New Year’s GPS Update with Col. Bernie Gruber

January 11, 2011 - By

Don Jewell (DJ), our Defense Editor, caught up with Colonel Bernard Gruber (BG), the newest director of the newly renamed Global Positioning Systems Directorate at SMC in Los Angeles, California. They discussed the current status of the GPS program and the way ahead. Don caught Colonel Gruber just before he departed for the East Coast for an Executive-Level Acquisition Course at the Defense Acquisition University at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. read more

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To Post-Process or Not to Post-Process, that Is the Question

January 5, 2011 - By

If you’ve been around GPS mapping for any length of time, I’m sure you’ve heard of post-processing, and you may have even experienced it yourself. If you used GPS for mapping in the '90s, you almost certainly post-processed your data. In fact, sometimes you had to pay for access to GPS base-station data for post-processing. That’s hard to imagine given the widespread, worldwide availability of GPS base-station data on the web today. read more

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Expert Advice: Why Geodesy Matters, Now More than Ever

January 1, 2011 - By

Geodesy is a suite of powerful Earth-observation techniques, associated methodologies, and analysis tools that today are making a vital contribution to science and society. Yet geodesy is not a new, child-of-technology sciaence. It dates back hundreds of years — some would claim thousands of years, and that the ancient Greeks and other pre-Christian cultures shaped its direction. This is illustrated by its classical definition as the science of measuring and mapping the geometry, orientation in space, and gravity field of the Earth; these days we also include their variations over time. At a practical level, geodetic practice forms the foundation for surveying, navigation, and mapping, and the digital datasets underpinning these activities. read more

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Out in Front: Ten Big Ones in Five

January 1, 2011 - By

At the opposite end of this book, my esteemed colleague Eric Gakstatter gives you his Top Five news stories of the recently passed year, from a system point of view. Spend five minutes here in this column, and I’ll toss up the Top Ten for GNSS business, as reported in this magazine. Not the biggest money deals or revenue generators, at least not in the short term. But the most significant in terms of breaking new ground, pushing out frontiers, integrating with other technologies — the modes through which industry grows and prospers. read more

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Innovation: The Distress Alerting Satellite System

January 1, 2011 - By

Taking the Search out of Search and Rescue
In 1997, a Canadian government study determined that an improved search and rescue system would be one based on medium-Earth orbit satellites, which can provide full global coverage, can determine beacon location, and would need fewer ground stations. This month’s column examines the architecture of the GPS-based Distress Alerting Satellite System and takes a look at early test results. read more

On the Edge: Five Big Ones in Ten

January 1, 2011 - By

Look back with me at the five 2010 GNSS events that most affected surveying, mapping, engineering, construction, and natural resource users. Each one had, or could have had, a significant effect on you and your work. read more

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Qualitative Motion Analysis: INS/GNSS in Care-Giving Applications

January 1, 2011 - By

A pocket tracker for elderly people and Alzheimer’s patients consists of a smartphone using GNSS, WLAN, RFID, and GSM for basic positioning, communication channels, and an accelerometer triad for collapse and motion detection. It seeks to determine not only the quantitative where but the qualitative how: has the user lost balance, fallen, or ceased moving? read more

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Dynamic Duo: Combined GPS/GLONASS Receivers in Urban Environments

January 1, 2011 - By

The impact of adding GLONASS to HS-GPS is assessed using a software receiver operating in an actual urban canyon environment. Results are compared with standard and high sensitivity GNSS receivers and show a significant improvement in the availability of position solutions when GLONASS is added. An assisted high sensitivity receiver architecture is introduced which enables high fidelity signal measurements even in degraded environments. read more

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