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Radio’s place in positioning – Techniques and Technology

Brought to you by The Location Group, The Radio Technology Group

In the first of two CW webinars on radio positioning, we look at methods for using radio signals to derive a position and consider how cellular signals in particular have been exploited.

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About the event

In the first of two CW webinars on radio positioning, we look at methods for using radio signals to derive a position and consider how cellular signals in particular have been exploited.

When radio systems are designed specifically for positioning, the signals can be designed to make the most of the techniques used for location. Our first speaker will describe the most widely used radio positioning methods and see how well they can (or can’t!) cope with challenging environments.
Cellular signals are designed to cope with these challenging environments and have been used for positioning for a quarter of a century. Our second talk will explore how these signals have been used to assist and enable positioning.

This informal webinar will be chaired by Bob Cockshott from The KTN and CW Location SIG Champion.  Delegates will be encouraged to submit their own questions to draw on the speakers expertise and experiences.

21st July at 15:00 - 'Radio’s place in positioning – Tracking and Sleuthing’

The second online event in this series will feature a talk from Omnisense on how short-range radio technology may be used for high accuracy relative positioning and tracking for worker safety in the new world of Covid-19 social distancing. Our second presentation will be from Inmarsat and will explore how aviation satellite communication data helped to identify the flight path of Malaysian Airlines flight MH370. Click here to learn more and to register.

You can follow @CambWireless on Twitter and tweet about this event using #CWWebinar.


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The information supplied below may be subject to change before the event.


Welcome from our CEO, Simon Mead


Introduction from Chair Bob Cockshott, The KTN


Michael Jones, Roke Manor, 'Introduction to Emitter Geolocation'

Mike's talk will give an introduction to radio geolocation techniques, covering the traditional techniques of TDOA and AOA. The challenges of geolocation in urban and multipath environments will be discussed, and we will touch on some modern techniques using machine learning and augmented reality.


Dr Chris Marshall, 'Positioning with opportunistic cellular signals'

Cellular signals have many potential advantages for positioning use, as they are of high quality and reach deep indoors. Despite the cellular system being designed primarily for communication, rather than positioning, measurements of these signals can still give useful position information for many applications. Chris will discuss the limitations and possibilities, introduce experiences in the field, and draw out some lessons of general interest.


Panel session with both speakers


Closing remarks & webinar ends


Michael Jones - Lead for Array Processing group , Roke Manor Research

Michael leads the Array Processing group at Roke, where he is also a principal consultant engineer. He has over 20 years’ experience in a range of disciplines, including electronic warfare, signals intelligence, and radio navigation. He specialises in the simulation, modelling and hardware implementation of advanced signal processing algorithms, and his work is in operational service around the world.

Michael is a Fellow of the IET, a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Navigation, acts as Defence Editor for GPS World, and invited speaker at a number of international conferences.


Chris Marshall - Honorary Senior Research Fellow, University of Sussex

Dr Chris Marshall is Honorary Senior Research Fellow at Sussex University. He is currently exploring wireless positioning systems for the Internet of Things with the University. Following his graduation from Cambridge University and a PhD with Imperial College he has enjoyed and led numerous wireless R&D projects with Philips, from early integrated circuits for pocket pagers and for GSM, through to software receivers and services for geotagging photos with GPS. In recent years with u-blox he has been developing services and technologies for timing and positioning with cellular modems.

SIG Champions

David Bartlett - Senior Principal Engineer Positioning, u-blox UK

David Bartlett works in the positioning technology (R&D) group at u-blox with a focus on hybrid positioning: bringing together GNSS with terrestrial systems such as UWB and V2X, primarily in support of future autonomous vehicle, driverless car and robotics applications but also for IoT and indoor positioning. Prior to this he was CTO and co-founder of Omnisense delivering high precision indoor IoT tracking solutions. He also worked at Cambridge Positioning systems with a focus on cellular positioning and network aided GNSS techniques.

