Low cost GNSS attitude and navigation system with inertial MEMS aiding
Background & Objectives
LOGAM will design and develop an ultra low-cost attitude determination and navigation system based on non-dedicated mass market GNSS receivers and antennas and aided by MEMS inertial sensors. Making use of the complementarities of GNSS and INS derived measurements, the GNSS/INS integrated approach yields navigation solutions with improved performance. A functional prototype will be produced, demonstrating that the targeted system characteristics suit a great number of present and future applications.
Why this project is important for EGNOS/GSA/SatNav?
Accuracy in attitude determination and navigation at low cost is needed in various real-time applications, such as vehicle tracking and unmanned aerial vehicles. This is the objective of the LOGAM system.
The main goal of LOGAM is the design and development of an ultra low-cost attitude determination and navigation system based primarily on non-dedicated mass market GNSS receivers and antennas, and aided by MEMS inertial sensors. The following gaps are to be filled:
- No low-cost GNSS-based attitude determination systems available in the market;
- Size and weight reduction over existing platforms;
- Development of a methodology for automated antenna calibration for this application.
This can be translated into the following specific technical goals:
- Development of a GNSS-based autonomous attitude determination system relying on non-dedicated GNSS receivers;
- Accurate three-axis solution even in static or low speed conditions (superior to existing platforms based on single GNSS receiver + IMU);
- Research on the use of low-cost commercial grade GNSS antennas for precise phase centre applications;
- Size and weight reduction over available GNSS/INS solutions;
- Modularity and flexibility;
- Integration and demonstration on a real application (UAV).
How does it work?
The project has been divided into seven work packages, five of them technology related, one for dissemination and exploitation, and one for project management. Five main steps can be identified:
- System requirement definition, including technology gap analysis;
- Building blocks study, development and characterization;
- Hardware-Software prototyping and testing;
- Integration and validation, in a real end-to-end system prototype;
- Evaluation and dissemination.
The LOGAM project is just the first step in a complete product realization and commercialization process. The next steps are directly related to the development of a real product based on the prototype.
Work performed & results
The consortium is focused on producing a functional prototype capable of demonstrating the targeted system characteristics fitting with a great number of present and future applications. In order to provide the project with tangible and marketable results, a first end-to-end application for the system has been identified (and will be built) in the small unmanned aerial vehicle guidance, navigation and control applications domain where minimal cost, weight and power consumption are critical. The system will be integrated in a small rotary wings UAS to provide data for automatic attitude and position control.
A functional system integrating all the hardware and software modules will be produced, capable of demonstrating the full potentiality of the application, enabling practical testing and validation in a real application scenario.