Hexagon Demonstrates GNSS Correction Technology for Autonomous Driving

Published: 03 Jul 2018 | Author: Mike Rees

Ligado and Hexagon autonomous driving

Hexagon has announced that its Positioning Intelligence division has successfully deployed TerraStar X Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) correction technology, which enables instant lane-level accuracy, ideal for autonomous automotive planning programs. In partnership with Ligado Networks, Hexagon demonstrated delivery of TerraStar X technology over both satellite and cellular networks to position vehicles with 5-centimetre (2-inch) accuracy in under a minute. Combining TerraStar X technology with multiple delivery channels is a significant step towards the future of Autonomous X, where cars, UAVs, industrial vehicles, trains, and more will operate safely, securely, reliably, and efficiently.

TerraStar X technology is built on the latest Precise Point Positioning (PPP) algorithms, and leverages the existing Hexagon capabilities in ground network infrastructure, correction data generation, and data packaging for delivery. By eliminating convergence time while providing high accuracy global positioning, TerraStar X will form the future of Hexagon’s correction services for safety of life applications and Autonomous X. When combined with automotive-grade GNSS receivers available through Hexagon Positioning Intelligence, this technology allows automotive customers to evaluate positioning performance in real-time using data delivered over the cellular network or the L-band frequency using Ligado’s SkyTerra satellite in North America.

“Ligado’s expertise in satellite delivery and proactive involvement in this project enabled rapid deployment of our TerraStar X correction technology over the test area,” said Sara Masterson, Positioning Services Segment Manager with Hexagon’s Positioning Intelligence division. “Their unique spot-beam technology enables efficient delivery of the higher bandwidth correction data required for this application and adds a delivery method providing continental scale coverage.”

Hexagon has been providing highly reliable, precise GNSS corrections under VERIPOS, TerraStar, Oceanix, and SmartNet brands for over 20 years. The company’s GNSS correction services are used for precision agriculture, survey, marine, oil and gas, automotive, transportation, and emerging applications. Hexagon operates what it claims is the world’s largest reference station network, consisting of over 4500 stations.

“Hexagon is uniquely positioned to offer end to end solutions from correction data generation through to GNSS positioning solutions in the vehicle”, said Brian Deobald, Vice President, Strategic Product and Ecosystem Development, Ligado Networks. “We are excited to partner with Hexagon on this opportunity to demonstrate the delivery of TerraStar X technology, using high throughput, cost-efficient satellite connectivity to enable superior performance and reliability for autonomous driving applications.

Trial networks for customer evaluation are currently available in California, Arizona, and Michigan over satellite or cellular network, and in Germany using cellular delivery. The infrastructure is scalable, enabling timely geographic expansion to accommodate automotive development programs globally. Commercial solutions designed uniquely for the automotive market will be available in the future.