Skydel Simulation Engine

Skydel Simulation Engine

  • Skydel GNSS Simulation Software
  • Skydel Software Screen Shot

Flexible GNSS simulatorFully-featured, software-defined

A Shift In The Paradigm

The way the world thinks about GNSS simulation today is not the same as even a few years ago, thanks to leaps in technology with software-defined radios and COTS components. Compared to traditional FPGA-based simulators, Orolia’s advanced solutions are inherently more flexible, scalable, customizable, upgradeable and cost-effective. To top it off, the Skydel Simulation Engine is packed with robust features and capabilities. What are you waiting for?

Orolia’s Skydel Simulation Engine offers the best of both worlds: the performance you expect from a top-grade GNSS simulator, coupled with the economy of scale and flexibility of the GPU/SDR architecture.

Packed with a rich feature set including a 1000 Hz simulation iteration rate, remote control from user-defined scripts, and a virtually unlimited number of channels, Skydel offers unmatched flexibility and scalability.

And all of this, packaged in a well-thought-out user interface.

Skydel is a fully-featured, software-defined GNSS simulator.

With Orolia’s Skydel, you can either:

Select a turnkey system

Orolia GSG-8 GNSS Simulator
GSG-8 Advanced GNSS Simulator

Select the software only and use/reuse your own hardware.


In both cases, you obtain a complete, real-time GNSS simulator using repurposable hardware. The Skydel Simulation Engine supports multiple constellations (GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, BeiDou) and multiple frequencies (upper and lower L-band).

Skydel is also available through Orolia's partners who can create specially tailored solutions for your specific needs.

The Concept Behind Skydel

Traditional GNSS simulators rely on FPGAs and custom-designed hardware which are either too expensive or provide limited capabilities.

Orolia’s Skydel Simulation Engine uses GPU-accelerated computing and software-defined radios (SDR). This architecture is based on mass-produced hardware which benefits from an economy of scale and high performance.

Moreover, it enables additional capabilities only possible with a software-defined approach to GNSS simulation.



Create economy of scale and eliminate hardware dependency. COTS hardware free users from dedicated platforms, while generic hardware allows to repurpose equipment for different projects. Skydel solutions are scalable and easily upgraded.

Exploit the unique capabilities of a software-defined GNSS simulator. Dynamic jammers, custom waveforms, faster-than-realtime simulation and selectable RF/IF frequency are just a few possibilities enabled by the software-defined approach.

Key Features


Powerful Automation

Get ultimate control with Skydel's powerful API. Easy to use and comprising hundreds of commands, this API brings an unparalleled level of control over the simulation. It allows the user to build highly complex, elaborate and repeatable scenarios. Skydel comes with open source client libraries for Python, C# and C++.



Trajectory simulation from the ground up to GEO orbits. The user-friendly interface allows you to configure Earth-orbiting spacecraft trajectories, atmospheric models, multiple GNSS constellations and 3D antenna patterns.


Differential GNSS and Multi-Vehicle Simulation

Multi-vehicle positioning data can greatly improve GNSS location accuracy. For example, in Real-Time Kinematics (RTK), a rover precise location is computed by using base station position data.

Orolia’s Skydel does multi-constellation, multi-signal differential GNSS by synchronizing multiple simulators. For RTK applications, each instance of Skydel will simulate the GNSS signals for either vehicle.

Key Features

  • 1000Hz simulation iteration rate
  • Low-latency HIL
  • Live sky time synchronization
  • On-the-fly scenario reconfiguration
  • 6 Degrees of Freedom (DoF) receiver trajectories
  • Flexible licensing
  • In-field upgradability
  • High-end performance (precision, resolution, ultra-high dynamic motion)
  • Simulate hundreds of satellites in real time, using off-the-shelf graphics cards (GPU)
  • Multi-vehicle simulation
  • Comprehensive and intuitive API (Python, C# and C++ open source client)
  • Scalable and highly flexible architecture using software-defined radios

Signal Propagation and Errors Simulation

  • Multipath
  • Additive pseudorange ramps
  • Satellite clock error modification
  • Navigation message errors
  • Multiple ionospheric models
  • Multiple tropospheric models
  • Antenna pattern models
  • Relativistic effects
  • Pseudorange/ephemeris errors
  • Custom signals injection


  • GPS: L1C, L1-C/A, L1-P, L2-P, L2C, L5
  • GLONASS: G1, G2
  • Galileo: E1, E5a, E5b, E5AltBOC
  • BeiDou-2: B1, B2
  • Beidou-3: B1C, B2a

