Science: Exploring an Ominous Bulge

Scientists study puzzling earth movements in California

Nearly 300 scientists this week are beginning one of the most extraordinary surveys in the annals of U.S. geology. Under a $1.4 million program conducted jointly by the National Geodetic Survey, the U.S. Geological Survey and local authorities, 36 teams of specialists are fanning across Southern California with levels, gravity meters and other exotic scientific gear for three months of intensive measuring. Their mission: to study the gradual—and extremely puzzling—elevation of a large region centered around the small town of Palmdale (pop. 12,800) that has taken...

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