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Comparing GRACE-FO KBR and LRI Ranging Data with Focus on Carrier Frequency Variations

Müller, Vitali and Hauk, Markus and Misfeldt, Malte and Müller, Laura and Wegener, Henry and Yan, Yihao and Heinzel, Gerhard (2022) Comparing GRACE-FO KBR and LRI Ranging Data with Focus on Carrier Frequency Variations. Remote Sensing, 14 (17). Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI). doi: 10.3390/rs14174335. ISSN 2072-4292.

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Official URL: https://www.mdpi.com/2072-4292/14/17/4335


The GRACE Follow-On satellite mission measures distance variations between its two satellites in order to derive monthly gravity field maps, indicating mass variability on Earth on a scale of a few 100 km originating from hydrology, seismology, climatology and other sources. This mission hosts two ranging instruments, a conventional microwave system based on K(a)-band ranging (KBR) and a novel laser ranging instrument (LRI), both relying on interferometric phase readout. In this paper, we show how the phase measurements can be converted into range data using a time-dependent carrier frequency (or wavelength) that takes into account potential intraday variability in the microwave or laser frequency. Moreover, we analyze the KBR-LRI residuals and discuss which error and noise contributors limit the residuals at high and low Fourier frequencies. It turns out that the agreement between KBR and LRI biased range observations can be slightly improved by considering intraday carrier frequency variations in the processing. Although the effect is probably small enough to have little relevance for gravity field determination at the current precision level, this analysis is of relevance for detailed instrument characterization and potentially for future more precise missions.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/188926/
Document Type:Article
Title:Comparing GRACE-FO KBR and LRI Ranging Data with Focus on Carrier Frequency Variations
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Müller, VitaliMax-Planck-Institut für Gravitationsphysik, HannoverUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Hauk, MarkusDLR Institut für Satellitengeodäsie und InertialsensorikUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Misfeldt, MalteMax-Planck-Institut für Gravitationsphysik, HannoverUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Müller, LauraMax-Planck-Institut für Gravitationsphysik, HannoverUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Wegener, HenryMax-Planck-Institut für Gravitationsphysik, HannoverUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Yan, YihaoMax-Planck-Institut für Gravitationsphysik, HannoverUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Heinzel, GerhardMax-Planck-Institut für Gravitationsphysik, HannoverUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date:1 September 2022
Journal or Publication Title:Remote Sensing
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Publisher:Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI)
Keywords:GRACE Follow-On; instrumentation; laser ranging; microwave ranging
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Communication, Navigation, Quantum Technology
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R KNQ - Communication, Navigation, Quantum Technology
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Data analysis, instrument characterization GRACE-FO
Location: Hannover
Institutes and Institutions:Institute for Satellite Geodesy and Inertial Sensing > Quantum Optical Sensing
Deposited By: Koch, Alexander
Deposited On:13 Oct 2022 11:01
Last Modified:13 Oct 2022 11:01

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