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July 1, 2008

ISSSTA 2008 International Symposium on Spread Spectrum Techniques and Applications

The 10th ISSSTA symposium will be held at the Savoia Hotel Regency in Bologna, Italy this August. The theme is "Creating New Dimensions in the Wireless World."

Of particular interest are a session on GNSS, Tuesday, August 26 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and a session on postioning and navigation on Thursday afternoon, August 28.

The main social event will be held at Villa Griffone, the home of radio communications pioneer Guglielmo Marconi, as part of the celebrations for the centennial anniversary of the Marconi Nobel Prize (1909).

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By Inside GNSS
June 19, 2008

AGNSS Standardization

Location technology is entering ever more deeply into our day-to-day lives. Growing market demand for location-based services (LBS) revolves the single premise: “Location everywhere, any time.” The requirement for seamless, ubiquitous positioning includes, of course, urban and indoor environments.

Location technology is entering ever more deeply into our day-to-day lives. Growing market demand for location-based services (LBS) revolves the single premise: “Location everywhere, any time.” The requirement for seamless, ubiquitous positioning includes, of course, urban and indoor environments.

Meeting this requirement will provide the cornerstone for a real “boom” in the location market. To realize the capability, location technology seems to evolve naturally towards the aggregation of several systems used in combination to provide accurate information to users.

Already today one can see the pre-eminent place of assisted GPS or AGPS, which is no more than a way of combining telecommunication signals with GPS signals in order to improve real-time positioning capabilities. Many mobile handsets equipped with AGPS are now available and standardization played a great role in this beginning success story.

With the arrival of Galileo and the near-term prospect for implementation of assisted GNSS (AGNSS) receivers, the market is about to pass through a new technological gap in the location solutions offered by mobile communication systems. . .

. . .Conclusion
The central place that standardization could play in the development of the location market was recognized very early in the Galileo program. This was strongly relayed by the industrial participants that merged their competencies and energy to build a new, very efficient location standard around AGNSS.

This industrial cooperation — tangibly achieved within 3GPP and OMA — brought Galileo and the GNSS concept into the heart of the location market. Even more, the achievement by all the private companies involved in the process gave birth to what we could call the first real and tangible AGNSS concept, gathering and standardizing the use of several constellations together to improve location performance, a concept in which EGNOS is already demonstrating great advantage.

The work continues to add attractive features to the AGNSS standard that ensure even higher performance in mass-market LBS applications. On the one hand, the companies and organizations involved in this process will have to follow the development of communication technologies and, on the other hand, to support the growth of the GNSS concept with the interoperable integration of the future satellites navigation systems. Additionally, an even deeper hybridization of Galileo and GNSS with other technologies will have to be standardized in order to tackle the next challenge: providing accurate locations deep indoors.

In parallel, standardization bodies will also have to tackle the challenge of developing test procedures of new AGNSS (or A-GANSS) location technologies, e.g. minimum performance standards, in order to make the feature really usable.

Nonetheless, the success already achieved in 3GPP and OMA has established an ideal basis and framework for the development of the mass market for location services, starting from the mobile communications domain but also certainly providing an ideal technological basis for other domains such as intelligent transport systems.

To read the rest of Michel Monerrat‘s article, including figures, charts, and graphs, please download the PDF of the entire article above.

By Alan Cameron
June 9, 2008

Integrating Inertial Sensors with GNSS Receivers

GNSS Aided Navigation & Tracking:
Inertially Augmented or Autonomous

By James L. Farrell
Navtech GPS. 2007. Hardcover. 280 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1-56167-979-9

This text offers concise guidance on integrating inertial sensors with global navigation satellite system (GNSS) receivers and other aiding sources. The focus is on low-cost inertial measurement units (IMUs), which require frequent updates.

GNSS Aided Navigation & Tracking:
Inertially Augmented or Autonomous

By James L. Farrell
Navtech GPS. 2007. Hardcover. 280 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1-56167-979-9

This text offers concise guidance on integrating inertial sensors with global navigation satellite system (GNSS) receivers and other aiding sources. The focus is on low-cost inertial measurement units (IMUs), which require frequent updates.

Dr. Farrell has many decades of experience in this subject area and the book is teeming with insights that are hard to find or unavailable elsewhere.

An engineer and university teacher, Farrell has made a number of contributions to inertial navigation technology and integrated navigation systems, including extensive error propagation analyses, synthetic aperture radar motion compensation and transfer alignment algorithms. He is the author of Integrated Aircraft Navigation (1976.) and many articles.

The book is perhaps best suited for engineers with some familiarity with both IMUs and GNSS, although there is an excellent “Review of Fundamentals” chapter that provides a brief summary of prerequisite subject matter.

The introductory chapters also point to the literature for additional background reading.

The main sections detail the steps necessary to yield robust three-dimensional position, velocity, and attitude estimates from low-cost IMU sensors aided by frequent GNSS updates.

The assumption of frequent aiding-source updates, combined with an emphasis on applications that require precise velocity rather than extreme precision in position, results in numerous simplifications in the integration. All aspects of a typical integration are covered, including raw measurement pre-processing, position/velocity/attitude estimation, coordinate systems, and the provision of integrity.

Experimental results are described to illustrate the attainable accuracies (better than 3 cm/s velocities in three-dimensions). The closing chapters of the text include a discussion of other applications of the integration formulation, for example, tracking.

