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GNSS Airport Interference Monitoring System including Localization Capabilities (GAIMS 2)

The goal of the GAIMS 2 project is on the one hand the detection and localization of interfering signals, with respect to GNSS signals, based on a software defined radio architecture, and on the other hand the assessment and raising of the awareness of the vulnerability of GNSS.

Brief Description
In the last decade, Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) have gained an important position within our daily life, often hidden from plain sight. The fact that GNSS is not only used for positioning but also for timing, synchronisation of GSM networks, electricity management or bank transfers is not commonly known. Furthermore, a combination of GNSS and Satellite Based Augmentation Systems (SBAS), like EGNOS, are already used for GNSS-based approach procedures at various European airports, e.g. in Austria, Graz and Linz. These approaches will be increased in the future in Austria and all over the world.

While a technology gets more important to our society, the interest of malicious subjects also increases, in harming this technology. Recent examples are the airport Newark, where the ground based augmentation system (GBAS) used for precise approaches had to shut down because of a jamming device passing by on the highway surrounding the airport. Furthermore, at Kaohsiung airport in Taiwan, 117 interfering events per day have been detected during a study. The threat is real.

The "GNSS airport interference monitoring system 2" (GAIMS 2) project relies on the results and algorithms developed during the GAIMS project. While GAIMS focused on the detection and classification of interfering sources from an algorithmic point of view, the GAIMS 2 project puts its main focus on the localization of these sources and addresses the problem of the user awareness. To accomplish these goals, the algorithms developed during GAIMS will be reviewed, and enhanced if necessary. Furthermore, a difference in received signal strength (DRSS) technique will be used for the localization of the interfering source. Therefore, at least three interference monitoring modules will be necessary. A demonstrator hardware will be developed and tested, including a digital signal processor (DSP), which will be able to process the received data and include the algorithms for interference detection and classification in a software defined radio (SDR) receiver architecture. This SDR architecture leads to increased flexibility and adaptation of the solutions. By utilizing a centralised data centre, which gathers information from the interference monitoring modules, it will be possible to localise the interference source, enabling the prosecution of operators of jamming devices. This is an important step, since the operation of jamming devices in Austria is illegal.

In parallel to the technological development, the awareness situation regarding unintentional and intentional interferences and thus the vulnerability of GNSS/SBAS will be analyzed. Currently, most of the users do not recognise and consider the potential threats adequately, thus leading to potentially huge impacts in our society. The role of the authorities is currently unclear and no countermeasures exist so far. During the GAIMS 2 project, the awareness will be raised and a powerful tool provided to the competent authorities which significantly improves the safety and reliability of GNSS solutions.

Project Partners
    TeleConsult Austria GmbH (Lead)
    Brimatech Services GmbH
    Frequentis AG

Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG)

    Successfully completed in 2015