An experimental test for detecting effective reflector height with GPS SNR data

Tunalıoğlu N., Altuntaş C.

EARTH SCIENCES RESEARCH JOURNAL, vol.26, no.1, pp.13-22, 2022 (SCI-Expanded)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 26 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.15446/esrj.v26n1.87003
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Fuente Academica Plus, Geobase, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Page Numbers: pp.13-22
  • Yıldız Technical University Affiliated: Yes


This study aims to estimate effective reflector heights and height differences using the basic geometrical principle of multipath theory by controlling the signal quality for estimations. The geometry of the reflecting signal allows computing the effective reflector height, which is extracted from where the signal reflects on the ground and arrives at the GPS antenna phase center. To achieve that, an experimental case with two stations was conducted in the snow-free environment and GPS receivers were mounted on reflectors, which allowed to measure daily in-situ reflector heights and artificial decrement variations. The reflections from the roof surface were tracked with the first-Fresnel zones. To validate the estimated reflector heights in a controlled test environment, twelve different combinations within four simulated scenarios as a combination of decrement values have been implemented and accuracy analysis was performed. Here, a vertical shift procedure on reflectors was applied. Meanwhile, the vertical shift amount was tracked in each computation to determine which reflected signal could be able to use for assigning reflector height as effective. Comparisons of the estimated heights and in-situ measurements show congruency with ±1.2 cm to ±8 cm accuracy. The best overall accuracy of the model among the four scenarios is computed as ±2.2 cm. When the vertical shift decrements are considered, the RMSE values are estimated within ±2.92 cm to ±3.96 cm. Although the RMSEs of the differences show a good agreement with estimated reflector heights, it is found that some reflector height estimations are statistically insignificant.