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The NEO-M8N-0-10 by u-blox: How Does It Work?

u-blox is a top manufacturer of RF-related devices. NEO-M8N-0-10 is one of such devices and like most RF Receivers, it is designed to take in a modulated Radio Frequency (RF), demodulate the same and pass it along for the data to be processed in the system.

However, the NEO-M8N-0-10 is a special type of RF Receiver, in the sense that it integrates a Concurrent GNSS Module. According to u-blox, the manufacturer, the essence of making the GNSS Module to function concurrently is to help speed up the process of receiving, demodulating and retrieving important data from the modulated Radio Frequency (RF).

By this concurrency, the NEO-M8N-0-10 Concurrent GNSS Module would now be able to work with and interface with other positioning systems, such as BeiDou and GLONASS.

What is a GNSS Module?

That brings us to the big question of what a GNSS Module is. To put it simply, it is a standard for the satellite systems used for offering a global coverage of the autonomous geo-spatial positioning.

The full meaning is Global Navigation Satellite System.

The Concurrency is Built-In

NEO-M8N-0-10 GPS moudle

Although the manufacturer specifically made NEO-M8N-0-10 to be a concurrent type of GNSS Module; it can still function independently to a certain extent. It is because of the integration of several satellite systems into the GNSS Module. With the multiple satellite provisions, the capturing, transmission and decoupling of RF signals would be hastened up.

The idea is that when one of the GNSS satellite systems fails to function effectively, it wouldn’t necessarily hamper the performance of the (RF) receivers. Instead, the GNSS or RF receivers would port or switch to the next satellite system to continue picking signals.

Understanding how the NEO-8 Series of GNSS Modules Work

The NEO-8 series is where the NEO-M8N-0-10 belongs. It is a series of concurrent Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Modules, which have been put together to function even when one doesn’t live up to expectations.

Below are some of the benefits of this concurrency:

1. Customer-Specific Configurations

The wide range of supported satellite systems in NEO-M8N-0-10’s GNSS Module are optimized to meet the target customers’ needs. That is the reason why this series among many other things, supports spoofing detection with configurable interface settings; message integrity protection and geofencing.

These features are in place to help the NEO-M8N-0-10 make an easy-fitting to the different customer applications.

2. Excellent Positioning Accuracy

At the core of a satellite systems’ operation is the positioning accuracy. If the positioning is not accurate, it wouldn’t be possible to make global coverage.

Therefore, the positioning accuracy of the NEO-8 GNSS Module series is possible because of the support for multiple satellite systems. That way, uptime (availability), accuracy and redundancy are assured.

As a way of supporting the faster positioning of the satellite systems, NEO-M8N-0-10 supports the augmentation of the IMES, QZSS, and GAGAN. The augmentation is made to work together with the MSAS, WAAS and EGNOS.

3. NEO-M8N-0-10 has an Improved Acquisition Process

The process of acquiring the GNSS broadcast parameters, such as the almanac plus time, the ephemeris and the rough positioning might take a lot of time.

However, the time-spent might not be as much as expected because NEO-M8N-0-10 has simplified the process with the improved acquisition process.

It offers the faster acquisition process because of the support for the u-blox AssistNow. It is an assistance system that makes the NEO-8 Series of GNSS Modules to make an online connection that allows for the speedy reception and improved acquisition sensitivity.

NEO-M8N-0-10’s Augmentation Systems: What Do They Do?

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NEO-M8N-0-10 doesn’t work alone. Instead, it works with a variety of augmentation systems that are based on the satellite. Called the augmentation systems, they work by providing more options for the GNSS Modules to receive relevant signals in good time.

Examples of the augmentation systems are given below:

4. IMES

The full name is Indoor Messaging System. Manufactured in Japan, the IMES augmentation system is used implemented via low-power transmitters to make an indoor positioning reporting.

5. The Satellite-Based Augmentation Systems (SBAS)

The SBAS is another augmentation system that works by supporting the reception of the SBAS-specific broadcast signals.

Integrated in the SBAS are some other features that overall improves NEO-M8N-0-10’s functions. They are the:

  • Range Correction and Integrity: The satellite systems broadcast the range correction and integrity information through the satellite, as a way of helping NEO-M8N-0-10 and any other supported GNSS Receiver to enhance the availability.
  • GNSS Data Supplementation: NEO-M8N-0-10’s SBAS also supports the supplementation or interchanging of the GNSS data with either the wide-area GPS augmentation data or the regional augmentation data.

6. Differential GPS

Also called the D-GPS, the Differential GPS is another important augmentation system, aiding NEO-M8N-0-10’s GPS position accuracy.

7. The QZSS Augmentation System

The full name is Quasi-Zenith Satellite System. It receives and transmits the additional GPS L1 C/A signals, which are for the Pacific region covering both Australia and Japan.

The QZSS is also capable of empowering NEO-M8N-0-10’s GNSS (positioning) modules to make a concurrent reception and tracking of the signals. The positioning modules are connected with the GPS signals to make this concurrent operation.

Signal Integrity

It is one thing for a GPS or GNSS Module to transmit data and another thing for the same module to prevent third-party access.

It is for this reason that NEO-M8N-0-10 has been equipped with a messaging integrity protection feature that prevents the chances of a “man-in-the-middle attack” from happening.

The provided function here helps to find out if there has been any third-party access or tampering of the UBX message steam between the time it was sent from the receiver to the host.

NEO-M8N-0-10 has a Future-Proof Design

u-blox designed the NEO-M8N-0-10 with an “eye for the future.” In this regard, the manufactured spared no resources to ensure that this GNSS Module fits into more use cases in the future.

An example of a mechanism driving this is the internal flash, which allows for future or updated firmware to be added to the module.

Conclusion

NEO-M8N-0-10 simplifies the process of receiving, demodulating and transmitting RF-related data to the system. Rest assured that the varieties of built-in components and augmentation systems will go a long way to simplify how GNSS signals are received and transmitted to the GNSS receivers.