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Impact of self-attraction and loading on Earth rotation

Quinn, Katherine J.; Ponte, Rui M.; Tamisiea, Mark E.. 2015 Impact of self-attraction and loading on Earth rotation. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, 120 (6). 4510-4521. 10.1002/2015JB011980

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AGU Publisher statement: An edited version of this paper was published by AGU. © 2015 American Geophysical Union. Further reproduction or electronic distribution is not permitted doi 10.1002/2015JB011980
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Abstract/Summary

The impact of self-attraction and loading (SAL) on Earth rotation has not been previously considered except at annual timescales. We estimate Earth rotation excitations using models of atmospheric, oceanic, and land hydrology surface mass variations and investigate the importance of including SAL over monthly to interannual timescales. We assess SAL effects in comparison with simple mass balance effects where net mass exchanged with the atmosphere and land is distributed uniformly over the global ocean. For oceanic polar motion excitations, SAL impacts are important even though mass balance impact is minor except at the annual period. This is true of global (atmosphere + land + ocean) polar motion excitations as well, although the SAL impacts are smaller. When estimating length-of-day excitations, mass balance effects have a dominant impact, particularly for oceanic excitation. Although SAL can have a significant impact on estimated Earth rotation excitations, its consideration generally did not improve comparisons with geodetic observations. This result may change in the future as surface mass models and Earth rotation observations improve.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1002/2015JB011980
ISSN: 21699313
Additional Keywords: self-attraction and loading; Earth rotation; length of day; polar motion
NORA Subject Terms: Earth Sciences
Date made live: 22 Jun 2015 08:42 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/511097

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