Precise Orbit Determination and accelerometry calibration modelling of the GRACE Follow-On mission

Thomas Papanikolaou

Research output: Contribution to conference without publisher/journalPosterResearchpeer-review

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Precise orbit determination is a major objective in satellite geodesy and data analysis of several satellite missions observing Earth or another planet. Satellite gravity missions such as the Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment (GRACE) and GRACE Follow-On missions, require high level of orbit precision (cm level) in order to capture the gravity field modelling of static and time-variable components. GRACE satellites are equipped with on-board accelerometers as being a key observation instrument for the direct measurement of non-gravitational perturbations at orbital altitude. The accelerometers calibration modelling within an orbit determination scheme is essential for precise orbits and the gravity field mapping. Furthermore, the accelerometry data processing may become crucial for accelerometers with reduced performance following the launch into space. That is the case of one of the GRACE-FO satellites. The current study’s focus is on the GRACE-FO precise orbit determination along with the accelerometry calibration modelling. In particular, the non-gravitational forces modelling is based on the estimation of accelerometer calibration parameters such as bias, drift and scale factors in combination with empirical forces of cycle-per-revolution terms. The consideration of such empirical perturbations aims at capturing periodic mismodelling effects. The applied approach leads to orbital residuals varying within a few cm while the inter-satellite LRI and KBR range-rate data residuals vary within a few μm/sec.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date6 Sept 2022
Publication statusPublished - 6 Sept 2022
EventNordic Geodetic Commission (NKG) General Assembly 2022 - Copenhagen, Denmark
Duration: 5 Sept 20228 Sept 2022


ConferenceNordic Geodetic Commission (NKG) General Assembly 2022
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