July 11, 2018

Harris Corp. Awarded $1.5B in IDIQ Contracts to Enhance NGA’s Global Geospatial Databases

Harris Corporation has been awarded three multi-award IDIQ contracts with ceilings totaling $1.5 billion to provide the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) with geospatial data services for up to 10 years.

Harris will create, manage and disseminate high-quality geospatial-intelligence (GEOINT) information for use by the U.S. intelligence community and military worldwide under contracts that cover all three areas of NGA’s JANUS program – geography, imagery and elevation. The JANUS program will contribute to and maintain comprehensive, geospatially accurate databases of the world that can be accessed quickly as intelligence, operational and crisis needs arise.

Harris will use its predictive analytics technology to continuously evaluate the health of NGA databases and to guide the acquisition, creation and integration of all forms of geospatial data. Harris’ cloud-based tools will validate and correct the data – pinpointing locations that require updates.

“Winning JANUS continues our long-standing legacy of providing high-quality, responsive GEOINT and analytics to the intelligence and military communities,” said Bill Gattle, president, Harris Space and Intelligence Systems, in a July 10 press release. “Our analytics technology provides NGA with fit-for-purpose data, reduced production costs and cloud-based access to geospatial products and content.”

Harris is investing in new technologies that improve the speed and accuracy of providing GEOINT products. The company has partnered with the NGA for almost 20 years to provide automated geospatial data processing, data management, and geospatial systems design and development. Harris provides high resolution geospatial data content and products under NGA’s Foundation GEOINT Content Management program, and previously supported the Global Geospatial-Intelligence program.

Worldwide Maritime Tracking Technology
Earlier, Harris announced its first four maritime vessel tracking receivers are now operational – establishing the beginning of the only global, persistent, real-time Automatic Identification System (AIS) ship tracking capability.

Launched Jan. 14 onboard four Iridium NEXT satellites, the maritime tracking hosted payloads are now tracking 250,000 ships and providing data to government and commercial customers. Once the satellite constellation is fully operational next year, it will offer a continuous revisit rate and improved vessel detection and downlinking of AIS information, with an average latency of less than one minute – the fastest, most accurate vessel information available, according to the company.

Harris owns and operates the AIS payloads and is the exclusive provider of exactEarth AIS products and services to the U.S. government. Harris is partnered with exactEarth, which performs the ground-based data processing and continues to service all other global markets.

“Ninety percent of the world’s trade is transported via oceans, making maritime domain awareness critically important,” said Bill Gattle, president, Harris Space and Intelligence Systems. “This is the first global, persistent, real-time system for the industry, enabling customers to accurately track cargo, tanker, passenger and fishing vessels outfitted with existing AIS transceivers.”



By Inside GNSS
July 10, 2018

NovAtel’s GNSS+INS Combined System with SPAN Technology Now Offered in Rugged, Ultra-Compact Unit

NovAtel announced today that it is now delivering their market-leading SPAN® tightly-coupled GNSS+INS navigation technology in a rugged, ultra-compact unit. Commercially exportable and ideal for integration into a wide variety of applications, the high-performance SPAN CPT7 is designed to deliver assured positioning – anywhere, in a package one-quarter the size of the highly successful SPAN-CPT.

Leading-edge SPAN technology leverages generations of precise positioning expertise and the most advanced algorithms to tightly-couple GNSS and INS measurements. This system enables continuous, robust positioning and fast reacquisition in challenging navigation environments where GNSS signals may be unreliable or unavailable for short periods.

The new SPAN CPT7 also incorporates dual antennas to deliver instant alignment, along with interference detection and mitigation using NovAtel’s OEM7 Interference Toolkit (ITK) technology. Integrators can take advantage of a spectrum analysis function of ITK to identify interference within the GNSS frequency bands and whether interference is coming from the external environment or due to other components in an integration project. Mitigation features within ITK allow developers to implement digital filters and eliminate the problem.

Combining the multi-frequency, multi-constellation technology of the OEM7720 receiver board with ITK and the high-performing Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS) IMU, the SPAN CPT7 is said to deliver unrivalled anti-jamming functionality — all in an ultra-compact enclosure that fits in the palm of your hand. When paired with the GPS Anti-Jam Antenna (GAJT) in military applications, SPAN CPT7 is an integral part of Assured Position, Navigation and Timing (A-PNT).

“The remarkable new SPAN CPT7 delivers solutions for defense, mobile mapping, and autonomous vehicle applications with more flexibility than ever before,” stated Neil Gerein, Director, Product Management, NovAtel. “This new product saves customers space and weight without compromising accuracy or performance.”

