An Adaptive INS-Aided PLL Tracking Method for GNSS Receivers in Harsh Environments.

Research paper by Li L Cong, Xin X Li, Tian T Jin, Song S Yue, Rui R Xue

Indexed on: 26 Jan '16Published on: 26 Jan '16Published in: Sensors (Basel, Switzerland)


As the weak link in global navigation satellite system (GNSS) signal processing, the phase-locked loop (PLL) is easily influenced with frequent cycle slips and loss of lock as a result of higher vehicle dynamics and lower signal-to-noise ratios. With inertial navigation system (INS) aid, PLLs' tracking performance can be improved. However, for harsh environments with high dynamics and signal attenuation, the traditional INS-aided PLL with fixed loop parameters has some limitations to improve the tracking adaptability. In this paper, an adaptive INS-aided PLL capable of adjusting its noise bandwidth and coherent integration time has been proposed. Through theoretical analysis, the relation between INS-aided PLL phase tracking error and carrier to noise density ratio (C/N₀), vehicle dynamics, aiding information update time, noise bandwidth, and coherent integration time has been built. The relation formulae are used to choose the optimal integration time and bandwidth for a given application under the minimum tracking error criterion. Software and hardware simulation results verify the correctness of the theoretical analysis, and demonstrate that the adaptive tracking method can effectively improve the PLL tracking ability and integrated GNSS/INS navigation performance. For harsh environments, the tracking sensitivity is increased by 3 to 5 dB, velocity errors are decreased by 36% to 50% and position errors are decreased by 6% to 24% when compared with other INS-aided PLL methods.