(Applications in Satellite Navigation – Galileo – 2017)
Type of action: IA (Innovation action)
Duration: 24 months
Starting date: November 16, 2017
The use of GNSS in space applications enables the main following applications: (a) navigation in space, (b) timing
determination (c) precise orbit determination (d) attitude determination.
Most of future space missions (LEO, MEO, GEO/IGSO orbits, interplanetary missions and launchers) are considering to
adopt GNSS as baseline requirements for orbit determination or vehicle position and time estimation in space. In parallel,
cost/size reduction, flexibility and the need to increase security are key requirements to sustain the evolution of the satellite
business towards mega constellations and small satellites.
ENSPACE (Enhanced Navigation in Space) captures this needs developing an innovative software application for enhanced
space navigation, positioning and time. The aim is to: (a) become a reference product for low cost, secure and flexible space
navigation, positioning and time, and (b) enable existing high grade space applications to enhance GNSS security.
ENSPACE has the advantage to be multi application and multi mission, low cost, secure and robust, fully Software.
The use of Galileo, and particularly the features of authentication, guarantees highly accurate positioning and robust
navigation, not feasible so far with current GNSS.
ENSPACE will be the future concept of space navigation and will test all possibilities of Galileo beyond the limits of the
original service design.
The ENSPACE project targets different mission contexts:
- LEO Satellites for Communication, Broadband Internet Services and Earth Observation Missions
- MEO Satellites for Navigation
- GEO Satellites for Broadband TV and Communications
- Interplanetary Missions such as Satellites orbiting around the Moon or Mars
This will be achieved with the development of an innovative Space GNSS platform with the following advanced features:
- Configurability for Multi Applications and Multi Missions: the GNSS board will be designed and developed in order to support different Enhanced GNSS applications. Moreover the objective is to have a single solution that can become a standard for all future missions that require enhanced navigation, including high availability, robustness and security;
- Galileo Capability: it has already been demonstrated in ESA and NASA studies that Galileo can provide major enhancements in terms of availability, accuracy and robustness of PNT in space (use of multi-frequency, pilot codes, etc). Navigation using Galileo can be achieved where not possible before, such as in the interplanetary missions or space missions where GPS only signals would not be sufficient;
- Software Defined Radio (SDR) Technology: this will increase the flexibility and in space programmability. Moreover SDR can reduce the costs, volume, weight and energy consumption;
- Support of Snapshot Processing: satellite and ground based Snapshot-positioning methods and assisted positioning will provide great advantages in Space. Such methods, currently used in LBS applications, can ensure energy saving and optimization of the performances. Moreover Snapshot processing is configurable, flexible and adaptable to different satellite operator needs.
- Support for Authentication: Galileo OS and CS authentication and of receiver based antispoofing techniques will be an asset for the future threats in space.
- Low Cost Solution and Use of COTS: use of low cost COTS is an emerging trend in space. Indeed, budget constraints, demand for inexpensive small satellites, and other issues are forcing space-platform designers to consider using COTS components for space, but COTS.
The project activity would benefit several possible applications, such as:
- Onboard Position and Time: direct, real-time solution for position, velocity, and time using pseudoranges (and possibly Doppler and carrier phase).
- Precise Orbit Determination: batch or filter-smoother processing of pseudoranges and carrier phase measurements with improved GNSS orbits and clocks or ground station data
- Attitude Determination: single antenna (SNR-based) or multiple antennas (phase-based) on the vehicle.
- Formation Flying, Rendezvous, and Docking: relative positioning of two or more vehicles, possibly in real-time for autonomous control.
- Remote Sensing: occulted and reflected GNSS signals used to observe ionosphere, atmosphere, and Earth surface.
- Scientific Applications: collection of GNSS measurements that can be used to reconstitute the characteristics of the medium travelled through by the signal: ionosphere and troposphere.
- Tracking of Launchers or Reentering Spacecraft: tracking of the launch and early-orbit phases of rockets or re-entering spacecraft, even to the point of autonomous landing.
In particular, the main ENSPACE software product will be:
- Enhanced GNSS Navigation,
- Enhanced GNSS Precise Orbit Determination,
- Enhanced GNSS Timing,
- Enhanced GNSS Attitude,
- Security and Authentication functions.