INTEGRATED SATELLITE NAVIGATION AND STRAPDOWN ATTITUDE AND HEADING REFERENCES FOR CIVIL AIR CARRIERS

John J. Hopkins

Peer Reviewed

Abstract: The air carrier avionics arena is witnessing some interesting evolutionary developments in flight guidance. Among these are the strapdown attitude and heading reference system, the ring laser gyro inertial navigator and the Omega/VLF navigator. Passive navigation systems are now available which emulate VOR/DME. However, there is another development on the horizon which could be revolutionary. It is the Global Positioning System, which has the potential to overtake many of the developments now becoming available. This paper addresses the design and capability of an integrated GPS/strapdown AHRS as a replacement for the pure inertial navigator and other sensors now widely used by the air carriers. This integrated system simultaneously exhibits the excellent verticality of a dynamically erected AHRS and the outstanding po- sition and velocity accuracy of the satellite navigator. The splendid velocity accuracy of GPS, even with the C/A code and controlled position accuracy, provides the key link to the potential of the integrated system. The system does not require external air speed or heading but can use encoded barometric altitude. As an output the system can provide a comprehensive slate of vehicle data for the flight management, flight control and flight instrument systems. This single system will outperform the pure inertial navigator at substantially less acquisition and maintenance cost. The potential for global and continuous position is not available at any price. The system can also be fitted with the same kind of VOR/DME emulation now appearing in other passive navigators. Unprecedented capability and economy in air carrier operations are in the offing in this new generation of flight guidance avionics.
Published in: NAVIGATION, Journal of the Institute of Navigation, Volume 28, Number 3
Pages: 189 - 198
Cite this article: Hopkins, John J., "INTEGRATED SATELLITE NAVIGATION AND STRAPDOWN ATTITUDE AND HEADING REFERENCES FOR CIVIL AIR CARRIERS", NAVIGATION, Journal of The Institute of Navigation, Vol. 28, No. 3, Fall 1981, pp. 189-198.
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