Data requirements for a 5-mm quasi-geoid in the Netherlands

Hassan H. Farahani*, Roland Klees, Cornelis Slobbe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)
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We assess the surface gravity data requirements for a 5-mm quasi-geoid model for the Netherlands mainland and continental shelf in terms of omission and commission errors. The omission error critically depends on the roughness of the topography and bathymetry. For the Netherlands continental shelf, Central and Northern Netherlands, the omission error is well described by the model 0.32d mm, where d is the data spacing in km. For the more hilly Southern Netherlands, the omission error model is 0.92d mm. The commission error depends on the kernel modification, the data spacing, and the data accuracy. When using the spheroidal Stokes kernel, it is well described by 0.277 d σΔg mm, where σΔg is the noise standard deviation of surface gravity data in mGal. An upper bound of the commission error of the state-of-the-art satellite-only gravity model GOCO05S over the Netherlands is e0.03676L–11.419 mm, where L is the maximum degree up to which this model is used. Only if this model is truncated at a sufficiently low degree, e.g., at degree 100, its contribution to the total commission error can be neglected. We determine the total error as the sum of commission and omission errors. Hence, to realize a 5-mm quasi-geoid model for the Netherlands mainland and continental shelf, a data spacing of 3.5 km is needed when assuming a noise standard deviation of 1.5 mGal for surface gravity data. The currently available land-based gravity data fulfill this requirement. This does not apply to the situation at sea, where the density of the shipboard gravity data and the accuracy of the radar altimeter-derived data do not allow the realization of a 5-mm quasi-geoid model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)675–702
Number of pages28
JournalStudia Geophysica et Geodaetica: a journal of geophysics, geodesy, meteorology and climatology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 19 Apr 2017


  • commission error
  • omission error
  • quasi-geoid


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