Researchers develop 10-cm accuracy navigation system

Researchers develop 10-cm accuracy navigation system

Researchers at Delft University of Technology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and VSL have developed another positioning system that’s extra sturdy and correct than GPS, particularly in city environments.

The purpose of the venture — SuperGPS — was to develop another positioning system that makes use of the cellular telecommunications community as an alternative of satellites and has higher accuracy than GPS.

The working prototype that demonstrated this new cellular community infrastructure achieved an accuracy of 10 centimeters.

The new know-how is essential for implementing a spread of location-based functions, together with automated autos, quantum communications and next-generation cellular communication techniques.

Much of our very important infrastructure depends on GNSS. Yet techniques that depend on satellites have limitations and vulnerabilities. For instance, their radio indicators are weak when acquired on Earth, making correct positioning now not doable if the radio indicators are mirrored or blocked by buildings.

“We realized that with some cutting-edge innovations, the telecommunications network could be transformed into a very accurate alternative positioning system that is independent of GPS,” mentioned Jeroen Koelemeij from Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. “We succeeded and have successfully developed a system that can provide connectivity just like existing mobile and Wi-Fi networks do, as well as accurate positioning and time distribution like GPS.”

Photo: Delft University of Technology

Illustration: TU Delft / Stephan Timmers

One innovation is to attach the cellular community to a really correct atomic clock in order that it will probably broadcast completely timed messages for positioning, simply as GPS satellites do utilizing the atomic clocks they keep on board. These connections are made by means of the present fiber optic community.

“With these techniques, we can turn the network into a nationwide distributed atomic clock – with many new applications such as very accurate positioning through mobile networks,” mentioned Erik Dierikx, VSL. “With the hybrid optical-wireless system now we have now demonstrated, anybody can in precept have wi-fi entry to the nationwide time produced at VSL. It mainly varieties a particularly correct radio clock that’s good to at least one billionth of a second.”

The system additionally makes use of radio indicators with a a lot bigger bandwidth than is often used. “Buildings mirror radio indicators, which may confuse navigation gadgets. The massive bandwidth of our system helps to type out these complicated sign reflections, and permits greater positioning accuracy,” explained Gerard Janssen from Delft University of Technology. “At the same time, bandwidth within the radio spectrum is scarce and therefore expensive. We get around this by using a number of related small-bandwidth radio signals spread over a large virtual bandwidth. This has the advantage that only a small fraction of the virtual bandwidth is actually used and the signals can be very similar to those of mobile phones.”

The outcomes of the peer-reviewed analysis had been revealed in Nature.

Photo: TU Delft / Frank Auperlé

Photo: TU Delft / Frank Auperlé

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