By Inside GNSS

Curtiss-Wright Highlights A-PNT Solutions for Ground Vehicles in GPS/GNSS-Denied Environments at JNC

Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division announced that it will highlight its family of commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS)-based modules and LRU solutions designed for system integrators seeking to rapidly and cost-effectively deploy Assured Position, Navigation and Timing (A-PNT) services at the 2018 Joint Navigation Conference, July 9-11 (Booth #109), the largest U.S. military Positioning, Navigation and Timing (PNT) conference of the year with joint service and government participation.

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By Inside GNSS
July 9, 2018

Joint Navigation Conference (JNC)

The Military Division of the Institute of Navigation (ION) will host the 2018 Joint Navigation Conference (JNC 2018) for the Department of Defense and Department of Homeland Security this summer in Long Beach, California. The theme of this year’s conference will be: Positioning, Navigation and Timing Technologies: The Foundation for Military Ops and Homeland Security.

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By Inside GNSS
June 29, 2018

Inertial Sense Partners with DataTribe to Expand Autonomous Navigation

Inertial Sense announced last week that it has closed a $2 million round of seed funding led by DataTribe and supported by Atomic Ventures. Inertial Sense, a manufacturer of high-performance precision GPS-Inertial Navigation Systems, will use the funds to accelerate their market-leading position and advanced development of additional micro-navigation solutions and 3-D motion sensors.

Located on Utah’s Silicon Slopes, Inertial Sense designs and manufactures precision GPS sensors that deliver fast, accurate, and reliable attitude, velocity, and position for autonomous vehicle applications. The company’s technology encompasses Inertial Navigation Systems, Attitude Heading Reference Systems, and Inertial Measurement Units.

“We provide engineers with a turn-key solution to help solve the complex problem of autonomous vehicle navigation, at a size, accuracy and price point that the market has never seen before,” Walt Johnson, Founder and CTO, Inertial Sense said in a press release. “Traditional GPS technology is no longer sufficient for today’s autonomous applications. We are bringing the smallest, low cost precision GPS solution to the market, targeting unmanned aerial vehicles, robotics and other applications where there is a need for GPS augmentation.”

Inertial Sense modules are patent pending and are currently being sold worldwide at volume for a broad variety of applications including:

  • Autonomous Navigation: Drones, Robots, Automobiles
  • Aerial Surveys: 3D Mapping, Photogrammetry, Orthomosaics
  • Gimbal Stabilization and Antenna Pointing
  • 3D motion capture and Personnel Tracking

Inertial Sense is the recipient of DataTribe’s inaugural DataTribe Challenge competition, announced in March 2018.

“We instantly recognized Inertial Sense as a remarkably efficient approach to the problems associated with traditional GPS technology,” said Mike Janke, Co-founder and Investment Board Member, DataTribe. “By offering a higher degree of precision in a smaller size with lower power consumption, Inertial Sense is making it possible for GPS to work more effectively in more challenging environments and applications. And by bringing the cost down, they are also paving the way for a mass market navigation system to support consumer applications like wearables and other types of devices. We’re impressed with Inertial Sense’s early achievements and are eager to collaborate with their experienced management team to realize their vision.”

“Inertial Sense fits the mold of over-the-horizon technology breakthroughs that we look for coming out of the military as it ventures into the commercial space,” said Bob Ackerman, Founder and Managing Director of AllegisCyber, a leading Silicon Valley VC firm. “They are at the forefront of micro-sensors and software for autonomous vehicles, robotics, transportation and drones. The explosive growth of IoT, requires micro-sensor-based instrumentation to measure, monitor and ensure accuracy. These guys are leading by a large margin.”

DataTribe is a cybersecurity and data science startup studio that invests and co-builds next generational commercial software. The firm draws upon experienced technology and entrepreneurial teams from the world’s most prestigious, high-stakes environments, including the international intelligence community and National Labs from U.S, Canada, UK and Australia. Headquartered in Fulton, MD with offices in San Francisco, CA.

By Inside GNSS
June 25, 2018

GSA’s Cospas-Sarsat Meeting Addresses Progress of Search and Rescue Systems

The Cospas-Sarsat MEOSAR (Medium-Altitude Earth Orbit Search and Rescue) system has been in the news quite a bit of late, and with good reason. As the technology has evolved, so too has the ability to improve search and rescue operations which save lives.

The cover story for the current issue of Inside GNSS is dedicated to the Cospas-Sarsat MEOSAR system and its role as a solution to support the ICAO GADSS Autonomous Distress Tracking recommendation.

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By Inside GNSS
June 19, 2018

Naval Research Laboratory Marks 60 Years in Space with Vanguard

Just more than 60 years ago the U.S Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) launched what has become the longest remaining man-made object in space.

Launched in March 1958, Vanguard I, a component of the Vanguard Project, is a small aluminum sphere (16.5 centimeters in diameter) that was designed to partake in the International Geophysical Year (IGY) — a series of coordinated observations of various geophysical phenomena during solar maximum, spanning July 1957 through December 1958.

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By Inside GNSS
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