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December 17, 2014

Errant Galileo FOC Satellite Signal Helps Provide First Positioning

Galileo's fifth satellite (and first fully operational capability, or FOC, spacecraft) — recently salvaged from an incorrect orbit  — has been combined with three predecessors to provide its very first position fix.

Test receivers at the European Space Agency (ESA) ESTEC technical center in Noordwijk, the Netherlands, and at the Galileo In-Orbit Test station at Redu, Belgium, received the signals at 12:48 GMT on December 9 from a quartet of Galileo satellites and fixed their horizontal positions to better than two meters.

December 16, 2014

Official: Foreign GNSS Signals Need FCC Authorization for Use in United States

A rule largely aimed at opening trade in telecommunication services will require Russia and other international providers of GNSS services to apply for authorization before their navigation signals can be legally used in the United States, a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) official has told GPS experts on the Space-based Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) Advisory Board.

December 8, 2014

Canada Eases Rules for Commercial Unmanned Flights; UAV Mischief Mounts in U.S.

Canada has lifted a key filing requirement on professional drone operators, allowing firms flying small, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to conduct for-profit flights without prior approval as long as they follow a lengthy set of rules and obtain insurance.

December 3, 2014

Galileo Satellite Recovered, Transmitting Navigation Messages

Europe's fifth Galileo satellite, one of two delivered into a wrong orbit by a Russian Soyuz-Fregat launcher in August, transmitted its first navigation signal in space on Saturday (November 29, 2014) after reaching its new target orbit.

According to the European Space Agency (ESA), a detailed test campaign is under way now the satellite has reached a more suitable orbit for navigation purposes.

October 5, 2015 - October 9, 2015
Bordeaux, France
May 10, 2015 - May 12, 2015
Baška, Krk Island, Croatia
Inside GNSS • November/December 2014

GNSS Hotspots

1. Tariffs
Beijing, China

Thinking Aloud • November/December 2014

Year 10

Every so often, anthropologists — and maybe a few mathematicians — have a field day puzzling over the origins of our positional base-10 numeral system.

Oh, not the historical origins themselves, the Hindu-Arabic innovations beginning in the 5th and 6th centuries. That’s all pretty much agreed.

No, I’m referring to the possible physiological inspirations, the readily visible digits at the ends of our limbs: 10 fingers, 10 toes.

Coincidence? Does nature have coincidents, or does it abhor them like vacuums — o horror vacui?

December 15, 2014 - December 19, 2014
San Francisco, California, U.S.A.
November 17, 2014

Europe Prepares Its Part of GNSS-Enhanced Search & Rescue Service

The European Space Agency (ESA) has announced completion of tests that indicate the readiness of the European component of a modernized, GNSS satellite–aided search and rescue service known as Cospas-Sarsat.

ESA has completed construction and testing of a trio of located on three islands at the far corners of the continent, ready to pick up distress calls via satellite from across Europe and its surrounding waters.

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