Assessment of Ground-Based Microwave Radiometry for Calibration of Atmospheric Variability in Spacecraft Tracking
Journal article, 2014

In a suggested radio propagation experiment using a deep space antenna, accurate calibration of the propagation delay through the Earth’s atmosphere is essential. One or two microwave radiometers can be used for this purpose. Differences in precise locations of the radiometer(s) and antenna to be calibrated leave a residual wet path delay value. We computed the Allan Standard Deviation (ASD) of this residual, as well as the one resulting from different pointing positions in the plane of the sky, by simulations. Pointing offsets, e.g., to avoid solar radiation into the radiometer beam, lead in general to an increased ASD. However, for many observation geometries a deliberate pointing offset can compensate for the location differences. In the case studied we found a reduction of the ASD with up to 45% compared to the ASD obtained for a zero pointing offset. The size of the calculated ASD depends strongly on the model parameters used, e.g., the turbulence strength parameter C_n^2, which has a significant natural variation over a year.

Atmospheric modeling

microwave radiometry

space exploration.

Author

A. Graziani

University of Bologna

Per O. J. Jarlemark

SP Sveriges Tekniska Forskningsinstitut AB

Gunnar Elgered

Chalmers, Earth and Space Sciences, Space Geodesy and Geodynamics

A. Martellucci

European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESA ESTEC)

M. Mercolino

European Space Operations Centre

P. Tortora

University of Bologna

IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation

0018-926X (ISSN)

Vol. 62 5 2634-2641 6746661

Subject Categories

Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences

Communication Systems

Roots

Basic sciences

DOI

10.1109/TAP.2014.2307582

More information

Latest update

8/23/2019