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Geosciences 2018, 8(9), 315;

Impact of Groundtrack Pattern of a Single Pair Mission on the Gravity Recovery Quality

Faculty of Civil Engineering and Transportation, University of Isfahan, Isfahan 81746-73441, Iran
Institute of Geodesy, University of Hanover, Schneiderberg 50, 30167 Hannover, Germany
Institute of Geodesy, University of Stuttgart, Geschwister-Scholl-Str. 24D, 70174 Stuttgart, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 July 2018 / Revised: 14 August 2018 / Accepted: 18 August 2018 / Published: 23 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gravity Field Determination and Its Temporal Variation)


For future gravity satellite missions, aliasing of high frequency geophysical signals into the lower frequencies is one of the most challenging obstacles to recovering true gravity signals, i.e., to recover the truth. Several studies have investigated the impact of satellite groundtrack pattern on the quality of gravity recovery. Among those works, the concept of sub-cycle has been discussed as well. However, most of that research has focused on the impact of sampling patterns on global solutions up to a fixed maximum spherical harmonic coefficient, rather than the associated coefficient defined by the Colombo-Nyquist and modified Colombo-Nyquist rules. This work tries to look more closely into the influence of sampling patterns on the gravity recovery quality for global and regional studies when the Colombo-Nyquist and modified Colombo-Nyquist rules apply. For the regional study, the impact of groundtrack patterns of different satellite constellation scenarios are investigated for a hydrological basin in central Africa. The quality of the gravity products are assessed by different metrics, e.g., by spatial covariance representation. The potential meaning of the sub-cycle concept in terms of global and local impacts is also investigated by different repeat-orbit scenarios with even and odd parities. Different solution scenarios in terms of the original and modified Colombo-Nyquist rules will be discussed. The results of our study emphasize the impact of maximum harmonics of the recovery, the influence of sub-cycle on the local gravity recovery and the mission formation impact on the recovery error. View Full-Text
Keywords: gravity field recovery; sampling; groundtrack gravity field recovery; sampling; groundtrack

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Iran-Pour, S.; Weigelt, M.; Amiri-Simkooei, A.; Sneeuw, N. Impact of Groundtrack Pattern of a Single Pair Mission on the Gravity Recovery Quality. Geosciences 2018, 8, 315.

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