|News Update|| |
UK Government to explore new ways of delivering ‘sat nav’
New options for a UK satellite navigation and timing capability programme to support the nation’s critical infrastructure will be explored by the government, it was announced today (Thursday 24 September).
The Space-Based Positioning Navigation and Timing Programme (SBPP) will explore new and alternative ways that could be used to deliver vital satellite navigation services to the United Kingdom which are critical for the functioning of transport systems, energy networks, mobile communications and national security and defence, whilst boosting the British space industry and developing the UK’s own capabilities in these services.
This will follow the work of the UK’s Global Navigation Satellite System (UK GNSS) programme, which is due to conclude at the end of the month.
UK GNSS is an exploration programme which has developed outline plans for a conventional satellite system as an alternative to American GPS or the EU’s Galileo. The programme will now be reset as the SBPP to build on this work to consider newer, more innovative ideas of delivering global ‘sat nav’ and secure satellite services to meet public, government and industry needs.
Satellite navigation is a sophisticated technology that works by beaming signals from space that devices such as smartphones can use to determine their location and time – otherwise known as position, navigation and timing (PNT).
This could include technology that supports people’s everyday lives, such as emergency services to locate incidents, financial services companies to regulate exchanges on the UK stock market, or energy networks to ensure households receive power. Satellite navigation systems are also necessary to unlocking future technologies such as driverless cars, smart cities and artificial intelligence – transforming the way people live, work and travel.
Capitalising on the ingenuity of British businesses and academics, the programme will explore the use of different kinds of satellites at various levels of orbit by exploiting technologies offered by companies at the cutting-edge of innovation such as OneWeb, Inmarsat and Airbus.