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Time-variable gravity and mass redistribution from synergistic use of GRACE-FO and Chinese gravity satellites.


01.08.2021 - 31.07.2024


DFG (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft) & NSFC (National Natural Science Foundation of China)


Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jürgen Kusche

Dr.-Ing. Anno Löcher

Dr.-Ing. Christina Strohmenger


Currently, China is developing a new gravity field satellite mission, TianQin-2. In this project, we will improve time-variable gravity field modelling and investigate the additional benefits of the upcoming mission. TianQin-2 might well reach its operational phase while GRACE-FO is still in orbit, offering various constellation possibilities. We will optimize the TianQin-2 orbit through simulation studies and investigate  advantages for gravity field modelling.

Furthermore, gravity field models from the GRACE and GRACE-FO missions will be improved at the instrument processing level (Chinese group) and in the postprocessing step (German group). Our two main study areas are (1) The East China Sea, where sea level rise is above-average with potentially large environmental, economic, and political impacts. We will improve the regional sea level budget in this region by combining gravimetric measurements with altimetry, tide gauge data and models. (2) The North China Plain, a densely populated and agricultarally important area, where we will investigate groundwater withdrawals.


  • University of Bonn
  • Institute of Geodesy and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (IGG-CAS, Wuhan, China)
  • School of Geospatial Engineering and Science, Sun Yat-sen University (SYSU, Zhuhai, China)
  • College of Surveying and Geo-Informatics, Tongji University (CSGI, Shanghai, China)