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GOCE Data Product Verification in the Mediterranean Sea

Dr Juan Jose Martinez-Benjamin(1), Dr Alexander Braun(2) , Mr Shin-Chan Han(2) , Dr C.K. Shum(2) , and Dr Yuchan Yi(2)

(1) Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, Gran Capitan s/n, 08034 Barcelona, Spain
(2) Ohio State University, 2070 Neil Av., 43210 Columbus, Ohio, United States


ESA's General Ocean Circulation Experiment (GOCE) mission is anticipated to generate Level 2 data products such as global geopotential model with geoid undulation accuracy of 1 cm rms and a spatial resolution of 160 km or longer. We propose a calibration and validation effort to verify GOCE measurements and data products including the Level 2 geopotential model in the Mediterranean Sea, a water body of 4000 km by 1000 km area. Multiple altimetric determined mean sea surface model after removal of thermal effects will be usedas one of the measurement types to construct an in situ geoid undulation model for validing GOCE geopotential. Additional measurements required are XBT data, sea surface temperature and/or dynamic topography model computed using e.g., NODC 2001 data compiled by S. Levitus. These measurements will be used to compute steric (thermosteric and halosteric) components of the sea level which will be appropriately removed from altimetric/GPS mean sea surface to construction a geoid model in the Mediterranean. Appropriate upward (and downward) continuations of the Mediterranean geoid to the GOCE altitude to compare with GOCE measurements directly, in addition to comparing with the GOCE geopotential model with the appropriate resolution. This paper provides a description of the methodology and example applications using CHAMP and GRACE data products.


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Keywords: ESA European Space Agency - Agence spatiale europeenne, observation de la terre, earth observation, satellite remote sensing, teledetection, geophysique, altimetrie, radar, chimique atmospherique, geophysics, altimetry, radar, atmospheric chemistry