Bringing differential GPS to drones

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


I will discuss the use of multiple GPS receivers on drones for orientation estimation. The core challenge is in accurately computing the relative locations between each receiver pair, and translating these measurements into the drone’s 3D orientation. Achieving good orientation accuracy requires the relative GPS distances to be accurate to a few centimeters – a difficult task given that GPS today is only accurate to around 1-4 meters. Moreover, the accuracy needs to be precise even under sharp drone maneuvers, GPS signal blockage, and sudden bouts of missing data. In this talk, I will discuss the design of SafetyNet, an off-the-shelf GPS-only system that addresses these challenges through a series of techniques, culminating in a novel particle filter framework running over multi-GNSS systems (GPS,GLONASS, and SBAS). Results from real flight tests report median orientation accuracies of 2 degrees even under overcast weather conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 3rd Workshop on Hot Topics in Wireless, HotWireless 2016
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages1
ISBN (Print)9781450342513
StatePublished - Oct 3 2016
Event3rd ACM Workshop on Hot Topics in Wireless, HotWireless 2016 - New York, United States
Duration: Oct 3 2016Oct 7 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings of the Annual International Conference on Mobile Computing and Networking, MOBICOM


Conference3rd ACM Workshop on Hot Topics in Wireless, HotWireless 2016
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew York

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Software


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