Analysis and Prediction of GNSS Estimated Total Electron Contents



The least squares harmonic estimation is applied to the hourly time-series of Total Electron Contents (TEC) derived from ionospheric models using seven years of GPS observations processed by Bernese software. The frequencies of dominant spectral components in the spectrum are estimated. We observe significant periodic patterns with periods of 24 h and its fractions 24h/n, n=2,…,11, which are the well-known Fourier series decomposition of the diurnal periodic pattern of the ionospheric variations. The principal component with daily signal is due to the day-night variation of TEC values. The semidiurnal and tri-diurnal components can be explained by the substorm signatures in both auroral electrojet (in layer E) and ring current variations (related to magnetosphere at low latitudes) and tidal effects. Also, the spectrum shows the well-known 27-day period of solar cycle variations. We observe annual, semi-annual and tri-annual signals in the series. The detected signals are then applied to perform an ionospheric prediction. The results indicate that a substantial part (in the absolute sense) of the TEC values can be predicted using this base function, and an undetectable part remains as disturbed noise which can exceed 20 TEC units for the disturbed ionosphere. In comparison with the standard Klobuchar model, the model presented in this contribution will significantly improve the single frequency GPS positioning accuracy.