One-Centimeter Orbit Determination for Jason-1: New GPS-Based Strategies

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The U.S./French Jason-1 satellite is carrying a state-of-the-art GPS receiver to support precise orbit determination (POD) requirements. The performance of the Jason-1 “BlackJack” GPS receiver was strongly reflected in early POD results from the mission, enabling radial accuracies of 1–2 cm soon after the satellite's 2001 launch. We have made further advances in the GPS-based POD for Jason-1, most notably in describing the phase center variations of the on-board GPS antenna. We have also adopted new geopotential models from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE). The new strategies have enabled us to better exploit the unique contributions of the BlackJack GPS tracking data in the POD process. Results of both internal and external (e.g., laser ranging) comparisons indicate that orbit accuracies of 1 cm (radial RMS) are being achieved for Jason-1 using GPS data alone.

Keywords: GPS; Jason-1; precise orbit determination; satellite altimetry

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Jet Propulsion Laboratory California Institute of Technology Pasadena California USA

Publication date: January 1, 2004

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