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Swift ​​Navigation ​​announces full BeiDou and Galileo support for ​​Piksi Multi

August 21, 2018  - By
The Piksi Multi GNSS receiver. (Photo: Swift Navigation)

The Piksi Multi GNSS receiver. (Photo: Swift Navigation)

Swift ​​Navigation has upgraded the firmware to ​​its flagship product — the Piksi Multi GNSS ​​receiver. This marks the sixth major release to Piksi Multi since it was launched in February 2017.

The upgrade is available free of charge to Swift customers. ​​

The firmware release also enhances Duro, the ruggedized version of the Piksi Multi receiver housed in a military-grade, weatherproof enclosure for long-term outdoor deployments.

Swift ​​Navigation is a ​​San ​​Francisco-based ​​tech ​​firm building centimeter-accurate ​​GNSS ​​technology and a cloud-based corrections service​​ to ​​power ​​a ​​world ​​of ​​autonomous ​​vehicles, the company said. ​​

The Duro enclosure. (Photo: Swift Navigation)

The Duro enclosure. (Photo: Swift Navigation)

Firmware Release 2.0 for Piksi Multi and Duro supports two additional major satellite constellations — the Chinese constellation (BeiDou B1/B2) which, once completed, will contain 37 satellites and the European Union-based constellation (Galileo E1/E5b), which will eventually consist of 30 satellites.

Adding to the existing GPS, GLONASS and SBAS constellations already supported by Swift’s GNSS receivers means that users will have more access and visibility from satellite systems across the globe.

Piksi Multi’s performance will further improve over time as the total of 136 satellites planned for these major constellations are fully deployed.

The addition of BeiDou and Galileo constellations creates more robust positioning performance in a variety of challenging skyview environments and puts Piksi Multi on par with leading industry receivers costing up to ten times a much.

With this 2.0 release, Piksi Multi is feature-complete, and Swift’s engineering team has delivered on planned product features on the Piksi Multi Product Summary.

Firmware ​​Version ​​2.0 ​​Enhanced Receiver Performance Highlights

MSM Messages 4-7. The ​​new ​​firmware ​​adds support for RTCM 3.2 Multi Signal Messages (MSM). Though Swift devices already support RTCM 3.1, the addition of MSM allows for another flavor of differential corrections supported by BeiDou and Galileo, while also supporting both GPS and GLONASS with MSM new messages. MSM also allows for interoperability with other existing third-party GNSS receivers for all modern signals and constellations.

Fix Improvements. Firmware 2.0 provides Piksi Multi and Duro improvements on fixing in long base lines in poor atmospheric conditions, making the devices more resilient to Ionospheric effects during periods of high Ionospheric activity.

Higher Baud Rate Support for UART. New baud rates were added including 460800 and 921600.

Acquisition Improvements. Enhancements made allow Piksi Multi and Duro to power on to a usable signal more quickly and acquire satellites in start-up mode faster, by several seconds.

“The growing Swift engineering team has been hard at work developing Piksi Multi to its full potential,” said Samir Kapoor, executive vice president of engineering and product at Swift Navigation. “With support for all modern satellite constellations and multiple performance improvements, Piksi Multi offers unmatched affordability, priced at ten times the savings yet on par with other leading GNSS receivers.”

“Swift’s vision of making GNSS devices that are centimeter-accurate, with fast RTK convergence times and robust positioning performance all at highly-competitive prices has come to fruition,” Kapoor said. “With Piksi Multi feature complete, we look forward to adding to our line of products with additional offerings later this year.” ​