Large scale ocean circulation from the GRACE GGM01 Geoid
The GRACE Gravity Model 01 (GGM01), computed from 111 days of GRACE K-band ranging (KBR) data, is differenced from a global mean sea surface (MSS) computed from a decade of satellite altimetry to determine a mean dynamic ocean topography (DOT). As a test of the GGM01 gravity model, large-scale zonal and meridional surface geostrophic currents are computed from the topography and are compared with those derived from a mean hydrographic surface. Reduction in residual RMS between the two by 30–60% (and increased correlation) indicates that the GGM01 geoid represents a dramatic improvement over older geoid models, which were developed from multiple satellite tracking data, altimetry, and surface gravity measurements. For the first time, all major current systems are clearly observed in the DOT from space-based measurements.