Wave propagation simulation of radio occultations based on ECMWF refractivity profiles

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This paper describes a complete radio occultation simulation environment, including realistic refractivity profiles, wave propagation modeling, instrument modeling, and bending angle retrieval. The wave propagator is used to simulate radio occultation measurements. The radio waves are propagated through a refractivity field which has been calculated with the use of numerical weather prediction models. The numerical weather prediction model used in this paper is a model from the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF). The wave propagator has been used to simulate a number of radio occultations. The output from the wave propagator simulator is used as input to a Full Spectrum Inversion retrieval module which calculates geophysical parameters. These parameters can be compared to the ECMWF atmospheric profiles. The comparison can be used to reveal system errors and get a better understanding of the physics. The wave propagation simulations will in this paper also be compared to real measurements. These radio occultations have been exposed to the same atmospheric conditions as the radio occultations simulated by the wave propagator. This comparison reveals that precise radio occultations can be simulated when the simulations are based on wave propagation and refractivity field inputs from a numerical weather prediction model.
Original languageEnglish
JournalRadio Science
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)778-788
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • radio wave propagation
  • remote sensing
  • signal processing
  • radio occultation
  • multipath
  • FSI

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