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June 30, 2016

Recently Launched GLONASS-M Becomes Operational

The most recently launched GLONASS-M satellite, (GC#753), was set healthy on Monday (June 27, 2016).

The satellite, designed and built by Academician M.F. Reshetnev Information Satellite Systems, was put into orbit on May 29. It replaces an eight-year-old satellite (GC#723) in orbital plane 2, slot 11. GC#723 has been placed in reserve status.

June 22, 2016

Senate Passes Defense Authorization Bill "Fencing Off" Funding for Next-Generation GPS Control System

The Senate approved defense authorization legislation last week before heading out for weekend campaigning. The measure contains a provision the White House said would further delay completion of the already overdue next-generation GPS control system (OCX) by 6 to 12 months.

Senators passed their version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 on June 16, defying the White House, which had said June 7 it would veto the bill.

June 15, 2016

Iridium-based System, Proposed GPS Backup, Incorporates Crypto Protections

A new satellite-based positioning and timing system now available from partners Iridium and Satelles incorporates layered security elements into a service that offers 20- to 50-meter unaided position accuracy worldwide and could serve as a GNSS backup, according to the companies.

The Satelles Location and Timing (STL) service, also offers microsecond timing accuracy, said Satelles CEO Michael O’Connor — and that can be improved with more advanced receivers.

June 15, 2016

China Places 23rd BeiDou Satellite into Orbit

China launched another BeiDou satellite on Sunday (June 12, 2016, local time) to support its GNSS constellation.

The satellite, launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China's Sichuan Province, was taken into orbit by a Long March-3C carrier rocket. It is the 23rd satellite in the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS), a new-generation BeiDou-2 spacecraaft, and the seventh geostationary Earth orbit satellite (GEO) in the BeiDou constellation.

June 15, 2016

Air Force Reaches Out to Small Business with a Big GPS Wish List

GPS program managers are looking for small firms with a fresh take on technologies ranging from handheld M-code receivers and cybersecurity solutions to ground infrastructure and satellite payloads.

June 10, 2016

Here to Stay – Europe Committed to Long Haul in Space with Galileo

As ranking European Union (EU) official, Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, Elzbieta Bienkowska set the tone in a keynote speech that anticipated some major issues to be addressed in the upcoming “EU Space Strategy,” the EUropean Commission’s next big new European space policy document, expected to come out later this year.

June 3, 2016

GSA Setting Up Galileo Reference Center Next Door to ESTEC

Officials signed an agreement this week to build a Galileo Reference Center in Noordwijk, the Netherlands, just across the road from The European Space Agency’s European Space Research and Technology Center (ESA/ESTEC).

The Galileo Reference Center (GRC), to be administered by the European GNSS Agency (GSA), will monitor and assess the quality of the delivery of Galileo services, i.e., the performance of the Galileo Service Operator. The GSA is currently selecting said service operator through an arduous tender process.

May 31, 2016

New GLONASS-M Survives Slight Glitch to Reach Orbit

Russia announced a successful launch of another GLONASS-M satellite on Sunday (May 29, 2016) despite an “irregularity” in the performance of the Fregat upper stage.

According to a report by the TASS state news agency, the Fregat operated longer than planned and used its engines to deliver the spacecraft safely into orbit. The Russian Defense Ministry’s press service reported earlier that a stable telemetry link had been established with the satellite and that onboard systems are functioning normally.

May 31, 2016

Senate Appropriators Slash OCX, MGUE, GPS III Launches

Senate lawmakers made clear their ire with the GPS program, recommending funding cuts for nearly every element and slashing development monies for the troubled new ground control system before taking off for the Memorial Day holiday.

May 31, 2016

House Armed Services Pushes for Galileo Waiver

For the last 16 months the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has been sitting on a request from the Europe Union to waive licensing requirements that are thwarting full use of Galileo signals in the United States.

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