Centimeter-Accurate UAV Navigation With Cellular Signals

Joe J. Khalife, Souradeep Bhattacharya, and Zak M. Kassas

Peer Reviewed

Abstract: This paper proposes a framework for unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) navigation using carrier phase differential cellular (CD-cellular) measurements. The framework requires no prior knowledge of the UAV’s position and achieves centimeter-level position accuracy. A batch weighted nonlinear least-squares estimator is developed to solve for the integer ambiguities and an extended Kalman filter is formulated to initialize the batch estimator. Monte Carlo simulations are presented to characterize the performance of the proposed framework as a function of the total number of hearable cellular base transceiver stations (BTSs) and the size of the batch estimator. Experimental results are presented demonstrating a UAV navigating exclusively using the proposed framework over a 1.72 km trajectory completed in 3 minutes with 62.11 cm root mean-square error (RMSE).
Published in: Proceedings of the 31st International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of The Institute of Navigation (ION GNSS+ 2018)
September 24 - 28, 2018
Hyatt Regency Miami
Miami, Florida
Pages: 2321 - 2331
Cite this article: Khalife, Joe J., Bhattacharya, Souradeep, Kassas, Zak M., "Centimeter-Accurate UAV Navigation With Cellular Signals," Proceedings of the 31st International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of The Institute of Navigation (ION GNSS+ 2018), Miami, Florida, September 2018, pp. 2321-2331. https://doi.org/10.33012/2018.16105
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