Design of OFDM Navigation Signal and Receiver for Accurate Ranging Estimation in a Power-Limited CubeSat Transmitter

Yuxin He, Sijia Li, Bing Xu

Peer Reviewed

Abstract: Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM), well-established in cellular fifth-generation (5G) communication, is emerging as a navigation signal for CubeSats. Yet, CubeSats’ limited transmit power complicates OFDM synchronization, potentially skewing distance measurements. This article introduces a differentially coherent accumulation (DCA) algorithm for utilizing the Synchronization Signal (SS) within the SS and Physical Broadcast Channel (PBCH) block (SSB). This approach aims to improve the sensitivity and accuracy of OFDM acquisition, enabling precise time of arrival (TOA) estimation even under the low signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) conditions characteristic of long-distance CubeSat signal transmissions. Additionally, the article applies a near-optimal likelihood ratio test (NOLRT) detector to resolve integer ambiguity inherent induced from the DCA algorithm, which prevents additional bias in TOA estimation. Numerical simulations validate the effectiveness of the proposed weak OFDM acquisition algorithm with the pre-defined SSB structure, demonstrating a significant reduction in ranging error. Specifically, the simulations achieved a standard deviation of 2.75 meters in ranging error at a SNR of -20 dB, utilizing a SSB comprising 15 times repeated ZC sequences.
Published in: Proceedings of the 2024 International Technical Meeting of The Institute of Navigation
January 23 - 25, 2024
Hyatt Regency Long Beach
Long Beach, California
Pages: 712 - 722
Cite this article: He, Yuxin, Li, Sijia, Xu, Bing, "Design of OFDM Navigation Signal and Receiver for Accurate Ranging Estimation in a Power-Limited CubeSat Transmitter," Proceedings of the 2024 International Technical Meeting of The Institute of Navigation, Long Beach, California, January 2024, pp. 712-722. https://doi.org/10.33012/2024.19511
Full Paper: ION Members/Non-Members: 1 Download Credit
Sign In