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International cooperation and technology transfer
Fras, Mojca Kosmatin

R. Cefalo *, R. Pagurut *, J. Plasil °, T. Sluga *
* Department of Civil Engineering, University of Trieste, Italy
° Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Czech Technical University, Praha
Commission VI, Working Group 3
KEY WORDS: DGPS, RTCM, LW transmission, FM transmission.
Several radio sources generating RTCM corrections are available in the CEI area, even without a full coverage. Some of them are
simultaneously present in some areas, thus allowing static and kinematic analyses of accuracy and continuity. Our intent was to test
some different RTCM correction sources received in one place, in order to compare the different accuracy of the systems. All this, in
view of detecting one or more RTCM correction systems able to give satisfatorily accurate results with a full coverage on the CEI
area. The considered DGPS radiodiffusion methods are two Low Frequency transmitted signals, i.e. ALF, and LF signal from
Podebrady (Prague), and one FM transmitted signal: DARC.
This paper reports the adopted techniques and the detailed results of some experiments performed together by different components
of the CEI Working Group on Satellite Navigation Systems.
At least the following DGPS radiodiffusion methods are
available in the CEI area, some on a large area, others only
locally, giving different positioning accuracy greatly due to the
distance from the correction source:
ALF (Accurate Positioning by Low Frequency)
operated by Bundesamt fuer Cartographie und Geodesie (BKG)
in Frankfurt am Main;
LF transmitter in Podebrady, a small town 50 km east
of Prague, which transmits DGPS corrections generated in the
Czech Technical University (CTU) Reference Station, in
MARINE RADIOBEACON: Some years ago, an
experimental emission from Venice, Punta Maestra by Italian
Navy and Codevintec Italiana, Milan, was successfully
experimented with a car trajectory from the top of the Apennine
Highway to Trieste;
RDS (Radio Data System): It should be soon available
for experiments in the Italian eastern highways;
DARC (Data Radio Channel)/Swift (System for
Wireless Infotainment Forwarding and Télédistribution) - the
RTCM and RTK emission is a service by ORF (Österreichische
Rundfunk) on the FM band;
DAB (Digital Audio Broadcasting), about 250 MHz:
Bavaria, province of Bozen (RAI and RAS);
MOBILE TELEPHONES: Experiments were done
with TACS, showing difficulties in maintaining the connection.
These systems are very useful for research since there is no
need of transmission licence, but the number of users is limited.
RACAL: several experiments on the highways
showed the feasibility of the method on open areas. The method
is less feasible in urban areas, due to building covering;
OMNISTAR: Same as RACAL; and
EGNOS (European Geostationary Overlay Service):
Same as RACAL.
The Czech Technical University (CTU) Reference Station is
based on three GPS receivers:
1. Leica MX9400R receiver
2. Trimble GPS Pathfinder Community Base Station
3. Novatel GPSCard 951R in 486 PC computer
The Leica receiver is the core of the reference station and gives
corrections which are disseminated wireless. The Trimble
receiver generates corrections for postprocessing. It also backs
up Leica. The Novatel Card is the first - and by now rather
obsolete - receiver that backs up both receivers mentioned
Corrections are broadcast with one-second step in real time by
1) VHFR(B)DS channel
2) LF channel
Correction Dissemination by VHF RDS Channel cover Prague
and its near surroundings.
The data of pseudorange measurements made by Leica receiver
modulate an LF transmitter in Podebrady (Fig. 1) - a small town
50 km east of Prague. The transmitter works on 111.8 kHz
frequency, with a 500 bps bit rate. The transmitter output power
is 80 kW. It is backed up by a 5 kW standby transmitter.
Corrections are placed into 60 bit frames. FEC is provided by
CRC code (60,41).
The CTU designed and manufactured receivers for both LF and
VHF channels. They receive signals, prove message parity, and
ignore frames with detected errors. At receiver output, there are
corrections in RTCM 104 format.
LF signal coverage is shown in Fig. 2. It covers a large share of
Central Europe. Flags mark the places where corrections were
tested, even if by different GPS receivers.
It was noticed that the accuracy of position determination first
and foremost depends on the quality of the GPS receiver.
2D accuracy (95%) - approximately 0.76 m - was obtained in
Prague and its surroundings.
Deutsche Telecomm did experiments on the Baltic coast, and
reported that accuracy was about 6 meters.