GNSS receivers seem to get all the attention. Go to any technical GNSS conference and the lion’s share of presentations are about receiver design and techniques: better algorithms, signal processing, integration with other sensors, spoofing detection, and on and on.
But here’s a fundamental fact of radio science: without antennas, GNSS receivers are essentially useless. Antennas are the component that picks up the GNSS signals out of the RF noise and channels them to the receiver proper — the better the antenna, the better the signals that receivers have to process.
Moreover, largely constrained by the laws of physics, the physical aspects of antennas play a substantial role in the size, weight, and power parameters within which receiver designers must work. And, by extension, antennas are a key variable in the cost factors associated with receiver manufacturing.
With these factors in mind, we turned to Dr. Inder “Jiti” Gupta for insights into the current state of GNSS antennas and their role in GNSS positioning, navigation, and timing. Currently a research professor with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering of The Ohio State University, Gupta has focused on GNSS antennas and antenna electronics for the past 17 years. An Edmond S. Gillespie Fellow of the Antenna Measurement Techniques Association (AMTA) the recipient of the 2007 AMTA Distinguished Achievement Award, he has authored more than 150 journal and conference papers.