2 Replies Latest reply: Aug 22, 2011 12:49 PM by Harald Naumann RSS

Is it time to say good bye to GPS and to welcome Glonass?

Harald Naumann Master

Two weeks ago I was visiting customers to present the latest GNSS  modules. These hybrid GNSS modules are able to receive GPS and Glonass  satellites in parallel. We received 17 channels. Just have a look at the  video (37 sec).

  • Dark blue bars = GPS satellites with fix
  • Light blue bars = Glonass satellites with fix
  • 1 orange bar = GPS satellites without fix
  • 1 red bar = Glonass satellites without fix


In Paris we were able to receive 21 channels in parallel. Anyhow,  worst case you “see” 3 GPS and 1 Glonass, 2 GPS and 2 Glonass, 1 GPS and  3 Glonass or 0 GPS and 4 Glonass satellites at the sky. Without Glonass  you will not be able to locate anything. A good example was the  beginning of a war. Rumours tell that we got 5 hours no GPS fix in  Europe.

The selection of the right GPS module with the right A-GPS concept  and the right power save mode is a decision that will change the power  consumption and the standby time of your tracking device dramatic.


  • Is it a single  GNSS module that supports GPS only enough or is it better to use a  hybrid GPS/Glonass module? Makes it sense to use A-GPS?
  • Is a  1-axis gyro, 3-axis gyro, accelerometer, pressure sensor, magnetometer  and odometer interface useful or not?
  • Makes it sense to develop a  prototype with 1-axis gyro, 3-axis gyro, accelerometer, pressure sensor,  magnetometer and odometer interface and after the test to decide which  sensors will help to get the best indoor positioning?
  • Will one of the  five different power save modes be helpful, and which out of five to  select?
  • Is an A-GPS by A-GPS-server, self assisted A-GPS or A-GPS on  demand the better solution?
  • What type of antenna is to select:  directional GPS patch antennas with right hand polarisation, non  polarised GPS chip antennas, single ended GPS helical antennas or better  a ground plan independent helical with balun to minimise the effect of  human body?
  • Shall we trust one GNSS system like GPS or is it saver to  use a hybrid GPS/Glonass modules?


Do you have further questions and would like to start the development of   your own tracking device right now?  We will be glad to share our   more than 15 years in GSM and GPS plus 25 years in radio communication   with you. Just send an e-mail to  harald.naumann (at) gsm-modem.de .

  • Re: Is it time to say good bye to GPS and to welcome Glonass?

    It would certainly be worth considering implementing both technologies in one device, especially if you are planning on entering the Russian market where import taxes for GPS only devices are very high.




    • Re: Is it time to say good bye to GPS and to welcome Glonass?
      Harald Naumann Master

      Not just both, the GNSS module supports five GNSS systems

      •  GNSS module supports GPS (US), Glonass (Russia), Galileo (EU), Compass (China), QZSS (Japan)


        GNSS systems: GPS (US), Glonass (Russia), Galileo (EU)*, Compass (China)*, QZSS (Japan) *

      • Dead Reckoning: Odometer pulse, Gyro, CAN bus DWP*
        * by firmware update
      • Differential GPS: RTCM104, SBAS (WAAS, Egnos)
      • Assisted GPS support: ST Self-Trained Assisted GPS (ST-AGPS) 5 days, GPStreamTM 7 days
      • Channels: 32
      • Ultra High Sensitivity -162 dBm(Tracking) / Cold start sensitivity -146dBm
      • Power consumption: 80 – 150mW (depending on supported GNSS systems)
      • I2C, SPI, GPIO, 2 UARTs, 1 USB, 1 CAN,1PPS
      • 3 axis gyro, 3 axis magnetometer, 3 axis accelerometer, pressure sensor, EEPROM on I2C
      • Anti-Jamming detection and removal
      • JTAG interface
      • Running on your on program on GNSS module
      • Support of ARM Realview 3.1 compiler and Lauterbach ICE, GNU compilers(planned)
      • AEC-Q100 automotive qualified (option)
      • Small form factor: 16.2mm x 18.8mm x 2.3mm

      The MEMS and gyros offer the option on indoor locating. A-GPS will  help with a GPS fix in worst case conditions indoor or in urban canyon.  The running own program on the module will save the micro controller.  The rising of the number of visible satellites by combination of GPS  plus Glonass will increase the accuracy.