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Sensors 2016, 16(4), 565;

A Comparative Study of the Applied Methods for Estimating Deflection of the Vertical in Terrestrial Geodetic Measurements

DICAM—University of Bologna, Viale Risorgimento 2, Bologna 40136, Italy
Istituto di Radioastronomia (IRA)—Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica (INAF) Via P. Gobetti, 101 Bologna 40129, Italy
ETH Zurich—Institute of Geodesy and Photogrammetry, Stefano-Franscini-Platz 5, Zurich 8093, Switzerland
University eCampus, via Isimbardi 10, Novedrate, CO 22060, Italy
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Jason K. Levy
Received: 23 February 2016 / Revised: 13 April 2016 / Accepted: 15 April 2016 / Published: 20 April 2016
(This article belongs to the Section Remote Sensors)
Full-Text   |   PDF [3754 KB, uploaded 20 April 2016]   |  


This paper compares three different methods capable of estimating the deflection of the vertical (DoV): one is based on the joint use of high precision spirit leveling and Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS), a second uses astro-geodetic measurements and the third gravimetric geoid models. The working data sets refer to the geodetic International Terrestrial Reference Frame (ITRF) co-location sites of Medicina (Northern, Italy) and Noto (Sicily), these latter being excellent test beds for our investigations. The measurements were planned and realized to estimate the DoV with a level of precision comparable to the angular accuracy achievable in high precision network measured by modern high-end total stations. The three methods are in excellent agreement, with an operational supremacy of the astro-geodetic method, being faster and more precise than the others. The method that combines leveling and GNSS has slightly larger standard deviations; although well within the 1 arcsec level, which was assumed as threshold. Finally, the geoid model based method, whose 2.5 arcsec standard deviations exceed this threshold, is also statistically consistent with the others and should be used to determine the DoV components where local ad hoc measurements are lacking. View Full-Text
Keywords: deflection of the vertical; tie vectors; ITRF; QDaedalus; ITALGEO2005 deflection of the vertical; tie vectors; ITRF; QDaedalus; ITALGEO2005

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Vittuari, L.; Tini, M.A.; Sarti, P.; Serantoni, E.; Borghi, A.; Negusini, M.; Guillaume, S. A Comparative Study of the Applied Methods for Estimating Deflection of the Vertical in Terrestrial Geodetic Measurements. Sensors 2016, 16, 565.

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