The International GNSS Service (IGS), a worldwide federation of agencies involved in high-precision GNSS) applications, has launched Real-Time Service (RTS). The RTS is a global scale GNSS orbit and clock correction service that enables realtime precise point positioning (PPP) and related applications requiring access to IGS low latency products. The RTS is offered in beta as a GPS-only service for the development and testing of applications.
GLONASS products are initially provided on an experimental basis and will be included within the service before the end of 2013 as the RTS reaches its full operating capability, according to the IGS Institute. Other GNSS constellations will be added as they become available. The RTS is operated as a public service, providing free access to subscribers. Interested parties are invited to visit the service’s website.
Russian rockets will assist in the deployment of the European Galileo navigation satellite network, head of the European Space Agency (ESA) Permanent Mission in Russia Rene Pischel said. The rst two experimental Galileo satellites were launched with Soyuz rockets from Baikonur, he said. http://rbth.ru/
Two more Southeast Asian countries have signed up to the Beidou satellite navigation system. Laos and Brunei will be adopting the navigation system in an initial stage through research and co-operation agreements, China’s Ministry of Science and Technology said. Earlier, Thailand became the rst overseas customer of China’s home-made navigation system when the two countries signed a similar deal. The system already covers all of Southeast Asia and aims to cover the entire planet by 2020. The Ministry of Science and Technology did not indicate the cost of implementing the system in Laos or Brunei. The 2-billion-yuan bill (HK$2.5 billion) of bringing the system to Thailand is to be largely met by the Chinese government, Xinhua said. www.scmp.com
When California corrections of cials found what they described as alarming defects in half of the GPS monitors worn by sex offenders and other parolees statewide, they moved immediately to break the contract with the company that supplied them. Their concerns justi ed refusing to give the company more work, but he also ruled the state should not have given its existing work to a rm without competitive bidding. Judge Timothy Frawley’s decision upheld California’s decision to reject the low bid from a division of 3M Co. for a statewide parole monitoring contract worth $51 million. But Frawley said GPS program director Denise Milano failed to show 3M’s equipment already in use created a public emergency. www.latimes.com
China is promoting the use of its homegrown Beidou Navigation Satellite System and plans to make it available for commercial mobile phone services. In a Xinhua report, Yang Qiangwen, a leading scientist with the China Satellite Navigation Of ce, said the Beidou system has been performing well and its navigation precision improving steadily since it opened up the service to Asia-Paci c users on December’12. “We are seeking favorable policies and attracting investment to promote the technology for public use. It will not be long before mobile phones adopt the Beidou system,” said Yang. www.zdnet.com
Russia has successfully launched a satellite for the GLONASS navigation system recently. After reaching a designated orbit, the satellite will complete several weeks of commissioning and testing before entering regular service. http://en.ria.ru
The US Army is working to limit its dependence on GPS by developing the next generation of navigation technology, including a tiny autonomous chip, the director of the Pentagon’s research agency said. DARPA, the research group behind a range of spy tech and which helped invent the Internet, was also the driving force behind the creation of the GPS, director Arati Prabhakar said at a press conference. Researchers at DARPA and the University of Michigan have created a new system that works without satellites to determine position, time and direction, all contained within a eight-cubic-millimeter chip. The tiny chip holds three gyroscopes, three accelerometers and an atomic clock, which, together, work as an autonomous navigation system. Prabhakar emphasized there “will not be a monolithic new solution, it will be a series of technologies to track and x time and position from external sources.” http://zeenews.india.com
South Korea is finalising plans to track down and block GPS jamming signals emitted by its neighbor N Korea. Relevant technologies developed by the government’s Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI) will apparently be transferred to a private rm, which will be tasked with setting up the system. www.theregister.co.uk
The British Antarctic Survey (BAS) has built advanced surveying equipment into javelin-like projectiles that they intend to drop into some of the most inaccessible parts of Antarctica in order to accurately measure the continent. The BAS has assembled 25 of the pieces of the equipment in order to track the progress of the Pine Island Glacier (PIG), one of the largest and fastest-moving ice streams on Antarctica. The hardy javelins contain advanced GPS equipment that will allow the BAS to monitor the speed and nature of the ice movement. The darts are being dropped from aircraft ying over the region, and are equipped with parachutes and small ‘ice brake’ ns to lessen the force of their impact with the ice and stop them from driving too deeply. www.surveyequipment.com
The economic bene t gained from the use of GLONASS technology in Russia is estimated at over $25 864 billion, annually, said President of the GLONASS noncommercial partnership Alexander Gurko. http://rbth.ru
A permanent GPS receiver station was opened at Weather Radar Station, Jaisalmer recently to study the earth’s plate movement. The GPS receiver station is the rst in the state. As many as 250 such stations would be opened in the country. Three more such stations in Kota, Bikaner and Ganganagar will be opened soon. http:// articles.timeso ndia.indiatimes.com
The Japanese government has ordered three navigation satellites from Mitsubishi Electric Corp., expanding the country’s program to augment GPS navigation signals for users in the Asia-Paci c region. Japan’s Cabinet Of ce announced the expansion of the Quasi-Zenith Satellite System on March 29, approving a $526 million contract with Mitsubishi Electric for the construction of three satellites for launch before the end of 2017. The Cabinet Of ce, which is chaired by the Japanese prime minister, approved another contract with a special-purpose company led by NEC Corp. to operate QZSS for 15 years. www.space ightnow.com