Comparison of Neural Network Architectures for Simultaneous Tracking and Navigation with LEO Satellites

Sharbel E. Kozhaya , Jamil A. Haidar-Ahmad, Ali A. Abdallah, Zaher M. Kassas, and Samer S. Saab

Abstract: Machine learning (ML) frameworks are investigated for use in simultaneous tracking and navigation (STAN) with low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites. STAN is a navigation paradigm that utilizes specialized LEO receivers to extract navigation observables (e.g., pseudorange and Doppler) from LEO satellite signals. Two neural network architectures are compared: Feed Forward Neural Network (FFNN) and Recurrent Neural Network (RNN). Additionally, two ML-based orbit determination frameworks are compared: ephemeris propagation and residual error propagation. The objective of the comparison is to select an approach with the lowest open-loop propagation error as well as computational cost. Based on simulation results, a nonlinear autoregressive neural network with exogenous inputs (NARX) embedded within the residual error modeling framework is selected as the best ML approach among the compared candidates. Experimental results are presented demonstrating a ground vehicle navigating for a total of 258 seconds, while receiving signals from two Orbcomm LEO satellites. Global navigation satellite system (GNSS) signals were artificially cut off for the last 30 seconds, during which the vehicle traversed a trajectory of 871 m. Two navigation frameworks are compared to estimate the vehicle’s trajectory: (i) LEO signal-aided inertial navigation system (INS) STAN framework using Simplified General Perturbation (SGP4) as its propagator and (ii) the proposed LEO signal-aided INS STAN framework using ML as its propagator. The STAN with SGP4 achieved a three-dimensional (3-D) position root-mean squared error (RMSE) of 30 m. In contrast, the proposed STAN with SGP4+NARX framework achieved a 3-D position RMSE of 3.6 m.
Published in: Proceedings of the 34th International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of The Institute of Navigation (ION GNSS+ 2021)
September 20 - 24, 2021
Union Station Hotel
St. Louis, Missouri
Pages: 2507 - 2520
Cite this article: Kozhaya, Sharbel E., Haidar-Ahmad, Jamil A., Abdallah, Ali A., Kassas, Zaher M., Saab, Samer S., "Comparison of Neural Network Architectures for Simultaneous Tracking and Navigation with LEO Satellites," Proceedings of the 34th International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of The Institute of Navigation (ION GNSS+ 2021), St. Louis, Missouri, September 2021, pp. 2507-2520.
https://doi.org/10.33012/2021.18110
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