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Glonass Laser Ranging Accuracy With Satellite Signature Effect


GLONASS satellites have been tracked by the worldwide laser ranging networkas well as by the GLONASS-borne microwave-based technique. Owing to thelarge size of their corner cube reflector arrays, the amount of ranging data is enough to determine their orbits from laser ranging data alone. We found, however, that the large size of the array affected the accuracy of measurement to an extent that is dependent on the characteristics of the ranging systems. An azimuthal variation of the reflector array response was also detected in observations from single-photon laser ranging. Orbital analysis reveals that the effect makes the measured range on average 22 mm shorter than expected in the absence of the large array, which explains more than half of the offset of 39 mm previously discovered between microwave and laser orbits.

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Otsubo, T., Appleby, G.M. & Gibbs, P. Glonass Laser Ranging Accuracy With Satellite Signature Effect. Surveys in Geophysics 22, 509–516 (2001).

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  • laser ranging
  • satellite signature effect