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18 September 2018 A GNSS receiver for small-sats enabling precision POD, radio occultations, and reflections
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A low cost, low power, and low mass GNSS receiver (called Cion) has been developed and is currently flying on the CICERO cubesats. The receiver was designed in less than a year by JPL for Tyvak and GeoOptics for use in the GeoOptics CICERO constellation and leverages 25 years of JPL GNSS receiver design experience. Cion uses a commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) computer along with existing space qualified RF down-converters, software, and firmware to produce atmospheric Radio Occultation (RO) data. By combining a FPGA with dual core ARM processor and an embedded system controller, the Xilinx Zynq processor is an enabling technology that provides a customizable digital signal processing platform integrated into the computer (System on a chip) and enables off-the-shelf hardware to become the main engine behind this software defined radio. Using Linux for the on-board computer allows for fast development times and liberal use of existing open source software libraries. The parts of the receiver that require real-time implementation are performed in the Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA), which can also be reprogrammed in flight. While the Zynq is not rad hard, the silicon on insulator (SOI) technology is rad tolerant 'by accident', allowing for its use in many space-based applications. Early results show that the Cion is working as designed, has demonstrated the first known GLONASS occultations, and obtains high quality atmospheric profiles with excellent lower troposphere penetration (near Earth’s surface).
Conference Presentation
© (2018) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Garth Franklin, Stephan Esterhuizen, Chad Galley, Byron Iijima, Kameron Larsen, Myron Lee, Jehhal Liu, Thomas Meehan, and Larry Young "A GNSS receiver for small-sats enabling precision POD, radio occultations, and reflections", Proc. SPIE 10769, CubeSats and NanoSats for Remote Sensing II, 1076905 (18 September 2018);


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