GPS News, News Archives


May 2009 | Comments Off on NEWSBRIEFS – GPS


China launches navigation satellite

China launched Beidou-2 (or Compass- G2) – their second geostationary navigation satellite recently. The Compass constellation comprises 31 satellites – 27 MEO satellites and 4 geostationaries. BeiDou-2 is reported to have a lifespan of 8 years. The first phase of the project will provide coverage for Chinese territory – ultimately giving global cover.

China’s SatNav worldwide ‘by 2020’

China will provide free global navigation and positioning services with its Compass system by 2020. Chief Engineer of the China Electronics Technology Group Corp said that Compass would cover all of China and its adjacent regions by the end of 2010 or early 2011 – and expand into a global network by 2020 providing a civil accuracy within 10 m without charge.

GPS transmits on new frequency

The latest-launched GPS satellite – GPS IIR-20(M) – has started to transmit on L5, the proposed third civil signal – 1.17645 GHz – which will eventually support safety-of-life applications for aviation and provide improved availability and accuracy. This broadcast confirms the ITU filing of the frequency in the co-allocated Radio Navigation Satellite Service (RNSS) and Aeronautical Radio Navigation Service (ARNS) band. Without this actual transmission, the reservation of the frequency could be lost.

Septentrio offers Dual-Constellation live L5 tracking

Septentrio Satellite Navigation GNSS receivers are now successfully tracking the new L5 signal from GPS satellite SVN49. Researchers and specialists interested in evaluating and monitoring GPS and Galileo signals on two common frequencies can now perform tests with live signals from both constellations on L1 and L5/E5a.

Iridium used to track vehicles in the Middle East

Iridium reseller Fleet Management Systems (FMS) has deployed its GPS and all-satellite fleet tracking and monitoring system for KGL Transportation Company in Kuwait. The solution includes tracking and monitoring devices, one on the tractor and another on the trailer and in addition to position coordinates, direction, and speed, it transmits details about the load and driver, route, time of departure, time of arrival etc.

EGNOS handed to the EC

The European Commission (EC) became the owner of the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS) infrastructure – and entrusted the company ESSP SaS with its operation. EGNOS

was developed by the European Space Agency (ESA) under the aegis of a trilateral agreement between the EC, ESA and Eurocontrol. ESSP SaS will be under contract to the Commission to

manage the operations and maintenance of EGNOS. ESA will maintain the role of design and procurement agent. EGNOS is based entirely on GPS, using the same format as the US Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) – receivers can use both systems interchangeably.

Iridium-based Vessel Monitoring Systems approved for commercial fisheries

The Faria WatchDog VMS is a dual-mode transceiver product that uses the Iridium satellite network for position reporting and GSM data links when working in range of shore towers. It received type approval from the Pacific Island Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) for its 16 member countries and is also type approved by the NOAA for all U.S. fishery

GOCE’s electric ion propulsion engine switched on

GOCE’s electric ion propulsion system has been switched on and confirmed to be operating normally, marking another crucial milestone in the satellite’s postlaunch commissioning phase. The Flight Control Team is now working from the GOCE Dedicated Control Room at ESOC, and has continued with a series of operational checks since the end of the critical Launch and Early Orbit Phase on 20 March.

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