GPS Solutions

, Volume 18, Issue 3, pp 443–452

An investigation of GNSS atomic clock behavior at short time intervals

Original Article


A technique for obtaining clock measurements from individual GNSS satellites at short time intervals is presented. The methodology developed in this study allows for accurate satellite clock stability analysis without an ultra-stable clock at the ground receiver. Variations in the carrier phase caused by the satellite clock are isolated using a combination of common GNSS carrier-phase processing techniques. Furthermore, the white phase variations caused by the thermal noise of the collection and processing equipment are statistically modeled and removed, allowing for analysis of clock performance at subsecond intervals. Allan deviation analyses of signals collected from GPS and GLONASS satellites reveal distinct intervals of clock noise for timescales less than 100 s. The clock data collected from GPS Block IIA, IIR, IIR-M, and GLONASS satellites reveal similar stability performance at time periods greater than 20 s. The GLONASS clock stability in the 0.6–10 s range, however, is significantly worse than GPS. Applications that rely on ultra-stable clock behavior from the GLONASS satellites at these timescales may therefore require high-rate corrections to estimate and remove oscillator-based errors in the carrier phase.


Allan deviation Clock analysis GPS GLONASS Radio occultation 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Erin Griggs
    • 1
  • E. Robert Kursinski
    • 2
  • Dennis Akos
    • 1
  1. 1.University of ColoradoBoulderUSA
  2. 2.Moog Advanced Missions and ScienceGoldenUSA

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