This chapter describes a theory and application of satellite gravity and altimetry data for determining Moho constituents (i.e. Moho depth and density contrast) with support from a seismic Moho model in a least-squares adjustment. It presents and applies the Vening Meinesz-Moritz gravimetric-isostatic model in recovering the global Moho features. Internal and external uncertainty estimates are also determined. Special emphasis is devoted to presenting methods for eliminating the so-called non-isostatic effects, i.e. the gravimetric signals from the Earth both below the crust and from partly unknown density variations in the crust and effects due to delayed Glacial Isostatic Adjustment as well as for capturing Moho features not related with isostatic balance. The global means of the computed Moho depths and density contrasts are 23.8±0.05 km and 340.5 ± 0.37 kg/m3, respectively. The two Moho features vary between 7.6 and 70.3 km as well as between 21.0 and 650.0 kg/m3. Validation checks were performed for our modeled crustal depths using a recently published seismic model, yielding an RMS difference of 4 km.
Part of the book: Geodetic Sciences