Towards a Better Understanding of the Earth's Interior and Geophysical Exploration Research
Novak, Pavel1; Seber, Josef1; Valko, Milos1; Sprlak, Michal1; Baur, Oliver2; Tsoulis, Dimitrios3; Martinec, Zdenek4; Nico, Sneeuw5; van der Wal, Wouter6; Vermeersen, Bert6; Haagmans, Roger7
1New Technologies for Information Society, Faculty of Applied Sciences, University of West Bohemia, CZECH REPUBLIC; 2Austrian Academy of Sciences, Space Research Institute, AUSTRIA; 3Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Department of Geodesy and Surveying, GREECE; 4Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, Geophysics Section, IRELAND; 5University of Stuttgart, Institute of Geodesy, GERMANY; 6echnical University Delft, Astrodynamics and Space Missions, NETHERLANDS; 7ESA, NETHERLANDS
Within a STSE GOCE+ project funded by ESA geodesists and geophysicists from 6 European institutes have been investigating applications of gravitational gradients observed by GOCE in solid Earth physics. Over two distinct geographical areas regional geophysical models have been constrained through observed gradients continued downward to co-centric spherical surfaces starting with the mean orbital elevation of 255 km with steps of 50 km. The first area offshore Iceland covers the mid-ocean Reykjanes Ridge that plays a key role for creation of a new crust and for generation of ridge push driving partly plate motion. Gravitational gradients refine local density modelling that cannot uniquely be achieved through seismic measurements. In Africa, the second test area of the project, gravitational gradients are combined with seismic tomographic models of a continental lithospheric mantle (upper 200 km of the Earth’s mantle beneath the thin crustal layer) in order to refine an initial density model derived by standard 3-D modelling programs. The contribution reviews main outcomes of the project with the emphasis on gradient handling and gradient applications in geophysical modelling.