Signal Specifications

  • Pseudorange Accuracy - ±0.001m
  • Pseudorange Rate - ±0.001m/s
  • Inter-channel bias - zero
  • Spurious transmission ≤ 45 dBic
  • Harmonics ≤ 45 dBic
  • Signal Dynamics
    • Maximum relative velocity: 1,500,000 m/s
    • Maximum relative acceleration: No limits
    • Maximum relative jerk: No limits
  • 1000 Hz iteration rate
  • RF Signal Level (GNSS)
    • Power Accuracy: +/- 0.5dB
    • Output reference power: -80 to -50 dBm, 0.1dB resolution
    • Dynamic range (relative to reference power): -45 to +30 dB
    • Total range: -125 to -20 dBm
  • RF Signal Level (Jamming)
    • +0 to +110 J/S (with signal (S) reference power at -130dBm)
Click The Screenshots For Enlarged Versions

Advanced Spoofing

The release of this feature means that without any additional hardware, users now have game-changing tools at their disposal to support spoofing simulation - something other solutions on the market have not attained. Advanced spoofing on Orolia's software-defined platform allows users to simulate multiple spoofers simultaneously. Each spoofer can generate any GNSS signal and has an independent trajectory and antenna pattern. Skydel software automatically determines signal dynamics between each spoofer and receiver antenna, so no time goes to waste setting up your scenario.

Advanced Interference Simulation

Skydel’s unique architecture delivers the most flexible and powerful GNSS interference testing solution on the market. With the Advanced Jamming module enabled, you can create interference transmitters, assign them signals and trajectories, and watch them interact with the receiver from within the map panel, all in real time. To complete Skydel's use as an interference testing solution, the powerful and easy-to-use Advanced Jamming Module also enables the creation of custom RF waveforms.

Advanced jamming is completely integrated into Skydel. There’s no need for additional and complicated connections with third-party modules. Everything is achieved through the same unique software interface.

  • Create user-defined waveforms. Combine Chirp, CW, BOC, AWGN, BPSK, and pulse interference modulation to create custom, complex interference waveforms.
  • Create multiple real-time jammers. Up to dozens of interferences can be generated in real time.
  • Transmitters can be simple, or dynamic. Skydel’s dynamic jammers can change position relative to the receiver as the simulation progresses. Skydel automatically calculates the resulting signal at the receiver antenna in real time.
  • No need for additional hardware: the same SDR used for generating GNSS signal are used to generate interferences. Join two dual-output SDR and cover the two GNSS bands with added jammers.
  • Playback your own library of signals, interference and jammers (IQ file playback)
Advanced Jammers in action
Advanced Jammers in action. During the GNSS simulation, Skydel calculates the signal at the receiver antenna and takes into account the transmitter antenna pattern, propagation loss, and receiver antenna pattern. Click to enlarge.


Multiple Synchronized Trajectories

The software-defined nature of Skydel enables multiple instances of the GNSS simulator to run on the same –or multiple– computer(s). This feature offers research and test labs interesting possibilities for creating advanced simulation setups.

When synchronizing simulators, parameters such as radio and antenna settings, vehicle trajectories, or interference transmitters can be shared between all instances. For other use cases, Skydel users can decide which parameters are automatically synced between connected simulators.

Possible applications of connected simulators include the simulation of:

  • Differential GNSS, such as Real-Time Kinematics (RTK), where Skydel instances are used to simulate both Rover(s) and Base
  • Spoofing, to test –and help mitigate– its effects on a GNSS receiver
  • Multi-antenna vehicles, for example in the case of space launch vehicles and other rockets
  • Attitude measurement using GNSS signals
  • Simple or complex arrays of GNSS receivers


Example showing SDX GNSS simulators used to recreate 4 drones using Real-Time Kinematics (RTK) for precise positioning
Example showing Skydel GNSS simulators used to recreate 4 drones using Real-Time Kinematics (RTK) for precise positioning


Skydel is packed with a rich feature set — multi-constellation/ multi-frequency signal generation, remote control from userdefined scripts, and integrated interference generation.
pdf - 526 KB—  September 4, 2019 [ Permalink ]
The Orolia Skydel User Manual explains how to configure and use Skydel with different hardware setups and operating systems. If you purchased a turnkey solution from Orolia or one of its Value-Added Resellers, you were provided with additional documentation specific to your hardware setup.
External Link—  January 1, 2020 [ Permalink ]

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