Localization is critical for autonomous vehicles, sea transport guidance, air transport guidance, and present day military missions. When the Global Position System (GPS) is denied or spoofed, current navigational devices can become highly inaccurate. For instance, an Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) heading estimate will drift, accumulate error, and degrade the position over time.
The Sky Polarization Azimuth Sensing System, SkyPASS, provides an inexpensive method for measuring absolute orientation in a GPS denied environment. The system is passive and well suited for any man or vehicle platform to provide mission critical navigational localization accuracy regardless of GPS accessibility.
SkyPASSTM Features and Benefits:
- Preliminary spec: 4 mil heading accuracy
- Calculates absolute heading
- Works even when GPS is denied
- Low SWaP
- Low cost
- No start-up delay
- No set-up or leveling
- Not affected by magnetic disturbances
How it Works
Sky polarization is an upper atmosphere phenomenon observable from any point on earth or from any aerial platform. In the diagram above, the time of day is shown at the top of each polarization map, the sun is shown as a small, yellow disc, and the center of each plot is the zenith. Using advanced algorithms and optics, SkyPASS is able to detect and decipher the polarization map of the sky to compute highly accurate heading.