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Geoscientific Instrumentation, Methods and Data Systems An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/gi-2020-31
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/gi-2020-31
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  29 Sep 2020

29 Sep 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal GI.

Error estimate for fluxgate magnetometer in-flight calibration on a spinning spacecraft

Yasuhito Narita, Ferdinand Plaschke, Werner Magnes, David Fischer, and Daniel Schmid Yasuhito Narita et al.
  • Space Research Institute, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Schmiedlstr. 6, A-8042 Graz, Austria

Abstract. Fluxgate magnetometers are widely used for in-situ magnetic field measurements in the context of geophysical and solar system studies. Like in most of experimental studies, magnetic field measurements using the fluxgate magnetometers are constrained to the associated uncertainties. To evaluate the performance of magnetometers, the measurement uncertainties of calibrated magnetic field data are quantitatively studied for a spinning spacecraft. The uncertainties are derived analytically by perturbing the calibration procedure, and are simplified into the first-order expression including the offset errors and the coupling of calibration parameter errors with the ambient magnetic field. The error study shows how the uncertainty sources combine through the calibration process. The final error depends on the ambient environment such as the magnitude of magnetic field relative to the offset error and the angle of magnetic field to the spacecraft spin axis are important factors. The offset uncertainties are the major factor in a low-field environment, while the angle uncertainties (rotation angle in the spin plane, sensor non-orthogonality, and sensor misalignment to the spacecraft reference directions) become more important in a high-field environment in a proportional way to the magnetic field. The error formulas serve as a useful tool in designing high-precision magnetometers in future spacecraft missions as well as in data analysis methods in geophysical and solar system science.

Yasuhito Narita et al.

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Yasuhito Narita et al.

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Latest update: 29 Oct 2020
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Short summary
Systematic error of calibrated fluxgate magnetometer data is studied for a spinning spacecraft. The major error comes from the offset uncertainty when the ambient magnetic field is low, whle the error represents the combination of non-orthogonality, misalignment to spacecraft reference direction, and gain when the ambient field is high. The results are useful in developing future high-precision magnetometers as well as an error estimate in scientific studies using magnetometer data.
Systematic error of calibrated fluxgate magnetometer data is studied for a spinning spacecraft....
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