Airborne Gravity Data Enhances NGS Experimental Gravimetric Geoid in Alaska

Wednesday, 17 December 2014
Vicki A Childers1, Simon A Holmes1,2, Xiaopeng Li1,3 and Daniel R Roman4, (1)NOAA, National Geodetic Survey, Silver Spring, MD, United States, (2)SGT inc., Greenbelt, MD, United States, (3)DSTt@NGS, Silver Spring, MD, United States, (4)National Geodetic Survey, SRSD, Silver Spring, MD, United States
The U.S. National Geodetic Survey [NGS], through their Gravity for the Redefinition of the American Vertical Datum [GRAV-D] program, continues to update its gravimetry holdings by flying new airborne gravity surveys over a large fraction of the USA and its territories. By 2022, NGS intends that all orthometric heights in the USA will be determined in the field by using a reliable national gravimetric geoid model to transform from geodetic heights obtained from GPS. Several airborne campaigns have already been flown over Alaska and its coastline. Some of this Alaskan coastal data have been incorporated into a new NGS experimental geoid model - xGEOID14. The xGEOID14 model is the first in a series of annual experimental geoid models that will incorporate NGS GRAV-D airborne data. This series provides a useful benchmark for assessing and improving current techniques by which the airborne and land-survey data are filtered and cleaned, and then combined with satellite gravity models, elevation data (etc.) with the ultimate aim of computing a geoid model that can support a national physical height system by 2022.

Here we will examine the NGS GRAV-D airborne data in Alaska, and assess its contribution to xGEOID14. Future prospects for xGEOID15 will also be considered.