A Portfolio Approach to NLOS and Multipath Mitigation in Dense Urban Areas

P.D. Groves, Z. Jiang, M. Rudi, P. Strode

Abstract: Non-line-of-sight (NLOS) reception and multipath interference are major causes of poor GNSS positioning accuracy in dense urban environments. They are commonly grouped together. However, both the mechanisms by which they cause position errors and many of the techniques for mitigating those errors are quite different [1]. For example, correlation-based multipath mitigation has no effect on the errors caused by NLOS reception. University College London (UCL) has investigated the performance of a number of multipath and/or NLOS mitigation techniques in dense urban areas, including C/N0-based solution weighting [2], advanced consistency checking [3], dual-polarization NLOS detection [4] and vector tracking [5]. In this paper, we present a new multipath detection technique based on comparing the measured C/N0 on multiple frequencies and also new dual-polarization results. Meanwhile, other researchers have demonstrated NLOS detection using a panoramic camera [6, 7] or 3D city model [8, 9] and detection of NLOS and multipath using an antenna array [10]. All of these techniques bring some improvement in positioning performance in urban environments, but none of them eliminate the effects of both NLOS reception and multipath interference completely. As the different techniques are largely complementary, best performance is obtained by using several of them in combination, a portfolio approach. This paper comprises three parts. The first presents a feasibility study on a new multipath detection technique using multi-frequency C/N0 measurements. Constructive multipath interference results in an increase in the measured C/N0, whereas destructive multipath interference results in a decrease. As the phase of a reflected signal with respect to its directly received counterpart depends on the wavelength, the multipath interference may be constructive on one frequency and destructive on another. Thus, by comparing the difference in measured C/N0 between two frequencies with what would normally be expected for that signal at that elevation angle, strong multipath interference may be detected. However, the converse is not true because, depending on the path delay, the phase of the multipath interference may also be consistent across the two frequencies. Consistency across three frequencies in the presence of multipath interference is much less likely than consistency across two. Therefore, by comparing C/N0 measured across three (or more) frequencies, the chance of detection is improved substantially, noting that reliability is less critical as part of a portfolio approach to multipath detection than for a stand-alone technique. Experimental results are presented demonstrating the potential of this approach using GPS and GLONASS data collected in Central London. The second part of the paper presents the results of the first multi-constellation test of the dual-polarization NLOS detection technique pioneered at UCL [4]. This separately correlates the right hand circularly polarized (RHCP) and left hand circularly polarized (LHCP) outputs of a dual-polarization antenna and differences the resulting C/N0 measurements, producing a result that is positive for directly received signals and negative for most NLOS signals. Data was collected at six different sites in Central London and NLOS reception of both GPS and GLONASS signals was detected. Position solutions with the NLOS signals removed are compared with the corresponding all-satellite solutions. The final part of the paper addresses the portfolio approach to NLOS and multipath mitigation. Each technique is assessed qualitatively for its ease of implementation and its efficiency at detecting or directly mitigating both NLOS reception and multipath mitigation. A compatibility matrix is then presented showing which techniques may be combined without conflict. Suitable portfolios are then proposed both for professional-grade and for consumer-grade user equipment. Most of this work forms part of the Innovative Navigation using new GNSS Signals with Hybridised Technologies (INSIGHT) program. INSIGHT (www.insight-gnss.org) is a collaborative research project funded by the UK’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to exploit the new GNSS signals. It is being undertaken by a consortium of UCL, Imperial College London, the University of Nottingham, the University of Westminster, and eight industrial groups. The authors would also like to thank Novatel for the loan a pair of multi-constellation GNSS receivers for the dual-polarization experiments. References [1] Groves, P. D., Principles of GNSS, inertial, and multi-sensor integrated navigation systems, Second Edition, Artech House, 2013. [2] Jiang, Z., P. Groves, W. Y. Ochieng, S. Feng, C. D. Milner, and P. G. Mattos, “Multi-Constellation GNSS Multipath Mitigation Using Consistency Checking,” Proc. ION GNSS 2011. [3] Jiang, Z., and P. Groves, “GNSS NLOS and Multipath Error Mitigation using Advanced Multi-Constellation Consistency Checking with Height Aiding,” Proc. ION GNSS 2012. [4] Jiang, Z., and P. D. Groves, “NLOS GPS Signal Detection Using A Dual-Polarisation Antenna,” GPS Solutions, 2012, DOI: 10.1007/s10291-012-0305-5. [5] Hsu, L.-T., P. D. Groves, and S.-S. Jan, “Assessment of the Multipath Mitigation Effect of Vector Tracking in an Urban Environment,” Proc ION Pacific PNT, 2013. [6] Marais, J., M. Berbineau, and M. Heddebaut, “Land Mobile GNSS Availability and Multipath Evaluation Tool,” IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology, Vol. 54, No. 5, 2005, pp. 1697-1704. [7] Meguro, J., et al., “GPS Multipath Mitigation for Urban Area Using Omnidirectional Infrared Camera,” IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems, Vol. 10, No. 1, 2009, pp. 22-30. [8] Obst, M., S. Bauer, and G. Wanielik, “Urban Multipath Detection and mitigation with Dynamic 3D Maps for Reliable Land Vehicle Localization,” Proc. IEEE/ION PLANS 2012. [9] Peyraud, S., et al., “About Non-Line-Of-Sight Satellite Detection and Exclusion in a 3D Map-Aided Localization Algorithm,” Sensors, Vol. 13, 2013, pp. 829-847. [10] Keshvadi, M. H., A. Broumandan, and G. Lachapelle, “Analysis of GNSS Beamforming and Angle of Arrival Estimation in Multipath Environments," Proc ION ITM, San Diego, CA, January 2011, pp. 427-435.
Published in: Proceedings of the 26th International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of The Institute of Navigation (ION GNSS+ 2013)
September 16 - 20, 2013
Nashville Convention Center, Nashville, Tennessee
Nashville, TN
Pages: 3231 - 3247
Cite this article: Groves, P.D., Jiang, Z., Rudi, M., Strode, P., "A Portfolio Approach to NLOS and Multipath Mitigation in Dense Urban Areas," Proceedings of the 26th International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of The Institute of Navigation (ION GNSS+ 2013), Nashville, TN, September 2013, pp. 3231-3247.
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