Robust satellite navigation receiver

Paul Boughton

Airbus Defence and Space is to develop a new robust GNSS satellite navigation receiver using reconfigurable technology from Lime Microsystems.

Combining a highly integrated Field Programmable RF (FPRF) solution based on Lime’s technology and an innovative system implementation provided by Airbus D&S will provide a high performance GNSS product with the potential for integration with other wireless capabilities.

An FPRF chip such as Lime’s third generation LMS8001 reconfigures to handle different frequencies from 100kHz to 12GHz in one chip with 120MHz resolution. This would otherwise require many separate front end chips.

This provides more flexibility for the GNSS receiver to access different frequencies broadcast from the satellites. This can be used to improve the accuracy of navigation or deliver more accurate timing signals to a wide range of systems such as cellular phone network infrastructure.

Lime FPRF transceiver matches our rigorous technical performance requirements and we are looking forward to be working alongside Lime in this strategic engagement,” said Mike Turner from Airbus D&S.

The FPRF software configurable chips can run any mobile standard and any mobile frequency and have been used in systems such as mobile base stations and small cells, software defined radio (SDR) platforms, indoor navigation and machine-to-machine communication systems.

Cambridge Consultants has used the first generation Lime device, the 1.5W LMS6002D, along with a baseband chip from Intel, to build a cellular basestation board that has been fitted to an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or ‘drone’ that can receive calls in the sky.