Improving GOCE cross-track gravity gradients

Christian Siemes*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


The GOCE gravity gradiometer measured highly accurate gravity gradients along the orbit during GOCE’s mission lifetime from March 17, 2009, to November 11, 2013. These measurements contain unique information on the gravity field at a spatial resolution of 80 km half wavelength, which is not provided to the same accuracy level by any other satellite mission now and in the foreseeable future. Unfortunately, the gravity gradient in cross-track direction is heavily perturbed in the regions around the geomagnetic poles. We show in this paper that the perturbing effect can be modeled accurately as a quadratic function of the non-gravitational acceleration of the satellite in cross-track direction. Most importantly, we can remove the perturbation from the cross-track gravity gradient to a great extent, which significantly improves the accuracy of the latter and offers opportunities for better scientific exploitation of the GOCE gravity gradient data set.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-45
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Geodesy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Accelerometry
  • Calibration
  • GOCE mission
  • Satellite gravity gradiometry


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