computer hardware, consumer electronics, electronic components  

GPS receiver

The global positioning system (GPS) is based on an earth-orbiting constellation of twenty-four satellite vehicles each broadcasting its precise location and ranging information. The basic functionality of a global positioning system (GPS) receiver is to calculate the latitude, longitude and altitude of the GPS receiver's location upon receiving a number of GPS signals from a network of GPS satellites that orbit the earth. The GPS receiver demodulates a signal from the GPS satellite to obtain the GPS satellite's orbital data. The GPS receiver then derives the receiver's three-dimensional position using simultaneous equations from the GPS satellite's orbit and time information and the received signal's delay time. The global positioning system (GPS) has become extremely popular for a number of applications. Global positioning system receivers have been used for several years for determining geographical location and/or time in commercial applications including navigation, timing, mapping, surveying, machine and agricultural control, vehicle tracking, and marking locations and time of events. GPS receivers are now incorporated into a variety of systems including consumer electronic systems in which the location information or time information provided by GPS supplements the other information provided by the system. A GPS receiver is basically composed of an antenna unit for receiving high frequency satellite signals and a processing unit for processing the signals to compute positional coordinates of the GPS receiver. GPS receivers have local oscillators or oscillators that are used in a heterodyne or superheterodyne configuration for acquiring GPS satellite signals. The center frequency of the oscillator is typically determined by a controller. Consumer GPS receivers generally include smart antenna for direct connections to a portable computer, plug-in receivers using PC card technology for direct connections, and several other receivers. Other receivers offer cables to connect to a computer by which to exchange data. The cables are either permanently attached to the receiver or must be connected or disconnected with both hands. A consumer GPS receiver receives an L1 band from the GPS satellite, namely, a spectrum diffusion signal electric wave referred to as a C/A (Coarse/Acquisition) code and carries out a positioning calculation.

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