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June 6, 2008

GNSS Hotspots | June 2008

One of 12 magnetograms recorded at Greenwich Observatory during the Great Geomagnetic Storm of 1859
1996 soccer game in the Midwest, (Rick Dikeman image)
Nouméa ground station after the flood
A pencil and a coffee cup show the size of NASA’s teeny tiny PhoneSat
Bonus Hotspot: Naro Tartaruga AUV
Pacific lamprey spawning (photo by Jeremy Monroe, Fresh Waters Illustrated)
“Return of the Bucentaurn to the Molo on Ascension Day”, by (Giovanni Antonio Canal) Canaletto
The U.S. Naval Observatory Alternate Master Clock at 2nd Space Operations Squadron, Schriever AFB in Colorado. This photo was taken in January, 2006 during the addition of a leap second. The USNO master clocks control GPS timing. They are accurate to within one second every 20 million years (Satellites are so picky! Humans, on the other hand, just want to know if we’re too late for lunch) USAF photo by A1C Jason Ridder.
Detail of Compass/ BeiDou2 system diagram
Hotspot 6: Beluga A300 600ST

1. CANADA AND U.S. FIGHT OVER OREGON – AND GPS IS THERE!
Kingston, Ontario, Canada.
√ The Canadian navy built the Murney Tower when Canada and the U.S. fought over Oregon in 1846. Cruises of this Kingston, Ontario region feature the world’s first wireless GPS-triggered audio tours — in six languages, no less. The UNESCO World Heritage Site features old fortifications guarding the Rideau Canal.

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By Alan Cameron
May 17, 2008

Berlin Air Show ILA2008

2008 is the 99th anniversary of the Berlin Air Show, held in the southern section of Berlin-Schönefeld Airport every two years.

It will showcase European and international space activities from Tuesday, May 27 May through Sunday, June 1. German Chancellor Angela Merkel will open the show on Tuesday afternoon.

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By Inside GNSS
April 30, 2008

African Association of the Remote Sensing of the Environment (AARSE) 2008 Conference

The seventh AARSE conference and exhibition is organized around the theme, Application of Earth Observation and Geoinformation for Governance in Africa.

It will take place at the Accra International Conference Centre from October 27 to October 31.

Two special sessions are featured: Coastal Ocean Satellite Remote Sensing and GIS in Africa and Business and Industry Partnerships with the oil and gas industries operating in Africa.

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By Inside GNSS
April 7, 2008

GNSS Hotspots | April 2008

One of 12 magnetograms recorded at Greenwich Observatory during the Great Geomagnetic Storm of 1859
1996 soccer game in the Midwest, (Rick Dikeman image)
Nouméa ground station after the flood
A pencil and a coffee cup show the size of NASA’s teeny tiny PhoneSat
Bonus Hotspot: Naro Tartaruga AUV
Pacific lamprey spawning (photo by Jeremy Monroe, Fresh Waters Illustrated)
“Return of the Bucentaurn to the Molo on Ascension Day”, by (Giovanni Antonio Canal) Canaletto
The U.S. Naval Observatory Alternate Master Clock at 2nd Space Operations Squadron, Schriever AFB in Colorado. This photo was taken in January, 2006 during the addition of a leap second. The USNO master clocks control GPS timing. They are accurate to within one second every 20 million years (Satellites are so picky! Humans, on the other hand, just want to know if we’re too late for lunch) USAF photo by A1C Jason Ridder.
Detail of Compass/ BeiDou2 system diagram
Hotspot 6: Beluga A300 600ST

1. FOLLOW THAT PIZZA!
Huntsville, Alabama
√ Eleven Papa John’s pizza stores in Huntsville, Alabama equip their delivery drivers with handheld PNDs and use a mapping engine developed by startup company TrackMyPizza to give customers 15 second online updates on their pizza pie. You don’t even need to leave your laptop to look out the window.

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By Alan Cameron
April 5, 2008

European Frequency and Time Forum (EFTF2008)

The 22nd European Frequency and Time Forum will be held during the international week of space application, Toulouse Space Show’08. It takes place at Centre de Congres Pierre Baudis in Toulouse, France.
 

The primary objective of the EFTF is to foster scientific and technical exchange among members of the European and world-wide time and frequency community.

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By Inside GNSS
March 9, 2008

GNSS Hotspots | March 2008

One of 12 magnetograms recorded at Greenwich Observatory during the Great Geomagnetic Storm of 1859
1996 soccer game in the Midwest, (Rick Dikeman image)
Nouméa ground station after the flood
A pencil and a coffee cup show the size of NASA’s teeny tiny PhoneSat
Bonus Hotspot: Naro Tartaruga AUV
Pacific lamprey spawning (photo by Jeremy Monroe, Fresh Waters Illustrated)
“Return of the Bucentaurn to the Molo on Ascension Day”, by (Giovanni Antonio Canal) Canaletto
The U.S. Naval Observatory Alternate Master Clock at 2nd Space Operations Squadron, Schriever AFB in Colorado. This photo was taken in January, 2006 during the addition of a leap second. The USNO master clocks control GPS timing. They are accurate to within one second every 20 million years (Satellites are so picky! Humans, on the other hand, just want to know if we’re too late for lunch) USAF photo by A1C Jason Ridder.
Detail of Compass/ BeiDou2 system diagram
Hotspot 6: Beluga A300 600ST

1. $1.2 BILLION FOR GPS
Washington, D.C.
√ President Bush’s FY09 budget allocates nearly $1.2 billion dollars for GPS operations, says the Space and Missile Systems Center’s GPS Wing. If approved, that means the GPS III satellite program goes ahead with a first launch in FY14. That delayed target date looks like a result of last year’s Congressional budget cuts.

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By Alan Cameron