EGU General Assembly 2022
© Author(s) 2022. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

MPG-S-NET: A multi-purpose low-cost GNSS collocation station network 

Matthias Aichinger-Rosenberger, Gregor Moeller, Roland Hohensinn, and Markus Rothacher
Matthias Aichinger-Rosenberger et al.
  • Institute of Geodesy and Photogrammetry, ETH Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland (

Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receivers are very versatile sensors, which have not only revolutionized positioning and navigation applications, but also provide numerous opportunities for environmental monitoring and remote sensing. Beside the monitoring of long-term ground movements and geodynamics, typical applications include the provision of water vapor estimates for numerical weather prediction (NWP) and climate studies as well as real-time applications such as seismic and geohazard monitoring. The rising number and quality of low-cost GNSS equipment, coupled with innovative telecommunication approaches (Internet of Things), allow for an increased and more cost-effective usage of such devices for those monitoring purposes, and thus foster a fast decision-making process.

An especially beneficial approach is the collocation of GNSS sensors at already existing meteorological or seismic stations. By using available infrastructure for power supply and communication, it can provide a sustainable and energy-effective extension of existing monitoring capabilities. The different parameters collected on-site can be used for cross-validation or provision of corrections for GNSS positioning. Furthermore, through (close to) real-time availability of observations, such collocated stations can aid early-warning systems for many different types of natural hazards (from extreme weather events to landslides and earthquakes). At the Institute of Geodesy and Photogrammetry at ETH Zürich we develop GNSS instrumentation to equip meteorological stations from the SwissMetNet (SMN). The work is carried out in the course of a pilot study in cooperation with MeteoSwiss.

This contribution introduces initial results of the SMN station Zürich-Affoltern, where the first prototype GNSS payload has been installed. We highlight key capabilities of the low-cost GNSS equipment used for these high-precision geomonitoring purposes. Moreover, we discuss concrete ideas for the build-up of a dedicated collocation network within the DACH (Germany-Austria-Switzerland) border area and the opportunities arising from it. These opportunities include the sustainable enhancement of infrastructure for climate change monitoring in the Alpine region as well as the build-up of early-warning systems for multiple types of geohazards. The latter might be achieved through the combination of parameters collected on-site with complementary data (e.g. satellite observations or NWP output) using innovative, data-driven approaches. Finally, we showcase examples and the potential of recent and ongoing works using these data-driven approaches.

How to cite: Aichinger-Rosenberger, M., Moeller, G., Hohensinn, R., and Rothacher, M.: MPG-S-NET: A multi-purpose low-cost GNSS collocation station network , EGU General Assembly 2022, Vienna, Austria, 23–27 May 2022, EGU22-6873,, 2022.


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