Information Technology

Antenna, RF Combo Offer Centimeter Global Positioning

04 March 2014

Research institute IMEC (Leuven, Belgium) and Septentrio Satellite Navigation NV, also based in Leuven, have collaborated on the design of an integrated antenna and radio frequency front-end for positioning by satellite.

The unit is multi-frequency and accepts signals from all four satellite systems; GPS, Glonass, Beidou and Galilieo. Developed under a European Community collaborative research project called Handheld, the compact antenna is intended for high-precision location with accuracy as high as 1 centimeter.

The multi-frequency antenna complements a credit card-sized dual frequency GNSS receiver from Septentrio that provides centimeter accuracy at less than 500mW power consumption. This compares with earlier systems which made use of the United States' GPS alone and achieved an accuracy to within a few meters.

The GNSS (global navigation satellite system) radio frequency front-end is based on an established design from Septentrio which is characterized by the ability to avoid device self-interference with other radiation sources such as Bluetooth and WLAN radios, as well as other ambient intentional and non-intentional interference. IMEC said its antenna design simultaneously receives all GPS, Glonass and Galilieo bands and has uniform gain and phase coverage over the complete upper hemisphere while suppressing reflected signals from below or in the vicinity of the GNSS receiver.

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