The on-orbit calibration of geometric parameters of the Tian-Hui 1 (TH-1) satellite

Jianrong Wang, R. Wang, X. Hu, Z. Su

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


The on-orbit calibration of geometric parameters is a key step in improving the location accuracy of satellite images without using Ground Control Points (GCPs). Most methods of on-orbit calibration are based on the self-calibration using additional parameters. When using additional parameters, different number of additional parameters may lead to different results. The triangulation bundle adjustment is another way to calibrate the geometric parameters of camera, which can describe the changes in each geometric parameter. When triangulation bundle adjustment method is applied to calibrate geometric parameters, a prerequisite is that the strip model can avoid systematic deformation caused by the rate of attitude changes. Concerning the stereo camera, the influence of the intersection angle should be considered during calibration. The Equivalent Frame Photo (EFP) bundle adjustment based on the Line-Matrix CCD (LMCCD) image can solve the systematic distortion of the strip model, and obtain high accuracy location without using GCPs. In this paper, the triangulation bundle adjustment is used to calibrate the geometric parameters of TH-1 satellite cameras based on LMCCD image. During the bundle adjustment, the three-line array cameras are reconstructed by adopting the principle of inverse triangulation. Finally, the geometric accuracy is validated before and after on-orbit calibration using 5 testing fields. After on-orbit calibration, the 3D geometric accuracy is improved to 11.8 m from 170 m. The results show that the location accuracy of TH-1 without using GCPs is significantly improved using the on-orbit calibration of the geometric parameters.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)144-151
JournalISPRS journal of photogrammetry and remote sensing
Publication statusPublished - 2017




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