TND-IGG RL01: Thermospheric neutral density from accelerometer measurements of GRACE, CHAMP and Swarm

  • Anno Löcher (Contributor)
  • Armin Corbin (Contributor)
  • Ehsan Forootan (Contributor)
  • Jürgen Kusche (Contributor)
  • Kristin Vielberg (Contributor)
  • Christina Lück (Contributor)



TND-IGG RL01: This dataset is the first release of thermospheric neutral densities (TND) processed at the Institute of Geodesy and Geoinformation (IGG), University of Bonn, Germany. TNDs are derived from accelerometer measurements of the satellites GRACE-A, CHAMP and Swarm-C. For GRACE-A and CHAMP we first calibrate the accelerometer data within a precise orbit determination procedure (Vielberg et al., 2018). For Swarm-C we use the calibrated along-track accelerations from ESA (Siemes et al., 2016). In a second step, solar and Earth radiation pressure accelerations according to Vielberg and Kusche (2020) are reduced from the calibrated accelerometer data. The resulting atmospheric drag is then related to the thermospheric neutral density following the direct procedure by Doornbos et al. (2010) with temperature and density of atmospheric constituents from the empirical model NRLMSIS2.0. We apply an accommodation coefficient of 0.93 for GRACE, 0.82 for Swarm and 0.85 for CHAMP. Detailed information about the processing can be found in the ReadMe.txt and in Vielberg et al. (2021, in review). The final thermospheric neutral densities with a temporal resolution of 10 seconds are provided as monthly netCDF files.
Date made available2021


  • accelerometer
  • mass density
  • neutral density
  • satellite data
  • Swarm
  • thermopshere

Cite this