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Resilient Positioning using Private Mobile Radio for Safety-Critical Applications

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  • Full or part time
    Dr Paul Groves
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Duration – 3.5 years

Funding –The scholarship covers UCL registration fees and provides a stipend of £16,057 per annum tax free. Travel expenses and research equipment will also be paid for.

Funding Body Terrafix Ltd and UCL

Vacancy Information

Applications are invited for a PhD studentship, funded by Terrafix Ltd and UCL, UK funded project that seeks to develop a positioning capability for an ad-hoc private mobile radio (PMR) communications network to enhance positioning resilience for safety-critical and mission-critical applications.

Studentship Description
Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) are the dominant positioning technology in today’s world. However, they suffer from poor reception indoors and in dense urban areas and are vulnerable to jamming and interference with jammers easily bought online. Criminals use GNSS jammers to defeat vehicle tracking systems and location-based charging systems. Employees use jammers to prevent their employers from tracking them. GNSS jamming is also used by hostile states and could be deployed by terrorist groups. For safety-critical users, such as the emergency and security services, advanced rail signalling systems and ships approaching harbour, lack of resilient positioning can put lives at risk.
This project will investigate the addition of a positioning capability to an ad-hoc private mobile radio (PMR) communications network to provide a backup to GNSS positioning. This network, currently providing both tracking and communications, is a development by Terrafix so the protocols can easily be modified to optimise positioning performance. You will assess different ranging protocols and measurement techniques; develop and assess positioning algorithms for use with fixed base stations; develop and test simple techniques for mitigating multipath interference and non-line-of-sight reception in urban and indoor environments; assess positioning performance on land and in harbours; and develop and test algorithms for cooperative positioning of multiple users in ad-hoc networks.
Skills you will learn include design, development and testing of algorithms, software development, signal processing, experimental design and implementation, data analysis and both technical and interpersonal communications. You will also have the opportunity to build a network of contacts within the positioning community.
This project will be supervised by Dr Paul Groves (UCL) and Dr Bob Mason (Terrafix).

Person Specification
The applicants should possess or expect to receive a good honours degree (1st Class or 2:1) in physics, maths, computer science or engineering.

Applications are invited from UK citizens residing in the UK or an EU country for the past three years and citizens of other EU countries, residing in UK for the past three years. The successful applicant will be asked to undergo UK security clearance.

Start Date

The student must start between 1 March and 31 August 2016.

Application Procedure

Applicants should send a covering letter and CV to p.groves “at”

The successful applicant will then have to apply online to UCL by submitting the PhD application form, available from and clicking on the Apply now button. Please name Dr Paul Groves as the proposed supervisor.

Closing Date 22 Feb 2016

How good is research at University College London in General Engineering?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 53.70

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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