In gravity field modeling, fused models that utilize satellite, airborne and terrestrial gravity observations are often employed to deal with erroneous terrestrially derived gravity datasets. These terrestrial datasets may suffer from long-wavelength systematic errors and inhomogeneous data coverage, which are not prevalent in airborne and satellite datasets. Airborne gravity acquisition plays an essential role in gravity field modeling, providing valuable information of the Earth’s gravity field at medium and short wavelengths. Thus, assessing the impact of airborne gravity data to fused gravity field models is important for identifying problematic regions. Six study regions that represent different gravity field variability and terrestrial data point-density characteristics are investigated to quantify the impact of airborne gravity data to fused gravity field models. The numerical assessments of these representative regions resulted in predictions of airborne gravity impact for individual states and provinces in the USA and Canada, respectively. Prediction results indicate that, depending on the terrestrial data point-density and gravity field variability, the expected impact of airborne gravity can reach up to 3mGal (in terms of standard deviation) in Canada and Alaska (over areas of 1∘× 1∘). However, in the mainland US region, small changes are expected (0.2–0.4 mGal over areas of 1∘× 1∘) due to the availability of high spatial resolution terrestrial data. These results can serve as a guideline for setting airborne gravity data acquisition priorities and for improving future planning of airborne gravity surveys.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Geochemistry and Petrology
- Computers in Earth Sciences