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International Journal of Navigation and Observation
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 946319, 15 pages
Research Article

Simplifying the Performance Analysis of the SPRT for GPS Acquisition

1Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University College Cork, College Rd., Cork, Ireland
2PLAN Group, Departement of Geomatics Engineering, University of Calgary, 2500 University Drive NW, Calgary, AB, Canada T2N 1N4

Received 18 August 2010; Revised 7 December 2010; Accepted 13 February 2011

Academic Editor: Abbas Mohammed

Copyright © 2011 Niamh O'Mahony et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A new approximation for the distribution of the probability ratio in a sequential probability ratio test (SPRT) using noncoherent integration across a full code period is presented. The new approximation is valid for the carrier-to-noise power ratios typically encountered in GPS acquisition (20 dB-Hz ≤ ≤ 50 dB-Hz), and it allows accurate theoretical performance analysis of the SPRT to be carried out for signals in this range, eliminating the need for lengthy simulations for each scenario under investigation. Thus, the SPRT performance can be readily compared to that of other acquisition strategies for receiver design. Previous approximations in the literature are not valid in the range 20 dB-Hz ≤ ≤ 50 dB-Hz.