Hartebeesthoek Radio Astronomy Observatory: Space Geodesy status and progress



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LudwigCombrinck, Hartebeesthoek Radio Astronomy Observatory, South Africa, ludwig@hartrao.ac.za


A brief overview of the current status of the global space geodetic networks is given and a sketch of the future of space geodesy from South Africa’s perspective is made relative to a global perspective. The development of the Global Geodetic Observing System is brought into context with what is required in South Africa to allow participation in this new modernized space geodetic network. Additional space geodesy observatory sites should be developed at Matjiesfontein, Sutherland and Klerefontein to facilitate an improved and expanded South African network which is compatible with the stringent and high accuracy requirements of the new global network.

Simulations indicate that HartRAO is an extremely valuable component in the global network of geodetic stations and that total network efficiency suffers if it were not to participate in the new network. HartRAO will be upgraded and equipped with modern geodetic instrumentation, including a state of the art, wide-band, fast slewing radio antenna, which will enable participation in new global developments in space geodesy.

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