The European Union will explore alternative PNT through a pre-feasibility study and technological demonstration of seven different non-GNSS positioning, navigation, or timing solutions from six different companies, including Locata Corporation (Australia), Satelles Inc. (US) and GMV Aerospace (Spain). Some of the demonstrations will consist of precise timing, some of precise positioning, and some of both. The other companies receiving grants to particcipate are OPNT BV (the Netherlands), Seven Solutions SL (Spain) and SPCTime (France).
The October 11 announcement caps a year of submissions and review since the tender for the project was published in October of last year by the European Commission’s Directorate Generaal for Defence, Industry and Space. The goal of the process is “to analyse the technologies, which could deliver positioning, and/or timing information, independently from GNSS, to be effective backup in the event of GNSS disruption, and if possible to be able to provide PNT in the environments where GNSS cannot be delivered.”
Each company received a slightly different amount, all of the equal to or a little less than 70,000 Euros ($81,180). Locata received two awards because it submitted separate proposals for positioning and timing. The estimated total budget for the undertaking is 500,000 Euros ($580,000).
The evaluation will last for several months and culminate with a public event at the EC Joint Research Centre (photo above courtesy EC) in Ispra, Italy, northwest of Milan, in either April or May 2021. A report detailing the EU’s conclusions from the demonstration is expected to be published about one month after the public event.