Elektor Team

Integrated GPS module provides advanced localisation support

December 10, 2013 | 14:37
Integrated GPS module provides advanced localisation support
Integrated GPS module provides advanced localisation support

Fastrax has unveiled the Fastrax UC430, which combines a high-performance GPS receiver with an integrated chip antenna in a miniature package. Measuring just 9.6 x 14.0 x 1.95 mm including antenna, the low-power module is ideal for use in handheld computers, digital cameras, mobile phones, asset tracking devices, and other applications with space and power constraints.


The UC430 maintains constant location awareness. Utilising SiRFaware™ technology, including the Adaptive Micropower Controller, the module autonomously activates itself periodically from standby, reducing the time to first fix (TTFF) by up to 70%. SiRFaware can maintain hot-start readiness with an average current consumption of 125 µA and less than 10 mW power consumption in TricklePower™ 1-Hz navigation mode to ensure long battery life.

The UC430 performs self-assisted localisation using client-generated extended ephemeris (CGEE), which enables the module to calculate predicted satellite positions for up to three days after the most recent activation based on broadcast ephemeris data. CGEE eliminates the need for  time-consuming data communication to obtain conventional A-GPS information. The module also features future support and connectivity for optional external sensors for dead reckoning, enabling improved static position and movement calculation when satellite signals are unavailable.

In handheld digital devices, the antenna design and receiver sensitivity must accommodate varying device orientation. The circular radiation pattern of the UC430’s integrated chip antenna provides reliable signal acquisition, while the cold start acquisition sensitivity of -147 dBm and tracking sensitivity of -163 dBm ensure high-performance navigation. The device also includes an active jammer remover, which tracks and removes up to eight interfering signals that could otherwise decrease navigation performance.

Along with the integrated chip antenna, the UC430 supports signal input from an external antenna. The allows the integrated antenna to be used as a backup, enabling the module to remain operational even if the external antenna is disconnected or damaged. The module supports both active and passive antennas.

Image: Fastrax

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