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Course title 
Course code 
Syllabus 
Physical Geodesy 
CE678A 
Introduction: Need to study gravity, historical review, research areas, applications, open questions potential theory: some vector calculus, attraction and potential, potential of a solid body, laplace equation – exterior potential field, Poisson equation – interior potential field, spherical harmonics, boundaryvalue problems. Gravity field of the Earth: Gravitation, gravity, attraction of a point mass, attraction of a rigid body, gravity and shape of the Earth, level surfaces and plumb lines, natural coordinates. Normal gravity: Superposition principle, ellipsoid as an approximation of the Earth, the level ellipsoid, series expansion of the normal gravity field. Gravimetry: Functionals of the gravity field, terrestrial gravimetry – absolute and relative, airborne gravimetry, spaceborne gravimetry, gradiometry, torsion balance, gravity networks. Gravity field modelling: Linear model of physical geodesy, disturbing potential and gravity, anomalous potential and gravity, gravity reductions. Geoid modelling: The Stokes integral, Koch’s formula, VeningMeinesz formula, Molodensky’s approach, practical aspects. Statistics of the gravity field: The power spectrum, Kaula’s rule of thumb, covariance functions.. Height systems: Height measurements, physical and geometric heights and their relationship, height systems around the world, Geoid as a vertical reference frame. Temporal variations of the gravity field: Geophysical effects on gravity, loading theory, tides, hydrological loading, atmospheric loading, ocean loading, icemass loading, glacial isostatic adjustment.
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