Evaluation of Land Subsidence and Ground Failures at Bicycle Basin, Fort Irwin National Training Center, California, 1992-2017 [open pdf - 20MB]
From the Abstract: "Groundwater has been pumped in the Bicycle Basin at Fort Irwin National Training Center since the 1960s, and the amount pumped has generally increased since the 1990s. After a large crack (approximately 0.5-kilometer long) formed at the surface of Bicycle Lake playa during 2005-06 in the area used as an aircraft runway, a monitoring study was initiated by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Army Fort Irwin National Training Center, to help determine the cause. The extent and effect of groundwater level declines and land-surface deformation in Bicycle Basin were evaluated using a number of approaches, including water-level measurements from December 2007 to June 2017, land surveys across the playa area, interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) analyses, geophysical surveys of the playa area, and numerical experiments to test hypotheses about soil mechanical processes. A specific objective of this study was to evaluate the recent development of ground failures in the form of large, surface cracks that pose a hazard to aircraft operations on the Bicycle Lake playa airstrip."
Scientific Investigations Report 2019-5015
U.S. Geological Survey: https://www.usgs.gov/