Undifferenced ionospheric-free ambiguity resolution using GLONASS data from inhomogeneous stations
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GLONASS frequency division multiple access signals render ambiguity resolution (AR) rather difficult because: (1) Different wavelengths are used by different satellites, and (2) pseudorange inter-frequency biases (IFBs) cannot be precisely modeled by means of a simple function. In this study, an AR approach based on the ionospheric-free combination with a wavelength of about 5.3 cm is assessed for GLONASS precise point positioning (PPP). This approach simplifies GLONASS AR because pseudorange IFBs do not matter, and PPP-AR can be enabled across inhomogeneous receivers. One month of GLONASS data from 165 European stations were processed for different network size and different durations of observation periods. We find that 89.9% of the fractional parts of ionospheric-free ambiguities agree well within ± 0.15 cycles for a small network (radius = 500 km), while 77.6% for a large network (radius = 2000 km). In case of the 3-hourly GLONASS-only static PPP solutions for the small network, reliable AR can be achieved where the number of fixed GLONASS ambiguities account for 97.6% within all candidate ambiguities. Meanwhile, the RMS of the east, north and up components with respect to daily solutions is improved from 1.0, 0.6, 1.2 cm to 0.4, 0.4, 1.1 cm, respectively. When GPS PPP-AR is carried out simultaneously, the positioning performance can be improved significantly such that the GLONASS ambiguity fixing rate rises from 74.4 to 95.4% in case of hourly solutions. Finally, we introduce ambiguity-fixed GLONASS orbits to re-attempt GLONASS PPP-AR in contrast to the above solutions with ambiguity-float orbits. We find that ambiguity-fixed orbits lead to clearly better agreement among ionospheric-free ambiguity fractional parts in case of the large network, that is 80.5% of fractional parts fall in ± 0.15 cycles in contrast to 74.6% for the ambiguity-float orbits. We conclude that highly efficient GLONASS ionospheric-free PPP-AR is achievable in case of a few hours of data when GPS PPP-AR is also accomplished, and ambiguity-fixed GLONASS orbits will contribute significantly to PPP-AR over wide areas.
KeywordsPrecise point positioning GLONASS Ionospheric-free ambiguity resolution Fractional-cycle bias Inhomogeneous stations
This work is funded by National key R&D plan on strategic international scientific and technological innovation cooperation special project (2016YFE0202300) and National Science Foundation of China (41674033) and State Key Research and Development Programme (2016YFB0501802). We would like to thank IGS and ESA for data and products. The Super Computing Facility at Wuhan University contributes to this study greatly.
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