Verifying ADS-B navigation information through Doppler shift measurements

Nirnimesh Ghose, Loukas Lazos

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

6 Scopus citations


Recent efforts to modernize aviation traffic control have mandated the gradual replacement of the existing analogue radar system with a next-generation (NextGen) digital one. Part of this NextGen system is the Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) standard. ADS-B aims at improving aviation safety by enabling aircraft broadcast navigation information. However, the current ADS-B standard does not provide mechanisms for verifying the integrity of navigation broadcasts. Consequently, aircraft trajectories can be easily spoofed. In this paper, we address the problem of verifying the navigation information of ADS-B transmissions. Fundamentally, this is a classical message integrity problem that can be addressed with cryptographic methods. However, cryptographic primitives are not part of ADS-B, primarily due to standardization and key management challenges. To address the shortcomings of ADS-B, we propose a PHY-layer verification method that exploits RF attributes of ADS-B transmissions to verify the aircraft's velocity and position. Specifically, we exploit the short coherence time of the wireless channel and the Doppler spread phenomenon to detect spoofed ADS-B messages broadcasted by a rogue ground station. We show that the security offered by our verification method is equivalent to the hardness of under defied quadratic equation systems, which are used in public-key cryptography.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication34th Digital Avionics Systems Conference, DASC 2015
Subtitle of host publicationImpact of Global Mandates on Avionics Research and Development
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
ISBN (Electronic)9781479989409
StatePublished - Oct 28 2015
Event34th Digital Avionics Systems Conference, DASC 2015 - Prague, Czech Republic
Duration: Sep 13 2015Sep 17 2015

Publication series

NameAIAA/IEEE Digital Avionics Systems Conference - Proceedings
ISSN (Print)2155-7195
ISSN (Electronic)2155-7209


Other34th Digital Avionics Systems Conference, DASC 2015
Country/TerritoryCzech Republic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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