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Wireless networks based on high-altitude platforms for the provision of integrated navigation/communication services

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4 Author(s)
D. Avagnina ; Politecnio di Torino, Italy ; F. Dovis ; A. Ghiglione ; P. Mulassano

Provision of telecommunication services by means of high-altitude platforms (HAPs) is becoming a relevant topic of interest for the research activities on future-generation systems. Mobility on demand, large coverage, and payload reconfigurability are only some examples of the expected benefits for personal communication systems based on the use of such platforms. The research regarding the use of HAPs for communications has so far neglected that they are also a privileged infrastructure for the provision of navigation and positioning services. They can act as augmentation infrastructures for global navigation satellite systems such as GPS and the future Galileo, easily performing direction of arrival estimation thanks to their high position, collecting and broadcasting position information. Despite these interesting services, the real added value is in the fact that their payload can easily integrate both communication and navigation services, with mutual benefits for both systems. The scope of this article is to discuss the feasibility of integrating HAPs with communication networks (e.g., UMTS) and navigation systems, providing an overview of different system aspects (payload, user segment)

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IEEE Communications Magazine  (Volume:40 ,  Issue: 2 )