Dec 2016 | No Comment

New GNSS weather data sets from TechDemoSat-1

New weather datasets, which could prove highly valuable for weather forecasting and for longer term climate monitoring, have just been made available from the Space GNSS Receiver-Remote Sensing Instrument (SGR-ReSI) instrument on board TechDemoSat-1, a small technology demonstration satellite launched by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL) in 2014.

With support from the European Space Agency, SSTL and the National Oceanography Centre (NOC) are continuing to work on the data received from TechDemoSat-1 and have been steadily improving the calibration of the measurements and researching new techniques and applications.

Looking to the future, the NASA CYGNSS mission due to launch later this year will fly 8 satellites carrying SSTL’s SGRReSI instrument, with the particular focus to measure the winds within cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons. The SGR-ReSI instrument was developed by SSTL and is able to calculate TechDemoSat-1’s position and speed in much the same way as does a car-based SatNav, by measuring ranges and triangulating its position from high altitude GNSS satellites orbiting 20,000km above the satellite itself. The SGR-ReSI also carries a high gain nadir (downward-pointing) antenna to utilise a technique called GNSS reflectometry where the GNSS signals scattered off the Earth’s surface are collected and measured.

GPS reflections are not only collected by the SGR-ReSI over the ocean, but over land too where measurements to date show strong variations that could contain valuable geophysical information about the land surface. For instance, healthy vegetation will absorb more of the signal whilst damp soil can cause stronger reflections.

GPS device mandatory for mineral transport vehicles in Odisha

The Odisha government, India has made it mandatory for all the mineral transporting vehicles to install GPS devices as part of its effort to further streamline the mining activities in the state, a senior official said.

“We have asked all the vehicle owners engaged in transportation of minerals to install GPS devices by December 28. This will help the administration track movement of mineral carrying vehicles from the starting point till the port or plant,” Director of Mines, Deepak Mohanty said a meeting of state-level task-force chaired by Chief Secretary A P Padhi. Once GPS devices are fi tted in the vehicles, he said, one can easily locate the trucks, carrying minerals, and their route.

Russia may launch up to 4 Glonass Navigation Satellites next year

Russia’s Roscosmos space agency may launch up to four Glonass navigation satellites in 2017, Deputy Director General for Automatic Space Complexes Mikhail Khailov said on Monday. According to him, the launches will be carried out if operating satellites are out of order.

China launches pulsar navigation satellite

China has launched a navigation satellite which will conduct in-orbit experiments using pulsar detectors to demonstrate new technologies. The X-ray pulsar navigation satellite, weighing more than 200 kilogrammes, was launched from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in the country’s northwest.

It was carried by a Long March-11 rocket, the 239th flight mission by a Long March carrier rocket series. While in orbit, the satellite will undergo tests on its detector functions and space environment adaptability. The satellite and the rocket were designed by academies affi liated with the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

The X-ray pulsar navigation will help reduce the spacecraft’s reliance on ground-based navigation methods and is expected to lead to autonomous spacecraft navigation in the future.

FAA releases National Airspace System Navigation Strategy

The United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has released its Performance-Based Navigation (PBN) National Airspace System (NAS) Navigation Strategy 2016, the result of a concerted year-long effort by FAA and aviation industry stakeholders. It describes how the FAA intends to transition U.S. NAS operations over the near- (2016–2020), mid- (2021–2025) and far-term (2025– 2030) from predominantly point-to-point navigation, reliant on hundreds of groundbased navigation aids, to PBN-centric operations relying on systems and services supporting Area Navigation (RNAV) and Required Navigation Performance (RNP).

Performance-based navigation specifi es the aircraft area navigation performance in terms of accuracy, integrity, availability, continuity and functionality needed to conduct specifi c operations in a particular airspace.

While promoting the PBN benefits of GNSS such as the GPS and the Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS), the PBN Strategy also recognizes the need to maintain resilient PBN capabilities that remain unaffected in the event of GNSS interference, and that can continue to support PBN operations or provide safe navigation alternatives.

Itelma Selects OT to deliver connectivity for eCall

OT (Oberthur Technologies), a leading global provider of embedded security software products and services announced that Itelma, the biggest Tier 1 automotive equipment supplier in Russia, has selected OT to connect cars to ERAGLONASS, the Russian emergency call system, and to VimpelCom, one the of the leading operators in Russia, for commercial services such as breakdown calls or stolen car recovery, remote control and diagnostics, fleet management, etc.

Pulse Electronics Introduces Off-the-Shelf Antennas

Pulse Electronics introduces three, readyto- use, standard, wireless printed circuit board antennas for laptops, tablets, mobile devices, and devices that operate in a similar environment. The SH0319D/E/W family of antennas provides wireless signal reception ranging from dualbands to multi-bands covering GPS, GLONASS, WLAN/dual-band WIFI, and GSM900/1800. The antennas are designready and can be directly integrated into various electronic devices as an evaluation antenna for use or performance evaluation.

u-blox powers new smart bus solution

u-blox has announced its technology is powering a new smart bus solution from Baoruh Electronic in Taiwan which combines LTE-based telematics and Automated Fare Collection (AFC) for intelligent fleet management. The new POS One smart bus solution uses the NEO-M8U positioning module from u-blox for enhanced positioning accuracy thanks to acceleration and gyroscope sensors incorporated in this module. A TOBY-L280 cellular module transmits vehicle telematics and on-board payment transactions over a high speed LTE connection to back systems. An ELLA-W131 module provides additional Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity for ease of access to vehicle data logs and video recordings.

Garmin® Introduces the GPSMAP® 64sc

Garmin has announced the GPSMAP 64sc, updating the popular line of rugged, button-operated outdoor handhelds with an 8MP camera complete with geotagging and flash functionality. The GPSMAP 64 series brings a dual GPS and GLONASS receiver, preloaded geocaches and smartphone connectivity1 to a product line already popular with hunters, hikers and geocachers of all ages, and the 64sc unit adds another reliable unit to the lineup.

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