Closing out a productive year with SDX release 17.12

The year 2017 will soon be coming to an end and looking back at the many improvements we’ve built into our GNSS simulator, we can safely say, “mission accomplished”. Yet there are still a few days remaining to roll out one final “17” release of SDX… so here it is!

So what’s in store for users of SDX 17.12?

Support for 3D antenna patterns

Engineers working with GNSS-enabled technology are often obligated to implement a broad range of antenna patterns, from simple to complex ones. Examples that come to mind are when designing optimal antenna form factors, testing anti-jamming capabilities, or creating equipment for specific environmental applications.

With release 17.12, all SDX users benefit from a 3D upgrade to gain antenna patterns, as well as—new feature!—custom 3D phase offset antenna patterns. These new options replace the previous ones found in the vehicle’s antenna settings.

The new graph UI for 3D Antenna Patterns

A 3D gain or offset antenna pattern is expressed with a graph displaying either the gain or the phase offset, through the 360 degrees azimuth and -90 to 90 degrees elevation, thus creating a full 3D sphere mapping around the antenna.

The CSV import-export options bring customization control over the 3D antenna patterns as well. CSV files are composed of a two-dimensional matrix of values; SDX interpolates between specified azimuth/elevation points thus covering the whole 3D space. The matrix can be of any size; SDX automatically detects the number of rows and columns while importing your data, thus offering convenient flexibility.

The CSV Import/Export function for 3D antenna patterns in SDX 17.12

This enables quick and easy setups, while providing fine-grained control to users requiring large mappings that depict complex patterns.

Master → Slave Configuration Broadcast

One of the most powerful features of SDX is its synchronization capabilities. Along with the timing improvements that were part of the last release, we continue to further refine this feature set in this latest version of SDX. As a result, it is now possible to push a SDX scenario configuration from the master instance to all slave instances. This unique feature brings obvious workflow improvements to any simulation setup.

The new configuration push options

We have also added exclusion options to enable control of the simulation parameters to be broadcast. For example, one particular application could require distinct vehicle trajectories between all instances, but use a single, common, shared scenario configuration. This configuration can now be replicated quickly and easily—among all instances by instructing SDX to exclude certain parameters during the configuration broadcast.

GLONASS improvements: leap second and health settings

This release of SDX also adds improvements as well as new features for GLONASS constellation users. Leap Second Events can now be simulated: not only with positive values, but with negative ones as well. In addition, the health of GLONASS satellites can now be modified while the simulation is running.

Wrapping up 2017 — and looking ahead

While we can’t guarantee that we’ll ship as many updates to SDX in the coming year as compared to 2017, we can assure you that we’ll evolve it as much—if not more! Here’s a hint: we already have major updates in the works that are bound to be released in the coming months. So let’s say it: 2018 will be another great year for SDX users.