This paper provides a brief overview of two linear inverse problems concerned with the determination of the Earth’s interior: inverse gravimetry and normal mode tomography. Moreover, a vector spline method is proposed for a combined solution of both problems. This method uses localised basis functions, which are based on reproducing kernels, and is related to approaches which have been successfully applied to the inverse gravimetric problem and the seismic traveltime tomography separately.
The inverse problem of recovering the Earth's density distribution from data of the first or second derivative of the gravitational potential at satellite orbit height is discussed for a ball-shaped Earth. This problem is exponentially ill-posed. In this paper a multiscale regularization technique using scaling functions and wavelets constructed for the corresponding integro-differential equations is introduced and its numerical applications are discussed. In the numerical part the second radial derivative of the gravitational potential at 200 km orbitheight is calculated on a point grid out of the NASA/GSFC/NIMA Earth Geopotential Model (EGM96). Those simulated derived data out of SGG (satellite gravity gradiometry) satellite measurements are taken for convolutions with the introduced scaling functions yielding a multiresolution analysis of harmonic density variations in the Earth's crust. Moreover, the noise sensitivity of the regularization technique is analyzed numerically.
We show the numerical applicability of a multiresolution method based on harmonic splines on the 3-dimensional ball which allows the regularized recovery of the harmonic part of the Earth's mass density distribution out of different types of gravity data, e.g. different radial derivatives of the potential, at various positions which need not be located on a common sphere. This approximated harmonic density can be combined with its orthogonal anharmonic complement, e.g. determined out of the splitting function of free oscillations, to an approximation of the whole mass density function. The applicability of the presented tool is demonstrated by several test calculations based on simulated gravity values derived from EGM96. The method yields a multiresolution in the sense that the localization of the constructed spline basis functions can be increased which yields in combination with more data a higher resolution of the resulting spline. Moreover, we show that a locally improved data situation allows a highly resolved recovery in this particular area in combination with a coarse approximation elsewhere which is an essential advantage of this method, e.g. compared to polynomial approximation.