The well-known Amargosa chaos and perhaps the Badwater turtleback are examples of this "splaying" process. Considering the current distance of the structurally deepest samples away from moderately to steeply east tilted Tertiary strata in the southeastern Black Mountains, these data indicate an average initial dip of the detachment system of the order of 20°, similar to that determined for detachment faults in west central Arizona and southeastern California. Beginning with an initially listric geometry, a pattern of footwall unroofing accompanied by dike intrusion progresses northwestward. This pattern may be explained by a model where migration of footwall flexures occur below a scoop-shaped hanging wall block. One consequence of this model is that gently dipping ductile fabrics developed in the middle crust steepen in the upper crust during unloading. This process resolves the low initial dips obtained here with mapping which suggests transport of the upper plate on moderately to steeply dipping surfaces in the middle and upper crust.

  2. Geomorphic process and vegetation diversity in the active riverbed and the floodplain in the Kamikochi valley, central Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shimazu, H.

    2012-04-01

    The Kamikochi valley is located in a mountainous area in central Japan. The R. Azusa in this valley is a braided river with floodplains. Dense riparian forests cover the floodplains and fragmented small pioneer plant patches and isolated old pioneer trees are distributed in the active riverbed. This study aims to discuss the relationships between geomorphic processes of the river and vegetation diversity. Yearly mapping of the riverbed micro-landforms revealed that channel migrations and landform changes in the active riverbed occurs once every one or several years during a bankfull flood in the rainy season. Germination ages of riparian trees using a dendrochronological technique, their established layers and landform structure were examined to reconstruct floodplain dynamics. Major channel migrations destroyed the riparian forest repeatedly and the recent event occurred about 100 years ago. This caused a longitudinal zonal structure of the riparian forest vegetation, elm-fir forest, mature pioneer forest and young pioneer forests. The young pioneer forest is located alongside the present riverbed. The mature pioneer forest lies between the older elm-fir forests. The pioneer plants germinated simultaneously on the abandoned channel after channel migration. These trees became the mature pioneer forest. Ditches and lobes including boulders are found in the floodplain. The ditches extend parallel to the direction of the present and former channels. The lobes are distributed alongside them. Younger trees under the canopy grow on the lobes in the inner part of the floodplain. These young trees and lobes show that dominant sedimentation process in the floodplain is not lateral flooding, but longitudinal flooding. Sediments from the present channel flew downward through the ditches and were overflowed on the floodplain. This process destroyed the vegetation in and alongside the ditches causing vegetation diversity in the inner part of the riparian forest. Several species of willows such as Salix arbutifolia occur in the patches and as isolated trees in the active riverbed. The braided channel migration in the active riverbed causes destruction and/or size reduction of the pioneer patches. After that willows germinated again in bars and/or island in the active riverbed. If a little seedling willow patch remains not to be destroyed for several years, it becomes a grown pioneer patch, finally old isolated trees. Therefore the patches in various age and size classes are found in the active riverbed. These destructions and re-establishments of vegetation caused by the geomorphic processes create the vegetation diversity in the active riverbed and the floodplain in the Kamikochi valley.

  3. Long-term impacts on macroinvertebrates downstream of reclaimed mountaintop mining valley fills in Central Appalachia.

    PubMed

    Pond, Gregory J; Passmore, Margaret E; Pointon, Nancy D; Felbinger, John K; Walker, Craig A; Krock, Kelly J G; Fulton, Jennifer B; Nash, Whitney L

    2014-10-01

    Recent studies have documented adverse effects to biological communities downstream of mountaintop coal mining and valley fills (VF), but few data exist on the longevity of these impacts. We sampled 15 headwater streams with VFs reclaimed 11-33 years prior to 2011 and sampled seven local reference sites that had no VFs. We collected chemical, habitat, and benthic macroinvertebrate data in April 2011; additional chemical samples were collected in September 2011. To assess ecological condition, we compared VF and reference abiotic and biotic data using: (1) ordination to detect multivariate differences, (2) benthic indices (a multimetric index and an observed/expected predictive model) calibrated to state reference conditions to detect impairment, and (3) correlation and regression analysis to detect relationships between biotic and abiotic data. Although VF sites had good instream habitat, nearly 90 % of these streams exhibited biological impairment. VF sites with higher index scores were co-located near unaffected tributaries; we suggest that these tributaries were sources of sensitive taxa as drifting colonists. There were clear losses of expected taxa across most VF sites and two functional feeding groups (% scrapers and %shredders) were significantly altered. Percent VF and forested area were related to biological quality but varied more than individual ions and specific conductance. Within the subset of VF sites, other descriptors (e.g., VF age, site distance from VF, the presence of impoundments, % forest) had no detectable relationships with biological condition. Although these VFs were constructed pursuant to permits and regulatory programs that have as their stated goals that (1) mined land be reclaimed and restored to its original use or a use of higher value, and (2) mining does not cause or contribute to violations of water quality standards, we found sustained ecological damage in headwaters streams draining VFs long after reclamation was completed. PMID:24990807

  4. Long-Term Impacts on Macroinvertebrates Downstream of Reclaimed Mountaintop Mining Valley Fills in Central Appalachia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pond, Gregory J.; Passmore, Margaret E.; Pointon, Nancy D.; Felbinger, John K.; Walker, Craig A.; Krock, Kelly J. G.; Fulton, Jennifer B.; Nash, Whitney L.

    2014-10-01

    Recent studies have documented adverse effects to biological communities downstream of mountaintop coal mining and valley fills (VF), but few data exist on the longevity of these impacts. We sampled 15 headwater streams with VFs reclaimed 11-33 years prior to 2011 and sampled seven local reference sites that had no VFs. We collected chemical, habitat, and benthic macroinvertebrate data in April 2011; additional chemical samples were collected in September 2011. To assess ecological condition, we compared VF and reference abiotic and biotic data using: (1) ordination to detect multivariate differences, (2) benthic indices (a multimetric index and an observed/expected predictive model) calibrated to state reference conditions to detect impairment, and (3) correlation and regression analysis to detect relationships between biotic and abiotic data. Although VF sites had good instream habitat, nearly 90 % of these streams exhibited biological impairment. VF sites with higher index scores were co-located near unaffected tributaries; we suggest that these tributaries were sources of sensitive taxa as drifting colonists. There were clear losses of expected taxa across most VF sites and two functional feeding groups (% scrapers and %shredders) were significantly altered. Percent VF and forested area were related to biological quality but varied more than individual ions and specific conductance. Within the subset of VF sites, other descriptors (e.g., VF age, site distance from VF, the presence of impoundments, % forest) had no detectable relationships with biological condition. Although these VFs were constructed pursuant to permits and regulatory programs that have as their stated goals that (1) mined land be reclaimed and restored to its original use or a use of higher value, and (2) mining does not cause or contribute to violations of water quality standards, we found sustained ecological damage in headwaters streams draining VFs long after reclamation was completed.

  5. Mammal Inventory of the Mojave Network Parks-Death Valley and Joshua Tree National Parks, Lake Mead National Recreation Area, Manzanar National Historic Site, and Mojave National Preserve

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Drost, Charles A.; Hart, Jan

    2008-01-01

    This report describes the results of a mammal inventory study of National Park Service units in the Mojave Desert Network, including Death Valley National Park, Joshua Tree National Park, Lake Mead National Recr