Real-time kinematic positioning of LEO satellites using a single-frequency GPS receiver [IMA]

Due to their low cost and low power consumption, single-frequency GPS receivers are considered suitable for low-cost space applications such as small satellite missions. Recently, requirements have emerged for real-time accurate orbit determination at sub-meter level in order to carry out onboard geocoding of high-resolution imagery, open-loop operation of altimeters and radio occultation. This study proposes an improved real-time kinematic positioning method for LEO satellites using single-frequency receivers. The C/A code and L1 phase are combined to eliminate ionospheric effects. The epoch-differenced carrier phase measurements are utilized to acquire receiver position changes which are further used to smooth the absolute positions. A kinematic Kalman filter is developed to implement kinematic orbit determination. Actual flight data from China small satellite SJ-9A are used to test the navigation performance. Results show that the proposed method outperforms traditional kinematic positioning method in terms of accuracy. A 3D position accuracy of 0.72 m and 0.79 m has been achieved using the predicted portion of IGS ultra-rapid products and broadcast ephemerides, respectively.

Read this paper on arXiv…

P. Chen, J. Zhang and X. Sun
Wed, 16 Nov 16

Comments: 27 pages, 8 figures, ready for publication in GPS Solutions