GPS Solutions

, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 411–424 | Cite as

An evaluation of potential solar radio emission power threat on GPS and GLONASS performance

  • Vladislav V. DemyanovEmail author
  • Edward L. Afraimovich
  • Shuanggen Jin
Original Article


The L-band solar radio emission has recently been regarded as a potential threat to stable GPS and GLONASS performance. However, the threat has not been completely investigated or assessed so far. We evaluate in detail the occurrence of GPS/GLONASS signal tracking failures under the direct exposure of wideband solar radio emission. By means of theoretical analysis, we found that the solar radio emission power level of 1,000 sfu (solar flux units) or higher can cause GPS/GLONASS signal tracking failures especially at L2 frequency. In order to prove this evaluation, we investigated GPS/GLONASS signal tracking failures at L1 and L2 frequencies during power solar flares X6.5 (December 6, 2006) and X3.4 (December 13, 2006). Comparing these events with weaker solar flare X17.2 on October 28, 2003, we found that L2 signal tracking failures appeared when the solar radio emission power exceeds 1,000 sfu. Therefore, our theoretical and experimental results confirm the earlier results by other authors.


Solar flares Solar radio emission GPS GLONASS performance 



Authors express profound gratitude to Prof. G. Ya. Smolkov for his support and interest in this investigation, Dr. V. V. Grechnev for his help in using the 1 and 2 GHz data of the Nobeyama Radio Polarimeters and colleagues from the Nobeyama Radio Observatory, for solar radio emission data on December 13, 2006, as well as the IGS ( and GEONET ( products/) for RINEX data. The work is supported by the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Program of basic research of the Presidium of the Russian Academy of Sciences “Solar activity and physical processes in the Sun-Earth system”. Finally, the authors wish to thank the referees for their valuable suggestions which allowed us to improve the quality of the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vladislav V. Demyanov
    • 1
    Email author
  • Edward L. Afraimovich
    • 2
  • Shuanggen Jin
    • 3
  1. 1.Irkutsk State Railway UniversityIrkutskRussia
  2. 2.Institute of Solar-Terrestrial Physics, The Russian Academy of Sciences, The Siberian BranchIrkutskRussia
  3. 3.Shanghai Astronomical Observatory, Chinese Academy of SciencesShanghaiChina

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