[teqc] helpful tip of week 1996

Lou Estey lou at unavco.org
Thu Apr 12 06:41:22 MDT 2018

This week's tip: GLONASS broadcast ephemeris

The other pieces of the GNSS puzzle where GLONASS differs from most other GNSSs
(SBAS being the only other current exception *) are the components of the broadcast
ephemeris to describe each SV's position in space and time.

Galileo, Beidou, QZSS, and IRNSS all basically use the ephemeris scheme developed
and implemented first for GPS: each ephemeris is defined with Keplerian orbital
parameters, plus half a dozen related perturbation parameters, at a specific time
epoch (i.e. the "time of ephemeris" or ToE).  Simple math operations are then used
to find the SV's Earth-centered, Earth-fixed (ECEF) 3d-position at other times.
Typically, each ephemeris is nominally good for at least hours (e.g. normally +/-2 hours
for each GPS ephemeris), but often each ephemeris could be pushed into use for
reasonable results for longer time periods if high accuracy is not needed (e.g.
one only needs a rough qc result).

Instead, GLONASS (and SBAS) SVs use a different scheme: each ephemeris is defined
by the SV's 3d position, velocity, and acceleration at a specific time epoch (the
ToE). The GLONASS ICD suggests using these with the equations of orbital motion,
again with some perturbation terms, to find the SV's ECEF 3d-position (and velocity
and acceleration) at other times.  A numerical integration approach (such as the
classical Runge-Kutta method, RK4) can be used for extrapolations, forward or
backward, from the ToE.  However, each GLONASS ephemeris is really only useful
for up to +/-15 minutes from the ToE (and maybe a bit beyond, but not too much).
Thus each broadcast GLONASS SV ephemeris is updated every 30 minutes, or 48
GLONASS ephemerides per day per SV (**).

Which brings us to teqc.  Until recently, teqc versions with GLONASS orbit determination
did not perform GLONASS SV positioning according to the GLONASS ICD.  (These versions
are the 2011Oct11 with this "beta" functionality, and then up to and including version
2017Sep15.)  Instead, a piece-wise polynomial fit of the ECEF XYZ positions was done,
with time points at adjacent ToEs, interpolating for the position in X, Y, and Z for
other times.  This method worked reasonably well as long as there were ephemerides for
every 30-minute ToE interval and there were at least 7 of them.  (This method might have
worked even better if the ECEF coordinates had first been rotated into an Earth-centered
inertial (ECI) frame for the polynomial fit and the interpolated ECI XYZ rotated back
to the ECEF frame -- probably requiring fewer consecutive ephemerides per polynomial --
but this possible modification was never investigated.)

A discussion of some of the problems with the polynomial method (at least as
implemented in teqc) for GLONASS orbits was given in
https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002375.html  (You might want to review
this earlier posting if you are using an older teqc version for GLONASS qc to see
what you are missing, or worse yet, what results might be misleading.)  Another
problem not discussed in this earlier posting was that the polynomial fits of only
XYZ positions do not allow for the relativistic eccentricity correction to be made
for each GLONASS SV during the qc antenna point-positioning.

Version 2018Mar15 (see https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002450.html)
uses the full set of ECEF 3d-position, velocity and acceleration terms, in accordance
with the GLONASS ICD, for GLONASS (and SBAS) SV position determination and qc antenna
point-positioning.  If you are using GLONASS (and/or SBAS) data and using teqc for qc,
I highly encourage you to abandon all previous versions of teqc and use version 2018Mar15.

Happy teqc-ing!


Louis H. Estey, Ph.D.              office:  [+001] 303-381-7456
UNAVCO, 6350 Nautilus Drive           FAX:  [+001] 303-381-7451
Boulder, CO  80301-5554            e-mail:  lou  unavco.org

"If the universe is the answer, what is the question?"
                                                -- Leon Lederman

* In this regard, the broadcast ephemerides of SBAS use the same scheme as used

** The broadcast SBAS ephemerides are updated much more often, every 256 seconds,
or 337.5 SBAS ephemerides per day per SV.

