Scientific and Operational Roadmap for Fiducial Reference Measurements in Satellite Altimetry Calibration & Validation

  • Stelios P. MertikasEmail author
  • Craig Donlon
  • Rob Cullen
  • Achilles Tripolitsiotis
Conference paper
Part of the International Association of Geodesy Symposia book series (IAG SYMPOSIA, volume 150)


This work provides the essential elements for a scientific and operational roadmap with guidelines and practical directions to calibrate satellite altimeters under a new established standard of Fiducial Reference Measurements for Altimetry. According to this new principle, ground facilities, instrumentation and procedures, set up for calibration and validation (Cal/Val) of observations and products in altimetry, shall follow well-documented procedures and protocols, transparent to all involved. It shall also deliver uncertainty budgets of the Cal/Val results which should be built upon metrological standards and capable of being traced to Système International units. At first, this paper describes some guidelines for establishing new facilities for satellite altimetry Cal/Val with respect to their geographical location. Secondly, it gives requirements for maintaining an efficient performance and functionality for the Cal/Val facility. Third, it presents the optimal design and setup for the facility’s instrumentation in relation to the Cal/Val technique employed. Finally, this work recommends in-situ data set formats.


Altimetry Calibration Fiducial reference measurements Roadmap 



This work has been supported and funded by the EU and the European Space Agency (ESA No. 4000117101/16/I/BG).


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stelios P. Mertikas
    • 1
    Email author
  • Craig Donlon
    • 2
  • Rob Cullen
    • 2
  • Achilles Tripolitsiotis
    • 3
  1. 1.Geodesy & Geomatics Engineering Lab, Technical University ofCreteChaniaGreece
  2. 2.ESA/ESTECNoordwijkThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Space Geomatica PCChaniaGreece

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