Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Periodic Report Summary - ART-X (Advanced receiver terminal extension to technology and market evolution)

Project context and objectives:

With the development of the Galileo satellite navigation system or the upgrade of the existing Global positioning system (GPS) with new frequencies and capabilities, improved performance for professional applications is possible. This requires the availability of suited commercial Global navigation satellite system (GNSS) receivers beyond the current professional receivers typically supporting two frequencies on GPS and GLONASS.

In the future up to three frequencies per GNSS and up to four GNSS must be supported by professional receivers. Additionally new modulation schemes (AltBOC, MBOC), high radio-frequency-bandwidth signals combined with a certain level of the signal configurability (e.g. GPS L2C) will be introduced, also requiring a certain flexibility for the coming professional receivers. Also the emerging of new technologies like software receiver, which could play an important role related to flexibility and advanced signal and navigation processing, has to be considered in the future portfolio of 'state-of-the-art' technologies suited for professional GNSS receivers.

The basic objective of the project was to develop an innovative Field-programmable gate array (FPGA) based prototype receiver being able to cover GPS-IIF, Galileo and GLONASS completely by supporting all new modulations, bandwidths with the necessary flexibility to adapt to future changes in Signal-in-space interface control document (SIS ICD) of the different systems.

Furthermore, the classical receiver issues, namely multipath, interference and scintillation were studied considering the new signals with improved detection and mitigation techniques. Additionally the GNSS heading driven applications like agriculture and machine control were considered with a dual antenna radio-frequency-front-end developments and related signal processing.

A study assessing the trade-off amongst classical Application-specific integrated circuits (ASIC), FPGA and Shortwave (SW)-receiver architecture for a professional receiver in a commercial application frame would be an important trade-off in the frame of the project.

Finally, emphasis was laid on the realistic testing of the developed technologies and the ART-X prototype receiver, enabling clear assessment of the suitability of the new technologies for future professional receivers. Finally a major objective was to analyse the potential target markets, to select a suited target market and to adjust the development planning of ART-X to fit into the selected COTS professional market.

Project results:

In the ART-X project several important lines of activity were followed during the second progress period with some important results achieved.
The 'Advanced technology' line of activity was completely finalised. In particular, the activities 'Difference correlator', 'Multipath error estimation' were verified in their feasibility. In particular, during the final trials for the attitude determination it could be shown that the difference correlator concept was also applicable in this case.

The ionospheric scintillation and the third order ionospheric frequency correction were finalised.

Testing with the attitude determination system was performed using the hardware simulation of the Networked control system (NCS), as well as with real data. This was the final proof that the attitude system worked as specified.

The ART-X receiver prototype was finalised and tested during the period. The main goal of integrating the Real-time kinematic (RTK) capability on-board was achieved and the corresponding tests were successful. Some difficulties were experienced during the testing phase, which could, however, be traced to technical defects in the receivers in question rather than fundamental difficulties with the receiver concept.

Potential impact:

A sound business plan for professional receiver was a major outcome, requiring an in-depth understanding of the target market but also the related constraints in terms of patents and competitors. Related to this, user requirements for a future professional receiver were also an important result.

New knowledge in terms of concepts and algorithms for improved signal processing to mitigate the 'classical' receiver performance issues (multipath, interference and scintillation) were the expected important results.

Of highest importance was the feasibility for the new 'Differential correlator' RTK approach as a suited new technique with some special advantages beyond the classical RTK approaches. The development of a suited prototype receiver platform able to directly focus on a suited target market, but also as a general development platform for future commercial professional receiver was a very important result. Finally, clear indications of achieved capabilities and performance improvements as guideline for future commercialisation activities were expected.

Related information

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