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Comparative study of high-performance GPS receiving antenna designs

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5 Author(s)
N. Padros ; Dept. of Electr. Eng., Utah Univ., Salt Lake City, UT, USA ; J. I. Ortigosa ; J. Baker ; M. F. Iskander
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The FAA decision allowing the use of the global positioning system (GPS) as a radio navigation and landing help system in the United States commercial airports boosts the need for a high-performance GPS receiver which provides the demanded precision. The design of the receiving antenna is one of the most important parts in the design process, as it has to face significant challenges including uniform coverage of all satellites and the rejection of the multipath signals. The rejection of the multipath signals is accomplished by specifying restrictive criteria to the GPS antenna. This includes a high rejection of the cross-polarized signals and a radiation pattern with a sharp slope for low-elevation angles; that is, near the horizon. The feasibility of using different types of antennas to satisfy restrictive criteria such as dual-frequency coverage (L1 and L2 frequencies), -15 dB cross-polarization rejection, and a beamwidth of more than 130° is discussed. The antenna designs examined in this study include patch antennas, helical antennas, and conical spiral antennas. Two different receiver designs were also examined including a single-antenna system with a hemispherical coverage and an antenna array which may provide independent sectoral coverage or the desired beamwidth. It is shown that a design based on a conical spiral antenna backed with absorbing material may be used to satisfy all the desired specifications. This result was confirmed experimentally

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation  (Volume:45 ,  Issue: 4 )