A New Independent GPS-Free System for Geo-Referencing from Space


A new system’s geo-referencing from space is entirely free from any GNSS (GPS or equivalent) systems. The system addresses to various strategic and economic applications such as in remote clock synchronism, aircraft and balloon navigation, missile and smart bombs tracking, satellite orbital determination and remote target geo-positioning. The new geometry concept corresponds to an “inverted GPS” configuration, utilizing four ground-based reference stations, synchronized in time, installed at well known geodesic coordinates and a repeater in space, carried by an aircraft, balloon, satellite, etc. Signal transmitted by one of the reference bases is retransmitted by the transponder, received back by the four bases, producing four ranging measurements which are corrected for the time delays undergone in every retransmission. A minimization function was derived to compare the repeater’s positions referred to at least two groups of three reference bases, to correct for the signal transit time at the repeater and propagation delays, and consequently to provide the accurate repeater position for each time interaction. Once the repeater’s coordinates are known, the other determinations and applications become straightforward. The system solving algorithm and process performance has been demonstrated by simulations adopting a practical example with the transponder carried by an aircraft moving over bases and a target on the ground. Effects produced by reference clock synchronism uncertainties at the four bases on the measurements are reviewed.

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Kaufmann, P. , L. Kaufmann, P. , V. D. Pamboukian, S. and Vilhena de Moraes, R. (2014) A New Independent GPS-Free System for Geo-Referencing from Space. Positioning, 5, 37-45. doi: 10.4236/pos.2014.52005.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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