Gravity field models derived from the second degree radial derivatives of the GOCE mission: a case study

Alexander N. Marchenko, Dmitriy A. Marchenko, Alexander N. Lopushansky


The GOCE satellite mission is one of the main achievements of the satellite geodesy for the Earth’s gravitational field recovery. Three different approaches have been developed for the estimation of harmonic coefficients from gradiometry data measured on board of GOCE-satellite. In this paper a special version of the space-wise method based on the second method of Neumann for fast determination of the harmonic coefficients Cnm, Snm of the Earth’s gravitational potential is given based on the radial gravity gradients of the EGG_TRF_2 product, except of two polar gaps filled by radial gradients from the EGM2008 gravity model. In the pre-processing stage GOCE-based second degree radial derivatives were averaged to the regular grid through Kalman static filter with additional Gaussean smoothing of residual radial derivatives. All computations are made by iterations. As the first step the determination of the preliminary NULP-01S model up to degree/order 220 derived from the Gaussean grid of the GOCE radial derivatives with respect to the WGS-84 reference field was developed based only one of the radial gradients EGG_TRF_2 in the EFRF-frame. In the second iteration the same algorithm is applied to build the NULP-02S gravity field model up to degree/order 250 using the same Gaussean grid with respect to the NULP-01S reference field. The NULP-02S model was verified by means of applying various approaches for the construction of the gridded gravity anomalies and geoid heights in the Black sea area using processing of datasets from six altimetry satellite missions. Comparison of different models with GNSS-levelling data in the USA area demonstrates the independent verification of achieved accuracy of the constructed NULP-02S Earth’s gravity field model.


Harmonic coefficients from GOCE gradiometry; Gauss quadrature; Kalman filter

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Published by INGV, Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - ISSN: 2037-416X