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Highlands College Project Goes National


Last year, Montana Tech’s Civil Engineering Technology students and faculty successfully completed a project to establish a Continuously Operating Reference Station (CORS) at Highlands College. After monitoring the reference station for a few months, the National Geodetic Survey [NGS], an agency of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [NOAA], recently accepted the Highlands College CORS station into their national network and is now officially "hosted" on their website under the site ID "MTHC".

"Our Highlands College CORS station will provide valuable information to professionals across our region," said Eric Martin, Highlands College Civil Engineering Technology Instructor. "But equally as important is the invaluable student learning which is now made possible by this sophisticated technology."

The Highlands College CORS is now part of a nationwide network of stations that provide Global Navigation Satellite System data to support three-dimensional positioning, meteorology, space, weather, and geophysical applications. Because so many people rely on the data recorded and transmitted by the CORS, the establishment of the station at Highlands College had to meet very strict national requirements. As a result of the strict verification monitoring over the past few months, the NGS has reported to Highlands College that Butte is drifting south 8.6 mm per year and west 1.4 mm per year.

"I sense that most members of the public probably have never heard of a CORS station," said Dr. John M. Garic, Dean of Highlands College. "I want the public to know that this state-of-the-art technology is helping move our students, our economy and our state into a more successful future."

The NGS website is located at

For any further information about this issue or any issue pertaining to Montana Tech, please contact Dr. John M. Garic at 406-496-3714 or Amanda Badovinac at 406-496-4828.

www.ngs.noaa.gov/CORS/GoogleMap/CORS.shtml. By entering the site ID "MTHC", users and interested parties can see the site location and the information provided by the NGS.