, Volume 81, Issue 12, pp 781-798
Date: 18 Apr 2007

Generation of a consistent absolute phase-center correction model for GPS receiver and satellite antennas

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Abstract

The development and numerical values of the new absolute phase-center correction model for GPS receiver and satellite antennas, as adopted by the International GNSS (global navigation satellite systems) Service, are presented. Fixing absolute receiver antenna phase-center corrections to robot-based calibrations, the GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam (GFZ) and the Technische Universität München reprocessed more than 10 years of GPS data in order to generate a consistent set of nadir-dependent phase-center variations (PCVs) and offsets in the z-direction pointing toward the Earth for all GPS satellites in orbit during that period. The agreement between the two solutions estimated by independent software packages is better than 1 mm for the PCVs and about 4 cm for the z-offsets. In addition, the long time-series facilitates the study of correlations of the satellite antenna corrections with several other parameters such as the global terrestrial scale or the orientation of the orbital planes with respect to the Sun. Finally, completely reprocessed GPS solutions using different phase-center correction models demonstrate the benefits from switching from relative to absolute antenna phase-center corrections. For example, tropospheric zenith delay biases between GPS and very long baseline interferometry (VLBI), as well as the drift of the terrestrial scale, are reduced and the GPS orbit consistency is improved.