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ISSN  2096-3955

CN  10-1502/P

Citation: Shen, Y., Wang, Q. Y., Rao, W. L., and Sun, W. K. (2022). Spatial distribution characteristics and mechanism of nonhydrological time-variable gravity in China continent. Earth Planet. Phys., 6(1), 96–107.

2022, 6(1): 96-107. doi: 10.26464/epp2022009


Spatial distribution characteristics and mechanism of nonhydrological time-variable gravity in China continent

University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China

Corresponding author: WenKe Sun,

Received Date: 2021-08-11
Web Publishing Date: 2021-12-24

The purpose of this study is to explore nonhydrological mass transfer in China continent. For this purpose, gravity recovery and climate experiment (GRACE) data were obtained to study the spatial distribution of time variant gravity signals in China continent. Then, from auxiliary hydrological data processed according to the current hydrological model, a new more comprehensive hydrological model of China continent was constructed. Finally, the time variant signals of this new hydrological model were removed from the time variant gravity field computed from GRACE data, thus obtaining a description of the nonhydrological mass transfer of China continent. The physical sources and mechanisms of the resulting mass transfer are then discussed. The improved, more realistic, hydrological model used here was created by selecting the hydrological components with the best correlations in existing hydrological models, by use of correlation calculation, analysis, and comparison. This improved model includes water in soils and deeper strata, in the vegetation canopy, in lakes, snow, and glaciers, and in other water components (mainly reservoir storage, swamps, and rivers). The spatial distribution of the transfer signals due to nonhydrological mass in China continent was obtained by subtracting the combined hydrological model from the GRACE time-variable gravity field. The results show that the nonhydrological signals in China continent collected in GRACE data were mainly positive signals, and were distributed in the Bohai Rim and the northern and eastern parts of the Tibetan Plateau. The above nonhydrological mass transfer signals have been studied further and are discussed. The results show that the nonhydrological mass migration signals in the Bohai Rim region originate primarily from sea level change and marine sediment accumulation. The mass accumulation from Indian plate collision in the Tibetan Plateau appears to be the main reason for the increase in the residual gravity field in that region.

Key words: GRACE, hydrological model, time-variable gravity signal, nonhydrological signal

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Spatial distribution characteristics and mechanism of nonhydrological time-variable gravity in China continent

Yue Shen, QiuYu Wang, WeiLong Rao, WenKe Sun