Robust Anti-Jamming Navigation System Uses Inertial and Radar to Complete BVLOS Mission

Photo credit: Easy Aeria

In November 2021 in Israel, infiniDome, Honeywell, and Easy Aerial demonstrated a UAV-tailored resilient navigation solution to complete critical missions under GPS challenged and denied environments. The three companies demonstrated the fully operational robust navigation system integrating GPS anti-jamming technology, inertial system and radar velocity system into a fully resilient navigation system for UAVs.

The robust navigation system, jointly developed by Honeywell and infiniDome, solves the GPS jamming problem by tightly pairing GNSS-based UAV-tailored Honeywell Compact Inertial Navigation System (HCINS) with infiniDome’s GPS anti-jamming technology (GPSdome), integrated with Honeywell’s Radar-based Velocity System (HRVS). The Robust Navigation System is a one-stop shop that can be installed on almost any UAV with a common flight controller (e.g. PixHawk) providing it with continuous, accurate navigation data in GNSS-challenged or fully GNSS-denied environments.

Topcon: next level precision

The main goal for the November demo was to prove the Robust Navigation System capabilities in maintaining autonomous navigation operation for multi-copters under different GPS/GNSS jamming scenarios. The demo was attended by Israeli defense primes, drone and UAV manufacturers and government end-users.

The testing was set up at the testing range in the center of Israel where 2 military-grade directional jammers (different types & bandwidths) were used to jam the navigation system of an Easy Aerial Osprey Hexa-copter operating with a PixHawk 2.1 Cube Black.

The purpose of the test was to show that a UAV protected by the Robust Navigation System, under a GPS challenged environment (single direction of jamming) and fully denied environment (multiple directions of powerful jamming by military-grade jammers) can perform BVLOS and autonomous tasks accurately and safely without needing to assume manual control of the UAV. The companies successfully displayed and recorded that the UAV, protected by the Robust Navigation System solution, passed all planned tests and proved that in a GNSS-challenged environment and even in full GNSS-denied environment, the UAV can not only safely land or return home, it can complete its BVLOS / autonomous mission.

The demo also showed that an unprotected drone, when attacked by the same jammers, within 3-5 seconds loses position accuracy and GNSS fix, tilts at an aggressive angle and takes off in seconds in a random direction. The only way to avoid it drifting kilometers away and eventually crashing is by taking manual control and visually bringing it back.