Journal of Seismology

, Volume 18, Issue 1, pp 151–161 | Cite as

A new algorithm for tight integration of real-time GPS and strong-motion records, demonstrated on simulated, experimental, and real seismic data

  • Rui Tu
  • Maorong Ge
  • Rongjiang Wang
  • Thomas R. Walter
Original Article


The complementary advantages of GPS and seismic measurements are well recognized in seismotectonic monitoring studies. Therefore, integrated processing of the two data streams has been proposed recently in an attempt to obtain accurate and reliable information of surface displacements associated with earthquakes. A hitherto still critical issue in the integrated processing is real-time detection and precise estimation of the transient baseline error in the seismic records. Here, we report on a new approach by introducing the seismic acceleration corrected by baseline errors into the state equation system. The correction is performed and regularly updated in short epochs (with increments which may be as short as seconds), so that station position, velocity, and acceleration can be constrained very tightly and baseline error can be estimated as a random-walk process. With the adapted state equation system, our study highlights the use of a new approach developed for integrated processing of GPS and seismic data by means of sequential least-squares adjustment. The efficiency of our approach is demonstrated and validated using simulated, experimental, and real datasets. The latter were collected at collocated GPS and seismic stations around the 4 April 2010, E1 Mayor-Cucapah earthquake (Mw, 7.2). The results have shown that baseline errors of the strong-motion sensors are corrected precisely and high-precision seismic displacements are real-timely obtained by the new approach.


High-rate GPS Strong-motion records Baseline error Tight integration Precise point positioning 



The high rate GPS data were download from and the accelerometer data are available from The authors thank their colleagues for technical support in the experiment and two anonymous reviewers for valuable comments. Mr. Rui Tu is financially supported by the China Scholarship Council for his Ph.D. study in Germany.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rui Tu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Maorong Ge
    • 1
  • Rongjiang Wang
    • 1
  • Thomas R. Walter
    • 1
  1. 1.GFZ German Research Centre for GeosciencesPotsdamGermany
  2. 2.University of PotsdamPotsdamGermany

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