Robust Gaussian Process Regression for Real-Time High Precision GPS Signal Enhancement
Ming Lin, Xiaomin Song, Qi Qian, Hao Li, Liang Sun, Shenghuo Zhu and Rong Jin
Satellite-based positioning system such as GPS often suffers from large amount of noise that degrades the positioning accuracy dramatically especially in real-time applications. In this work, we consider a data-mining approach to enhance the GPS signal. We build a large-scale high precision GPS receiver grid system to collect real-time GPS signals for training. The Gaussian Process (GP) regression is chosen to model the vertical Total Electron Content (vTEC) distribution of the ionosphere of the Earth. Our experiments show that the noise in the real-time GPS signals often exceeds the breakdown point of the conventional robust regression methods resulting in sub-optimal system performance. We propose a three-step approach to address this challenge. In the first step we perform a set of signal validity tests to separate the signals into clean and dirty groups. In the second step, we train an initial model on the clean signals and then reweigting the dirty signals based on the residual error. A final model is retrained on both the clean signals and the reweighted dirty signals. In the theoretical analysis, we prove that the proposed three-step approach is able to tolerate much higher noise level than the vanilla robust regression methods if two reweighting rules are followed. We validate the superiority of the proposed method in our real-time high precision positioning system against several popular state-of-the-art robust regression methods. Our method achieves centimeter positioning accuracy in the benchmark region with probability $78.4%$ , outperforming the second best baseline method by a margin of $8.3%$. The benchmark takes 6 hours on 20,000 CPU cores or 14 years on a single CPU.
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