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Bob Cockshott - Quantum Lead, PNT Lead, The KTN

After 25 years in the space industry working mainly on electro-optical payloads, Bob has spent the last 13 years in the government-funded Knowledge Transfer Network, supporting business in position, navigation and timing, and more recently also quantum technology. Bob has taken a special interest in GNSS vulnerability, and has organised international conferences on vulnerability and its mitigation. Bob is a member of the Cabinet Office PNT Technical Group and chairs the Royal Institute of Navigation’s Technical Committee. Bob is a member of the International Time and Sync Forum Steering Group and is also a Cambridge Wireless Location Based Services SIG Champion.

Ben Tarlow - Senior Staff Engineer, Qualcomm Technologies International

Ben has worked in positioning for 15 years, developing algorithms for satellite, cellular and other terrestrial RF technologies. At Qualcomm, Ben works in the Advanced Algorithms group, where current research areas in location are data fusion, use of sensor data for positioning and fitness applications; one day, he hopes to be given the remit to explore the area of olfactory positioning. Ben has a background in Pure Mathematics and a PhD in Combinatorics. He has over 20 different patents filed or granted, mostly on subjects relating to positioning.

Mark Beach - Professor of Radio Systems Engineering , University of Bristol (Communication Systems & Networks Research Group)

Mark Beach received his PhD for research addressing the application of Smart Antenna techniques to GPS from the University of Bristol in 1989, where he subsequently joined as a member of academic staff. He was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 1996, Reader in 1998 and Professor in 2003. He was Head of the Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering from 2006 to 2010, then spearheaded Bristol’s hosting of the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Communications . He is the Co-Director of this centre. He leads research in the field of enabling technologies for the delivery of 5G and beyond wireless connectivity; which includes the recent award of an EPSRC Prosperity Partnership in the field of Secure Wireless Agile Networks (SWAN). Mark’s current research activities are delivered through the Communication Systems and Networks Group, forming a key component within Bristol’s Smart Internet Lab. He has over 30 years of physical layer wireless research embracing the application of Spread Spectrum technology for cellular systems, adaptive or smart antenna for capacity and range extension in wireless networks, MIMO aided connectivity for through-put enhancement, experimental evaluation and optimization of Massive MIMO, Millimetre Wave technologies as well as flexible RF technologies for SDR modems. With a strong industrially focused research portfolio, he is also the School Research Impact Director. 

Brian Collins - Managing Consultant, BSC Associates

Brian has designed antennas for applications including radio and TV broadcasting, base stations, handsets and consumer products, and has operated his own consultancy firm for the last 12 years. He has published more than 70 papers on antenna topics and contributed chapters to several recent textbooks. He operates a small consultancy company, chairs the Antenna Interface Standards Group and is an Honorary Visiting Professor in the School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science at Queen Mary, University of London.

Peter Relph - Consultant, PA Consulting Group

Peter Relph has worked in the wireless industry for 30 years and spent the last 22 years as a radio systems engineer with PA Consulting Group. He originally graduated from UCL in Electronics with Optoelectronics and since then has decreased his operating frequency, working on mm-wave radar systems at Philips Research, then a broad range of industries and applications with PA. His recent focus has been on cellular systems wider experience with satellite, Wifi, modern IoT and bespoke communications systems. Professional interests range from propagation modelling, RF system design and physical layer processing.

Vidhya Sridhar - Consultant, TTP plc

Vidhya Sridhar is a consultant at The Technology Partnership (TTP) Plc. She has a background in digital signal processing and physical layer design and development. In her PhD at Imperial College London, she carried out research on array signal processing techniques with applications in 5G and defence. Prior to her PhD, she spent three years working on physical layer design and development in LTE and WiMAX at Broadcom (India) and Alcatel Lucent (India) respectively.

Peter Topham - Principal Engineer, Qualcomm Technologies International

Peter has more than 30 years experience of RF and high-speed circuit design, taking chips into production ranging from FM Band II through cellular, Bluetooth and on to UWB at 10GHz. He has been with Qualcomm for 7 years, specialising in low-power RF design for portable and wearable products.

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