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January 13, 2013

GPS Directorate Has Selected Command Successor

The U.S. Air Force appears to have identified a future leader of the GPS Directorate.

At a time yet to be determined, Col. William T. "Bill" Cooley will take up the role of Senior Materiel Leader at the Department of Defense (DoD) acquisition office for developing and producing GPS satellites, ground systems, and military user equipment.

January 12, 2013

Roscosmos Outlines Plans for GLONASS Program through 2020

Russia will build and launch 13 GLONASS-M and 22 GLONASS –K satellites between now and 2020, according to an outline of the nation’s space program published on the Federal Space Agency (Roskosmos) website http://www.roscosmos.ru/main.php?id=24today (January 12, 2013).

January 10, 2013

GPS, Founders Garner More Awards

The Global Positioning System and its founders continue to collect honors for the world’s original GNSS enterprise.

Last month, the Space and Missiles Systems Center (SMC) at Los Angeles Air Force Base accepted the donation of the Dr. Robert H. Goddard Memorial Trophy from Brad Parkinson, the original director of the GPS Joint Program Office (JPO) established in 1973.

January 8, 2013

Septentrio Tracks BeiDou GNSS Signals Using New ICD

Septentrio reported today (January 8, 2013) that the Belgium-headquartered GNSS receiver manufacturer has successfully computed a position/velocity/time (PVT) calculation using BeiDou/Compass satellites in a three-constellation (GPS+GLONASS+BeiDou) solution.

"We are positively surprised of the better than expected performance coming out of what we characterize to be ‘a quite mature constellation,’” Laurent Le Thuaut, Septentrio’s business development manager, told Inside GNSS in an e-mail.

January 8, 2013

China Publishes Official Signal-in-Space ICD for BeiDou Satellite Navigation Open Service

[Updated January 8, 2012] China released today (December 27, 2012 in Beijing; December 26 in the United States) an official version of the complete interface control document (ICD) for the nation’s BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS) Open Service signal-in-space (SIS).

December 18, 2012

Location Privacy Bill Moves to Senate Floor

Setting the stage for action in the next Congress, a Senate committee approved privacy legislation last Thursday (December 13, 2012) that would, with some exceptions, require companies using geolocation data for apps and navigation services to get express permission from users before collecting or sharing that information.

The bill not only applies to the apps now commonly found on smart phone and tablets but also specifically to “geolocation information services” and devices that are in or “part of a vehicle.”

December 18, 2012

Civil Galileo System Poses New Options for Secure Services

When European leaders first took up the idea of creating their own GNSS system nearly 20 years ago, they held up the concept of civilian control as a crucial differentiator from existing services operated by national military establishments.

As Galileo nears its operational phase, that principle may manifest itself in a surprising form: the opportunity to offer a range of security-oriented positioning and timing solutions in place of the all-or-nothing alternatives on encrypted services maintained by defense agencies.

December 18, 2012

GPS Coalition to FCC: LightSquared’s Requests Must Not Come at Expense of Critical Services

A GPS advocacy group has urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), as it considers expansion of terrestrial use of the mobile satellite spectrum (MSS) adjacent to GPS, to recognize that expansion “not come at the expense of critical GPS services.”

December 17, 2012

Meet the New European GNSS Agency: Much the Same, Only Different

Coming nearly full circle and yet ending up in a new place with a new name describes the peculiar fortunes of the European GNSS Agency, an unlikely fate perhaps reflected most clearly in its continued use of its predecessor’s acronym, GSA.

Five years ago when Europe’s GNSS program abandoned its seemingly misconceived and now roundly condemned effort to forge a public-private partnership (PPP) to develop Galileo, the original GSA — the Galileo Supervisory Authority — appeared orphaned, bereft of purpose and patrons.

December 11, 2012

London Conference Beats Drum for Galileo Acceptance

The third Galileo in-orbit validation (IOV) satellite, also known as Flight Model 3 (FM), began transmitting signals last week, and the FM4 spacecraft, like the FM3 launched on October 12, is expected to come on-line soon — providing the theoretical capability of 3D positioning using solely satellites of Europe’s GNSS system.

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