Celestia UK recently announced that the company had won a 800k euros ESA NAVSIP (Navigation, Innovation and Support Program) contract to develop a PNT solution based on LEO satellite constellations for 5G networks and applications, a solution that will boost the reliability and performance of GNSS.
Called LEO-SYN+, the project will use LEO satellite Signals of Opportunity (SoOp) to provide a resilient position and time reference for 5G networks and improve the robustness of GNSS signals.
Time and Synchronization are fundamental building blocks in 5G and GNSS systems play a pivotal role in the network operation. However, GNSS signals can prove vulnerable to interference, for instance when blocked by objects such as tall buildings or trees, and require augmentation with supplementary technology to deliver the level of reliability and longevity required.
Celestia UK’s solution is to combine the use of LEO satellite constellation signals with the development of a PNT receiver compatible with multi-GNSS constellations and LEO SoOps and test the solution in 5G networks.
During the project, a prototype will be produced to validate the product design and the technology development, paving the way for additional applications of the technology to other critical infrastructures after the initial ESA NAVSIP roll-out.
To deliver the ambitious project, Celestia UK is partnering with Heriot-Watt University who bring extensive knowledge in SATCOMs and Digital Signal Processing and The Scotland 5G Center, the national center for accelerating the deployment and adoption of 5G and realizing its economic and societal potential for Scotland.
“It is a great benefit for the business to have won an ESA NAVSIP contract and we are looking forward to collaborating with ESA and our partners to unlock the potential to improve the resilience of 5G networks with our PNT solution,” said Malachy Devlin, CEO of Celestia UK. “Building on our expertise in high throughput electronic steerable gateways together with the evolution of 5G integrating non terrestrial networks together with the Scotland 5G Center here on our doorstep, make us well-placed to meet the requirements of this challenging project and deliver a future-proofed solution with scope for considerable future commercial application.”
“The Scotland 5G Center is currently providing businesses access to 5G services through a national network of innovation hubs, S5GConnect Program. It is well known that 5G will support higher data throughput and interactive services through reduced latency. However, 5G will also provide new possibilities for positioning, navigation and timing (PNT). Use of advanced antennas and positioning over satellite will be critical for outdoor applications where precise navigation is essential to meet safety requirements for the likes of drone navigation and autonomous vehicles. We are delighted to be working alongside Celestia UK, supporting the innovative LEO-SYN+ project, which will utilise our cutting edge 5G network,” said Ian Sharp, Head of Business Development, The Scotland 5G Center.
Note: NAVSIP is an ESA program and the Contract was carried out under a program of and funded by the European Space Agency.