Past helpful tips:

week 1894: using teqc config files - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002067.html
week 1895: qc of high-rate data - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002071.html
week 1896: UNIX/Linux shells for Windows - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002072.html
week 1897: '-' vs. '+' teqc options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002076.html
week 1898: auto-identification of formats - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002092.html
week 1899: auto-identification vs. format flags - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002096.html
week 1900: square brackets in options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002105.html
week 1901: using option '+mds' - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002108.html
week 1902: qc results w/ problematic nav messages - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002113.html
week 1903: '-no_orb[it]' and '-no_pos[ition]' options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002115.html
week 1904: '-week' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002117.html
week 1905: using '+bcf' for XYZ/geodetic conversion - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002126.html
week 1906: the '+v[erify]' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002128.html
week 1907: '+C2', '+L5', "+L6', '+L7', '+L8', '+all' options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002130.html
week 1908: getting RINEX doppler and L2 - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002131.html
week 1909: using paths w/ file names - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002132.html
week 1910: the (un)importance of file names - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002133.html
week 1911: notices, warnings, and errors - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002134.html
week 1912: the '-max_rx_SVs' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002137.html
week 1913: the end of '++igs' and '+igs' - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002140.html
week 1914: splicing together RINEX files - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002144.html
week 1915: using '-O.int' and '-O.dec' - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002145.html
week 1916: '+doy' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002146.html
week 1917: '-tbin' and '-ast' options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002152.html
week 1918: mp12 RMS before/after Oct 2013 - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002158.html
week 1919: the global windowing options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002159.html
week 1920: '-M.dec' and '-N.dec' options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002163.html
week 1921: combining time filtering options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002176.html
week 1922: helping me (or someone else on the list) help you - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002187.html
week 1923: the "build" line - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002190.html
week 1924: the qc '-w[idth]' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002193.html
week 1925: qc with explicit time windowing - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002194.html
week 1926: the '+rx_state' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002200.html
week 1927: the '-O.sum' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002204.html
week 1928: the '+meta' and '+mds' options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2016/002206.html
week 1930: more on '-O.sum' - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002207.html
week 1931: the '-O.s[ystem]' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002208.html
week 1932: leap seconds - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002215.html
week 1936: what you can (and shouldn't) do in a RINEX obs file - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002229.html
week 1938: the '+psp' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002231.html
week 1939: the '+diag' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002235.html
week 1951: '-n_<system>' and SV filtering options - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002277.html
week 1953: more with '+diag' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002287.html
week 1954: using '+diag' output to split raw files - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002290.html
week 1955: current qc notation - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002302.html
week 1956: the '+qcq' option - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002304.html
week 1957: using Trimble formats - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002305.html
week 1958: ToC != ToE messages - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002310.html
week 1959: receivers vs. formats - http://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002311.html
week 1960: when the '-week' option is very wrong to use - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002314.html
week 1961: "less" is usually best - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002315.html
week 1962: using GPS L2C with teqc - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002316.html
week 1964: the '+eds' options - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002317.html
week 1965: handling RINEX comment lines - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002324.html
week 1966: the '+dUTC_p' options - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002331.html
week 1967: the strange position from '+meta' - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002355.html
week 1972: what shows up as metadata in RINEX headers - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002362.html
week 1973: GPS L2C navigation messages - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002363.html
week 1974: the '+ion_p' options - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002370.html
week 1975: the '+event' options - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002372.html
week 1976: options '+smtt' (default) vs. '-smtt' - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002374.html
week 1977: the reported interval with '+meta' for a RINEX obs file - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002377.html
week 1978: the '-N.dUTC' options - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002378.html
week 1979: the various qc elevation angles - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002383.html
week 1980: avoid in RINEX: Transit data - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002385.html
week 1981: avoid in RINEX: epoch flag = 6 - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2017/002389.html
week 1982: avoid in RINEX: RCV CLOCK OFFS APPL = 1 - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002392.html
week 1983: don't count on in RINEX: receiver clock offset per epoch - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002393.html
week 1984: requirements for multiple target files/stdin - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002410.html
week 1985: default output for various input - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002412.html
week 1986: the '+latency' options - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002419.html
week 1987: the 'O.px and 'O.pg' options - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002422.html
week 1988: the '+relax' option - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002423.html
week 1992: the '+x_tilt' options - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002452.html
week 1993: GLONASS: slot and freq. chnl. numbers - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002453.html
week 1994: GLONASS: slot numbers > 24 - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002454.html
week 1995: GLONASS: signals - https://postal.unavco.org/pipermail/teqc/2018/002456.html

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