What is a Pseudolite?

By Spirent On January 1, 2011

A pseudolite (or pseudo-satellite) is any device that performs a specific task that would otherwise require a satellite. So, for example, a dedicated transmitter might be deployed to extend the reach of a GNSS to areas where the satellite signals are either blocked or jammed, and there has been considerable success with deployment of pseudolites to extend GPS coverage indoors. These are relatively simple devices that only transmit the coarse acquisition code.

Pseudolites are also used to simulate future GNSS satellites in a real-world environment as well as for robotic guidance in space exploration.

single-channel GNSS simulator (or signal generator) can be used as a pseudolite, particularly in the research and development arena. However, care needs to be taken when operating powerful transmitters within GNSS bands. Clearly, highly sensitive GNSS receivers designed to capture minute signals from distant satellites will not react well to high-power transmissions on their receiving frequencies.


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