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Sensors 2019, 19(6), 1369;

A Two-Stage Kalman Filter-Based Carrier Tracking Loop for Weak GNSS Signals

School of Electronic and Information Engineering, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, China
State Grid Information and Telecommunication Branch, Beijing 100761, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 February 2019 / Revised: 10 March 2019 / Accepted: 15 March 2019 / Published: 19 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Remote Sensors)
PDF [4412 KB, uploaded 19 March 2019]


For global navigation satellite system receivers, Kalman filter (KF)-based tracking loops show remarkable advantages in terms of tracking sensitivity and robustness compared with conventional tracking loops. However, to improve the tracking sensitivity further, increasing the coherent integration time is necessary, but it is typically limited by the navigation data bit sign transition. Moreover, for standard KF-based tracking receivers, the KF parameters are initialized by the acquired results. However, especially under weak signal conditions, the acquired results have frequency errors that are too large for KF-based tracking to converge rapidly to a steady state. To solve these problems, a two-stage KF-based tracking architecture is proposed to track weaker signals and achieve faster convergence. In the first stage, coarse tracking refines the acquired results and achieves bit synchronization. Then, in the second stage, fine tracking initializes the KF-based tracking by using the coarse tracking results and extends the coherent integration time without the bit sign transition limitation. This architecture not only utilizes the self-tuning technique of the KF to improve the tracking sensitivity, but also adopts the two-stage to reduce the convergence time of the KF-based tracking. Simulation results demonstrate that the proposed method outperforms conventional tracking techniques in terms of tracking sensitivity. Furthermore, the proposed method is compared with the standard KF-based tracking approach, proving that the proposed method converges more rapidly. View Full-Text
Keywords: GNSS carrier tracking; high sensitivity; Kalman filter; reduce convergence time GNSS carrier tracking; high sensitivity; Kalman filter; reduce convergence time

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Cheng, Y.; Chang, Q.; Wang, H.; Li, X. A Two-Stage Kalman Filter-Based Carrier Tracking Loop for Weak GNSS Signals. Sensors 2019, 19, 1369.

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