We have analyzed recent gravity recovery and climate experiment (GRACE) RL04 monthly gravity solutions, using a new decorrelating post-processing approach. We find very good agreement with mass anomalies derived from a global hydrological model. The post-processed GRACE solutions exhibit only little amplitude damping and an almost negligible phase shift and period distortion for relevant hydrological basins. Furthermore, these post-processed GRACE solutions have been inspected in terms of data fit with respect to the original inter-satellite ranging and to SLR and GPS observations. This kind of comparison is new. We find variations of the data fit due to solution post-processing only within very narrow limits. This confirms our suspicion that GRACE data do not firmly 'pinpoint' the standard unconstrained solutions. Regarding the original Kusche (J Geod 81:733-749, 2007) decorrelation and smoothing method, a simplified (order-convolution) approach has been developed. This simplified approach allows to realize a higher resolution - as necessary, e.g., for generating computed GRACE observations - and needs far less coefficients to be stored.
- Hydrological model validation
- Time-variable gravity