New perspectives for high accuracy SLR with second generation geodesic satellites
- Lund, Glenn
- Jun 1, 1993.
- Physical Description:
- 1 electronic document
- Restrictions on Access:
- Unclassified, Unlimited, Publicly available.
Free-to-read Unrestricted online access
- This paper reports on the accuracy limitations imposed by geodesic satellite signatures, and on the potential for achieving millimetric performances by means of alternative satellite concepts and an optimized 2-color system tradeoff. Long distance laser ranging, when performed between a ground (emitter/receiver) station and a distant geodesic satellite, is now reputed to enable short arc trajectory determinations to be achieved with an accuracy of 1 to 2 centimeters. This state-of-the-art accuracy is limited principally by the uncertainties inherent to single-color atmospheric path length correction. Motivated by the study of phenomena such as postglacial rebound, and the detailed analysis of small-scale volcanic and strain deformations, the drive towards millimetric accuracies will inevitably be felt. With the advent of short pulse (less than 50 ps) dual wavelength ranging, combined with adequate detection equipment (such as a fast-scanning streak camera or ultra-fast solid-state detectors) the atmospheric uncertainty could potentially be reduced to the level of a few millimeters, thus, exposing other less significant error contributions, of which by far the most significant will then be the morphology of the retroreflector satellites themselves. Existing geodesic satellites are simply dense spheres, several 10's of cm in diameter, encrusted with a large number (426 in the case of LAGEOS) of small cube-corner reflectors. A single incident pulse, thus, results in a significant number of randomly phased, quasi-simultaneous return pulses. These combine coherently at the receiver to produce a convolved interference waveform which cannot, on a shot to shot basis, be accurately and unambiguously correlated to the satellite center of mass. This paper proposes alternative geodesic satellite concepts, based on the use of a very small number of cube-corner retroreflectors, in which the above difficulties are eliminated while ensuring, for a given emitted pulse, the return of a single clean pulse with an adequate cross-section.
- Other Subject(s):
- NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) Collection.
- Document ID: 19940011112.
Accession ID: 94N15585.
NASA. Goddard Space Flight Center, Eighth International Workshop on Laser Ranging Instrumentation; 9 p.
- No Copyright.
View MARC record | catkey: 15662808