Based on the preliminary work in the research project KOMPASSION (Compact adaptive terminal antenna for interference-free satellite navigation), the accuracy of the receiver developed was significantly improved by using a second frequency band (E5a) and both right- and left-circular polarization. Further miniaturization was achieved through the use of production-ready manufacturing processes. In order to extend the interference resistance to deceptive signals, innovative methods of fake-signal suppression were designed and implemented. In addition, the company Antennentechnik Bad Blankenburg GmbH has built up an industrial demonstrator for vehicle applications whose performance has been proven by application-specific tests.
The KN Institute has developed a compact antenna array for the frequency bands E1 and E5a with dual polarization and real-time capable algorithms for direction estimation and beamforming. It was in charge of designing the test scenarios and conducting extensive tests and demonstrations at the Aldenhoven Testing Center (ATC). The advantages of the robust receiver system were convincingly demonstrated at the GSA workshop in Aachen in September 2015.
In addition to military applications, satellite navigation is increasingly serving civilian needs with high market and social benefits. Such applications have spread very rapidly since their introduction. Due to the increasing availability of GNSS signals and the progressive improvement of navigation receivers and software, they can now be found in most mobile phones and almost all types of vehicles (terrestrial, maritime, aeronautical).
Among others, the accuracy, performance and reliability of such systems will be further enhanced by the European Galileo project. Thus, new applications can be developed which further improve the market potential. The term "robust" is associated with a higher degree of immunity to interference and availability of navigation information, which is particularly important for the use of autonomous systems in the areas of transport, logistics and security. Examples include autonomous transport systems in short-haul applications or autonomous shunting in the freight sector, the radio-controlled operation ETCS (European Train Control System) in rail transport and safety-relevant navigation during automatic landing manoeuvres in civil air transport. Further applications, e.g. for freight transport in inland waterway transport, are obvious.
The KOSERNA project is directly linked to the KOMPASSION research project. The consortium of DLR, TU Ilmenau, IMMS and RWTH Aachen has developed key technologies for a robust receiver for satellite navigation that takes up as little space as possible and enables precise and reliable position determination through efficient suppression of interference signals. The main challenges were the miniaturization of antenna array and front end as well as the development of suitable, real-time capable algorithms for signal processing.
The extension of the system to receive two frequency bands and the coupling problems associated with miniaturization require an optimization of the antenna and the front end. Radiating elements, decoupling and matching network, calibration, receiver and digital signal processing must be further developed accordingly. The advantages of using both polarizations with regard to interference-free signal reception will also be investigated. To extend noise robustness to interfering signals, adapted signal processing methods for deceptive signal detection and suppression must be designed, optimized and implemented. In the digital part of the KOMPASSION system, an FPGA development board together with a standard PC was used for signal processing. Due to its form factor and high energy consumption, this platform is only partially suitable for use in mobile applications. An embedded system should be used in KOSERNA, so that the standard PC is not required. This significantly reduces the form factor of the receiver and its energy consumption.
• TU Ilmenau
• RWTH Aachen
• Institut f. Mikroelektronik- und Mechatronik-Systeme (IMMS), Erfurt
• Antennentechnik Bad Blankenburg GmbH
Duration of project
Feb. 2013 - Jan. 2017