Detecting amplitude scintillation using C/N0 differences

Ryan J. R. Thompson, Ediz Cetin, Andrew G. Dempster

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Ionospheric scintillation poses a serious source of vulnerability to Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receivers, prompting its study so that it can be modeled, predicted, and its effects on receiver tracking analyzed. In this work a technique is presented that allows for the detection of ionospheric induced amplitude scintillation using the differences of Carrier to Noise Density (C/N0) values between the satellite ground-tracks from stationary GNSS receivers. Amplitude scintillation is typically monitored using specialized GNSS receivers which provide the S4 index in real-time, while the presented technique allows for amplitude scintillation to be monitored using more common receiver observables in post-processing, and can be readily applied to large collections of GNSS observations already archived in RINEX formats. The proposed technique takes advantage of the property that C/N0 values repeat with a satellites ground-track allowing for the effects of multipath, which can make C/N0 a noisy measurement, to be removed. Results are compared with the S4 values from a network of Ionospheric Scintillation Monitoring (ISM) receivers to demonstrate that the proposed technique is effective at detecting moderate amplitude scintillations. It is also shown that it is possible to characterize and differentiate between Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) and space weather effects by looking at the C/N0 values from surrounding GNSS stations to reduce the number of false alarms, depending on what is being monitored.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication27th International technical meeting of the satellite division of the Institute of Navigation
Subtitle of host publication(ION GNSS 2014)
Place of PublicationRed Hook, NY
PublisherInstitute of Navigation
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9781634399913
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes
Event27th International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of the Institute of Navigation, ION GNSS 2014 - Tampa, United States
Duration: 8 Sep 201412 Sep 2014


Other27th International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of the Institute of Navigation, ION GNSS 2014
CountryUnited States

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