Multi buoy system observation for GPS/A seafloor positioning
Monday, 15 December 2014
We are developing a method for observation of seafloor crustal deformation using kinematic GPS and acoustic ranging system. The system measures seafloor crustal deformation by determining position of benchmarks on the seafloor using a vessel which link-up GPS and acoustic signals. Acoustic ranging is used to measure distance between the vessel and the seafloor benchmarks. And kinematic GPS is used to locate the moving vessel every 0.2 seconds. Now we have deployed 4 seafloor benchmark units at Suruga Bay and 4 units at Kumano Basin both off-pacific coast Japan. At each survey site, three seafloor transponders are settled to define a benchmark unit. In this system, each measurement takes about ten hours and both sound speed structure and the benchmark unit positions were determined simultaneously for the each measurement using a tomographic technique. This tomographic technique was adopted based on assumption that the sound speed structure is horizontally layered and changes only in time, not in space. However, when sound speed structure has a heterogeneity, the assumption of a horizontal layering causes systematic error in the determination of seafloor benchmarks(Ikuta et al 2009AGU). So we are developing a new system using multi-buoy. Multi-buoy plays the role of vessel. Conducting observation using the buoys, we can estimate spatial variation of sound speed structures as a sloped structure every moment. With the single vessel system, we solve a kind of average sound speed over the different paths to the three seafloor transponders. Using the multi-buoy system, they can detect the lateral variation as difference of the average sound speeds obtained by different buoys, which improve the accuracy of the benchmark locations. In November 2013, Observation of seafloor crustal deformation using the buoys was held in Suruga Bay. In this study, we report the result of estimations of heterogeneous sound speed structures.