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EGNOS Signal Structure

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Title EGNOS Signal Structure
Edited by GMV
Level Basic
Year of Publication 2011
Logo GMV.png

EGNOS (European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service) is the European satellite-based augmentation service (SBAS) that complements the existing satellite navigation services provided by the US Global Positioning System (GPS). The EGNOS signal-in-space is broadcast by Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) satellites in the L1 frequency, centred at 1575.42 MHz, meeting stringent standards established by organizations like ICAO and RTCA.

EGNOS SIS Interface Characteristics

Inmarsat and Artemis EGNOS geostationary broadcast areas

The EGNOS Signal In Space format is compliant with the ICAO SARPs for SBAS[1] as stated in the EGNOS Open Service Definition Document and the EGNOS Safety of Life Service Definition Document.[2][3] The EGNOS SIS interface characteristics comprise carrier and modulation radio frequency, message structure, protocol and content of the EGNOS message (detailed in the EGNOS Message Format definition).

EGNOS uses three GEO satellites at different longitude to broadcast its signals across the whole EGNOS service area, namely two Inmarsat-3 satellites, one positioned over the Atlantic and the other over Africa, and the ESA's Artemis satellite, located over Africa as well[4]; the footprint of the 3 Geostationary satellites can be observed in the illustration.

Contrary to the case of core navigation space vehicles with active navigation payloads, the EGNOS GEO satellites carry transponders relaying the signal transmitted from the ground segment uplink stations. It is noted that EGNOS does not provide GEO ranging.[2]

EGNOS SIS RF Characteristics

As any other SBAS, EGNOS broadcasts its augmentation information in L1 band, at 1575.42 MHz, using right-hand circular polarization (RHCP). Each individual second, EGNOS transmit a navigation message containing 250 bits of information. This raw navigation message is ½ convolutional encoded with Forward Error Correcting (FEC) Code resulting in a 500 symbol/second EGNOS data stream. This data stream is added modulo-2 to a 1023-bit PRN code, which will then be biphase shift-keyed (BPSK) modulated onto the L1 carrier frequency at a rate of 1.023 Mega-chips/second (Mcps). [5]

For unobstructed view-lines with elevation angles greater than 5 degrees on the Earth surface, the EGNOS signal is received by 3dBi linearly polarised antennae with a power in the –161 dBW to –153 dBW range, assuming an orientation of the antenna orthogonal to the propagation direction. In addition, spurious transmissions are bounded at least 40dB below unmodulated carrier power.[2] It is planned to enhance the signal-to-noise ratio in future replenishments of the EGNOS space segment, with the intention to improve the tracking performance at user level.

As stated in MOPS DO 229, the most relevant EGNOS signal characteristics are detailed hereafter:[5]

  • Carrier Phase Noise: The phase noise spectral density of the unmodulated carrier is such that a phase locked loop of 10Hz one-sided noise bandwidth is able to track the carrier to an accuracy of 0.1 radians rms.
  • Signal Spectrum: The broadcast signal is at GPS L1 frequency of 1575.42 MHz. At least 95% of the broadcast power is contained within a +/- 12MHz band centered at the L1 frequency. The bandwidth of the signal transmitted by an EGNOS satellite is at least 2.2MHz.
  • Doppler Shift: The Doppler shift, as perceived by a stationary user, on the signal broadcast by EGNOS GEOs is less than 40 meters per second (≈210 Hz at L1) in the worst case (at the end of life of the GEOs). The Doppler shift is due to the relative motion of the GEO.
  • Carrier Frequency Stability: The short term stability of the carrier frequency (square root of the Allan Variance) at the input of the user´s receiver antenna will be better than 5x10-11 over 1 to 10 seconds, excluding the effects of the ionosphere and Doppler.
  • Polarization: The broadcast signal is right-handed circularly polarized. The ellipticity will be no worse than 2 dB for the angular range of ±9.1o from boresight.
  • Correlation Loss: Correlation loss is defined as the ratio of output powers from a perfect correlator for two cases: 1) the actual receiver EGNOS signal correlated against a perfect unfiltered PN reference, or 2) a perfect unfiltered PN signal normalized to the same total power as the EGNOS signal in case 1, correlated against a perfect unfiltered PN reference. The correlation loss resulting from modulation imperfections and filtering inside the EGNOS satellite payload is less than 1 dB.

Navigation Payload Specifications

The following tables show key performance parameters of the Inmarsat-3 and Artemis Satellite Navigation Payloads:[6] [7]

Inmarsat-3 Artemis
L-Band EIRP at edge of coverage (dBw) 27.5 >27
BandWidth 2.2MHz 4MHz
Polarisation RHCP RHCP
Frequency Stability (over 10s) 4.3x10-11(AOR-E), 1.1x10-11 (AOR-W)) 2x10-12

The measured parameters were tested after launch of the specified satellites and, in the case of Artemis, payload specifications were verified from ESA´s Redu ground station in Belgium during the In-Orbit Test (IOT) campaign.

SBAS Signal Generators

Nowadays, there exists operational commercial off-the-shelf equipment to generate the SBAS signal to be uplinked to the GEO for relay.[8]

In addition, there are other flexible platforms useful to generate test signals for development and evaluation of user SBAS receivers.[9] These products allow to select specific navigation satellite systems, to define influencing error sources, to choose signal frequency and modulations schemes as well as the RF Front end and filter characteristics.



  1. ^ SARPS Amendment 77, Annex 10 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, Aeronautical Telecommunications: International Standards and Recommended Practices, Volume 1, Radio Navigation Aids, November 2002.
  2. ^ a b c EGNOS Open Service Definition Document
  3. ^ EGNOS Safety of Life Service Definition Document
  4. ^ EGNOS User Guide for Developers
  5. ^ a b Minimum Operational Performance Standards for Global Positioning System/Wide Area Augmentation System Airbone Equipment
  6. ^ Inmarsat-3 Satellite Navigation Payload; G.V. Kinal & O. Razumovsky (Inmarsat, London, United Kingdom)
  7. ^ The ESA Artemis Satellite-Navigation Mission: In Orbit Testing and Use in EGNOS; J.Ventura Traverset, P.Y.Dussauze, C.Montefusco & F.Torán (GNSS-1 Project Office, ESA, Toulouse, France); C.Lezy, F.Absolonne, B.Demelenne (ESA Redu Station, Redu, Belgium); A.Bird (Artemis Project, ESA/ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands)
  8. ^ Novatel GUS-Type 1 Signal Generation Product Sheet
  9. ^ Spirent GSS4100 Signal Generator Product Reference Sheet