GNSS Opinions

Expert Advice: Test-Based Civil Receiver Certification

December 1, 2011By

Disaster-preparedness plans recognize the individual’s role in his or her own survival. When storms approach, have water, food, and basic survival gear on hand. It takes time for help to arrive. The civil GPS industry faces an oncoming storm of interference, and the receiver is the first line of defense. As we integrate GPS into all facets of our lives and infrastructure, we become more subject to disruptions, both unintentional and intentional. Newark International Airport now sees several jamming events per day. In Taiwan, one airport experiences an average of 117 events per day! read more

Letters to the Editor: The Cost of Reliability

December 1, 2011By

Letters to the Editor: The Cost of Reliability read more

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Expert Advice: MSS Misinformation, and Ten Truths

December 1, 2011By

LightSquared is currently conducting a public campaign intended to persuade federal regulators to approve a nationwide broadband service that would be detrimental to users and applications that depend on GPS. The campaign relies on misinformation, revisionist history, half-truths, and clear misstatements of fact. To understand the effort to convince regulators and legislators that the experts are wrong, one must consider 10 basic truths. read more

The Hits and the Misses

November 29, 2011By

LONDON — Technical conferences usually feature hits: advances in technology, new form factors, improved signal processing. But the opening day of the European Navigation Conference in London has dwelt instead on misses: vulnerabilities, threats, weaknesses that leave GNSS increasingly open to attack and disruption. Gaps in our armor, with scant help in sight. read more

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Expert Advice: Realizing Europe’s SatNav Ambitions

November 1, 2011By

The 21st century today faces and will continue to encounter many new societal challenges, all mutually interdependent: health, environment, agriculture, ageing population, personal security, public and civil protection, safe and efficient transport and mobility, citizen rescue, land management, energy (supply, security, and efficiency), full employment, new consumer services, high-tech industry, business security, connectivity, globalization, intellectual property management and protection. All these challenges have a common denominator: the economic health of Europe: growth, competitiveness, and job creation. read more

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Faster than a Speeding Light Particle

October 21, 2011By
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We published a news story recently suggesting that Albert Einstein, the Mighty Hip Einie, got one thing wrong, or at least not quite totally right: the universal upper limit constituted by the speed of light. Precise-timing GPS receivers in a Geneva lab helped indicate that subatomic neutrinos can travel at a velocity just a smidge faster than the speed of light. Someone at a burning idea factory in the Netherlands riposted that the scientists erred in their conclusion because they failed to take into account the relative movement of the GPS clocks in space and thus miscalculated the neutrinos' time of flight. We hereby refute that assertion with our heavy-lifting Innovation columnist, Richard B. Langley. read more

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Compass ICD in October; Harmonizing GNSS

September 29, 2011By

China's GNSS, Compass or Beidou, intends to publish its signal interface control document (ICD) in October. Representatives of the system made an unprecedented showing at ION GNSS in Portland, and referred frankly to "internal deliberations" that may be at the root of much of the public uncertainty about the system's planned structure and timeline. Meanwhile, representatives of other navigation satellite systems also delivered updates on their status and plans. Everyone is concerned about LightSquared interference, but everyone continues to move forward. This month's column is a two-parter: a guest appearance by Len Jacobson, editorial advisory board member for GPS World magazine and president of Global Systems and Marketing Inc. Len writes on the "Harmonizing GNSS" aspect, the briefings by all systems and their efforts to achieve compatibility and interoperability. Then I'll return with an account of the Compass panel that formed part of the CGSIC meeting immediately preceeding ION. read more

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Expert Advice: EPIC Happening — Europe’s PNT Industry Council

September 1, 2011By

We have the United States GPS Industry Council, the Japan GPS Council, and the Korean GNSS Technology Council. Anything missing? The challenges facing the performance, navigation, and timing (PNT) community, which relies on GNSS amongst other things, are getting more numerous and complex, and Europe is the only major territory without a unified industry nexus where such challenges can be engaged. However, this is about to change. read more

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