201201 January/February 2012 Archives - Page 2 of 2 - Inside GNSS - Global Navigation Satellite Systems Engineering, Policy, and Design

201201 January/February 2012

New Austerity Squeezes GPS as DoD Tightens Its Belt

Embracing the need for debt-driven discipline, the White House has revised its strategy for the nation’s defense, taking a more fiscally constrained approach that reduces the number of troops and future spending on defense systems.

The new plan, formally announced January 5, was already being put into effect last summer. “The strategic guid­ance was the compass by which we steered the budget review leading to the president’s budget for fiscal year ‘13 and the years thereafter,” Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton B. Carter told reporters.

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By Dee Ann Divis


A photo of the NavSAS group (December 2011)

On December 12, 2011, one of the two Galileo in-orbit validation (IOV) satellites launched on October 21 — the Galileo- ProtoFlight Model (PFM) spacecraft — started transmitting its payload signal on the E1 band over Europe.


That same day NavSAS researchers were able to acquire and track the E1 signal (Galileo Code Number 11) beginning at 14:46:15 CET. Two days later, on December 14, the E5 signal became available as well.

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By Inside GNSS

Winging It

FIGURE 1: Competitive group skydiving is currently judged by overlaying a grid on a photo and evaluating location of divers within its cells. Photo by Mark Harris.

»NovAtel Inc. wingsuit video

In 1589, at the age of 25, Galileo Galilei toiled up the 294 steps of a 55-meter bell tower in Pisa, Italy, where he was tutoring math students at the time.

According to his pupil and later biog­rapher, Vincenzo Viviani, Galileo carried with him two cannonballs, one twice the weight of the other. When he reached the top of the tower, he went to the lower balcony of the tilted structure and dropped the two balls simultaneously.

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By Inside GNSS
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January 12, 2012

USAF Awards Lockheed Additional GPS IIIA Satellite Buy

The U.S. Air Force has awarded Lockheed Martin a $238 million contract for production of the third and fourth satellites in the next-generation GPS constellation, known as GPS III.  The acquisition of the next two GPS IIIA satellites at one time will allow the Lockheed Martin-led team to maximize efficiencies in satellite manufacturing.

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By Inside GNSS