Impacts of forest spatial structure on variation of the multipath phenomenon of navigation satellite signals
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The GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) receivers are commonly used in forest management in order to determine objects coordinates, area or length assessment and many other tasks which need accurate positioning. Unfortunately, the forest structure strongly limits access to satellite signals, which makes the positioning accuracy much weak comparing to the open areas. The main reason for this issue is the multipath phenomenon of satellite signal. It causes radio waves reflections from surrounding obstacles so the signal do not reach directly to the GNSS receiver’s antenna. Around 50% of error in GNSS positioning in the forest is because of multipath effect. In this research study, an attempt was made to quantify the forest stand features that may influence the multipath variability. The ground truth data was collected in six Forest Districts located in different part of Poland. The total amount of data was processed for over 2,700 study inventory plots with performed GNSS measurements. On every plot over 25 forest metrics were calculated and over 25 minutes of raw GNSS observations (1500 epochs) were captured. The main goal of this study was to find the way of multipath quantification and search the relationship between multipath variability and forest structure. It was reported that forest stand merchantable volume is the most important factor which influence the multipath phenomenon. Even though the similar geodetic class GNSS receivers were used it was observed significant difference of multipath values in similar conditions.
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