Geophysical interpretation of GPS loading deformation over western Europe using GRACE measurements

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Songyun Wang
Jianli Chen
Jin Li
Xiaogong Hu
Shengnan Ni


We analyze more than 10 years of Global Positioning System (GPS) height residuals and vertical displacements predicted from surface mass loading observed by the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) for 36 International GNSS Service (IGS) stations over Europe. Seasonal surface displacements, mostly due to atmospheric and hydrological loading, are significant in both GPS and GRACE measurements. With an extended time period, our new analysis based on release 05 GRACE data from Center for Space Research (CSR) shows considerably improved agreement between GPS and GRACE than that from previous studies, for not only annual but also interannual signals. The GPS height residual series at most stations exhibit reduced weighted root-mean-squares (WRMS) after removing GRACE-derived vertical displacements, which is attributed to improved accuracy of both GPS and GRACE data products. Furthermore, we demonstrate the necessity of reducing leakage bias in GRACE estimates for the study of surface loading deformation using GRACE satellite gravity observations.

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Wang, S., Chen, J., Li, J., Hu, X. and Ni, S. (2016) “Geophysical interpretation of GPS loading deformation over western Europe using GRACE measurements”, Annals of Geophysics, 59(5), p. S0538. doi: 10.4401/ag-7058.

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