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TECHNIQUES FOR GNSS NAVIGATION AT HIGH ORBITS (GEO/GTO/HEO) - EXPRO PLUS

ESA Open Invitation To Tender AO8349
Open Date: 07/07/2015
Closing Date: 15/09/2015

Status: ISSUED
Reference Nr.: 15.1ET.08
Prog. Ref.: TRP
Budget Ref.: E/0901-01 - TRP
Special Prov.: BE+DK+FR+DE+IT+NL+ES+SE+CH+GB+IE+AT+NO+FI+PT+GR+LU+CZ+RO+PL
Tender Type: C
Price Range: 200-500 KEURO
Establishment: ESTEC
Directorate: Directorate of Technical & Quality Manag
Department: Electrical Engineering Department
Division: RF Payload Systems Division
Contract Officer: Fabrizi, Lavinia
Last Update Date: 07/07/2015
Update Reason: Tender issue

Study and development of the techniques (signal processing and navigation processing) for GNSS (GPS and Galileo) navigation at GEO/HEO/GTO and higher orbits. The selected techniques will be demonstrated in lab conditions by a suitable hardware/software Proof-of-Concept equipment. Recently, the feasibility of using GPS receivers for high orbits has been demonstrated. However, this feasibility study has also shown some significant short comings. The most important one being the low sensitivity (around 30 dBHz) of the current state-of-the-art receivers. This has lead to a lack of usable satellites (only between 2 to 5) for PVT computation and the need touse orbit propagators during long time windows. This translates into a degradation of the navigation performance especially after manoeuvres. The techniques proposed under this activity are based on the ones being used on the Earth for GNSS indoor navigation, mainly by using high sensitivity signal processing algorithms and by using aiding data from other sensors (for example long coherent integration using FFT techniques, ultra-tight coupling kalman filter, vector tracking). Demonstration will be done in the lab environments using the ESA GNSS RF signal simulator. This activity is a continuation of the feasibility study performed in the last year concerning the use of GNSS receivers for high orbits (see reference below). And the indoor positioning activities (DINGPOS) that developed high sensitivity receiver techniques for urban environments (see reference below). The techniques developed in DINGPOS demonstrated the possibility to track very weak GNSS signals at C/No of 10-15 dBHz, i.e. 30 dBs below the nominal values. These techniques are very interesting for GNSS navigation at high orbits and it is expected that the navigation performance will improve dramatically by applying them (the number of usable satellites is expected to raise to 4 to 7).

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