Satellite Gravity Gradiometry with GOCE
During the past years the European Space Agency (ESA) has worked on the definition of a comprehensive Earth observation satellite programme for the era after ENVISAT. This “ESA Living Planet” (1998) programme has recently been published. It distinguishes three types of missions: the research oriented medium scale explorer missions, the smaller opportunity missions, and the monitoring type Earth watch missions. In preparation of a pre-selection of the first explorer missions a meeting of the European Earth science community had been organized at Granada/Spain in May 1996. The Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE) was one of nine candidates that were presented there. Following a recommendation of the Earth Science Advisory Committee of ESA four of the nine were selected for a phase-A study. They were: the gravity field and steady-state ocean circulation mission, an atmospheric dynamics mission, an Earth radiation experiment, and a land surface processes and interaction mission.
KeywordsGlobal Position System Gravity Anomaly European Space Agency Spherical Harmonic Degree Gravitational Gradient
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