TY - JOUR

T1 - GOCE quick-look gravity solution

T2 - Application of the semianalytic approach in the case of data gaps and non-repeat orbits

AU - Preimesberger, T.

AU - Pail, R.

PY - 2003

Y1 - 2003

N2 - The satellite mission GOCE (Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer), the first Core Mission of the Earth Explorer Programme funded by ESA (European Space Agency), is dedicated to the precise modelling of the Earth's gravity field, with its launch planned for 2006. The mathematical models for parameterizing the Earth's gravity field are based on a series expansion into spherical harmonics, yielding a huge number of unknown coefficients. Their computation leads to the solution of very large normal equation systems. An efficient way to handle these equation systems is the so-called semianalytic or lumped coefficients approach, which theoretically requires an uninterrupted, continuous time series of observations, recorded along an exact circular repeat orbit. In this paper the consequences of violating these conditions are analyzed. The effects of an interrupted observation stream onto the estimated spherical harmonic coefficients are demonstrated, and an iterative strategy, which reduces the negative influence depending on the characteristics of the data gaps, is proposed. Additionally, the impact of an imperfectly closing orbit (non-repeat orbit) on the gravity field model is analyzed, and a strategy to minimize the corresponding errors is presented. The applicability of the semianalytic approach also to a joint inversion of satellite-to-satellite tracking data in high-low mode (hl-SST) and satellite gravity gradiometry (SGG) observations is demonstrated, where the analysis of the former component is based on the energy conservation law. Several realistic case studies prove that the semianalytic approach is a feasible tool to generate quick-look gravity solutions, i.e. fast coefficient estimates using only partial data sets. This quick-look analysis shall be able to detect potential distortions of statistical significance (e.g. systematic errors) in the input data, and to give a fast feedback to the GOCE mission control.

AB - The satellite mission GOCE (Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer), the first Core Mission of the Earth Explorer Programme funded by ESA (European Space Agency), is dedicated to the precise modelling of the Earth's gravity field, with its launch planned for 2006. The mathematical models for parameterizing the Earth's gravity field are based on a series expansion into spherical harmonics, yielding a huge number of unknown coefficients. Their computation leads to the solution of very large normal equation systems. An efficient way to handle these equation systems is the so-called semianalytic or lumped coefficients approach, which theoretically requires an uninterrupted, continuous time series of observations, recorded along an exact circular repeat orbit. In this paper the consequences of violating these conditions are analyzed. The effects of an interrupted observation stream onto the estimated spherical harmonic coefficients are demonstrated, and an iterative strategy, which reduces the negative influence depending on the characteristics of the data gaps, is proposed. Additionally, the impact of an imperfectly closing orbit (non-repeat orbit) on the gravity field model is analyzed, and a strategy to minimize the corresponding errors is presented. The applicability of the semianalytic approach also to a joint inversion of satellite-to-satellite tracking data in high-low mode (hl-SST) and satellite gravity gradiometry (SGG) observations is demonstrated, where the analysis of the former component is based on the energy conservation law. Several realistic case studies prove that the semianalytic approach is a feasible tool to generate quick-look gravity solutions, i.e. fast coefficient estimates using only partial data sets. This quick-look analysis shall be able to detect potential distortions of statistical significance (e.g. systematic errors) in the input data, and to give a fast feedback to the GOCE mission control.

KW - Field analysis

KW - GOCE

KW - Quick-look gravity

KW - Semianalytic approach

KW - Spherical harmonics

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0042287968&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1023/A:1024795030800

DO - 10.1023/A:1024795030800

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:0042287968

SN - 0039-3169

VL - 47

SP - 435

EP - 453

JO - Studia Geophysica et Geodaetica

JF - Studia Geophysica et Geodaetica

IS - 3

ER -