High-resolution gravity and geoid models in Tahiti obtained from new airborne and land gravity observations: Data fusion by spectral combination Geodesy

Hsuan Chang Shih, Chein-way Hwang*, Jean Pierre Barriot, Maxime Mouyen, Pascal Corréia, Didier Lequeux, Lydie Sichoix

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

For the first time, we carry out an airborne gravity survey and we collect new land gravity data over the islands of Tahiti and Moorea in French Polynesia located in the South Pacific Ocean. The new land gravity data are registered with GPS-derived coordinates, network-adjusted and outlier-edited, resulting in a mean standard error of 17 μGal. A crossover analysis of the airborne gravity data indicates a mean gravity accuracy of 1.7 mGal. New marine gravity around the two islands is derived from Geosat/GM, ERS-1/GM, Jason-1/GM, and Cryosat-2 altimeter data. A new 1-s digital topography model is constructed and is used to compute the topographic gravitational effects. To use EGM08 over Tahiti and Moorea, the optimal degree of spherical harmonic expansion is 1500. The fusion of the gravity datasets is made by the band-limited least-squares collocation, which best integrates datasets of different accuracies and spatial resolutions. The new high-resolution gravity and geoid grids are constructed on a 9-s grid. Assessments of the grids by measurements of ground gravity and geometric geoidal height result in RMS differences of 0.9 mGal and 0.4 cm, respectively. The geoid model allows 1-cm orthometric height determination by GPS and Lidar and yields a consistent height datum for Tahiti and Moorea. The new Bouguer anomalies show gravity highs and lows in the centers and land-sea zones of the two islands, allowing further studies of the density structure and volcanism in the region.

Original languageEnglish
Article number124
JournalEarth, Planets and Space
Volume67
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 6 Dec 2015

Keywords

  • French Polynesia
  • Geoid
  • Gravity anomaly
  • Least-squares collocation
  • Moorea
  • Tahiti

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