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Multipath-Resistant Time of Arrival Estimation for Satellite Positioning

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Satellite positioning systems, such as GPS or the future European system Galileo, employ direct-sequence spread-spectrum signals. The positioning accuracy is strongly affected by the quality of the pseudo range measurements. These measurements necessitate code and carrier synchronization of the received signal with the internally generated reference signals. In this type of systems one major error source is the multipath phenomenon, which results in a sum of delayed and weighted copies of the original signal to be present at the receiver input. This can result in a systematic error of the code tracking loop resulting in range errors in the order of several tens of meters.

In this paper we propose an extension of the standard code tracking loop capable of estimating the parameters of the line-of-sight (LOS) signal and separating the LOS from the reflected signal portions. It is based on an analysis of the cross correlation of the received signal with a locally generated code sequence in the vicinity of the tracking point of a Delay-Locked Loop (DLL). For this reason, we call this method Cross Correlation Function (CCF)–Analysis. The proposed method achieves considerably more accurate estimates than a DLL. Its performance is comparable to the Multipath Estimating Delay-Locked Loop (MEDLL) which is considered to be the best method for reducing multipath–induced errors, so far. However, the computational complexity of the CCF–Analysis is by a factor of three smaller compared to the MEDLL. Extensive simulations have been conducted for the proposed method and the MEDLL in order to assess the robustness of the two approaches under various signal constellations.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Paderborn, Department of Communications Engineering, Pohlweg 47-49, D-33098 Paderborn, Germany.

Publication date: 2004-01-01

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