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February 19, 2013

FAA Issues a Call for Unmanned Aerial Systems Research and Test Sites

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has begun the delayed process of selecting six research and test sites where unmanned aerial systems or UAS will finally be able to spread their wings and, hopefully, launch a new, multi-billion dollar industry.

February 19, 2013

Air Force Awards Boeing Contract to Continue GPS Modernization

The U.S. Air Force has awarded The Boeing Company a $51 million to continue modernizing the GPS satellite constellation for up to five more years. The contract covers GPS IIF satellite shipment to the launch site in Florida, pre-launch preparation, post-launch checkout, handover, and on-orbit support. It has an initial one-year term with four one-year options.

February 18, 2013

Lockheed Gains New GPS III SV Contract, Reaches Milestone

The U.S. Air Force GPS Directorate at Los Angeles Air Force Base, Califorinia, has awarded Lockheed Martin Space System Company a $62-million firm-fixed-price contract for GPS III Space Vehicles (SVs) 5 and 6 to be completed by June 30, 2017.

Funded under the federal Fiscal Year 2013 budget and announced February 8, construction will take place at the company’s facilities in Newtown, Pennsylvnia.

February 8, 2013

Galileo Escapes Further Cuts in European Council Budget Action

The European Council heads of states meeting ended today (February 8, 2013) without making further cuts in the proposed budget for Europe's GNSS programs.

February 7, 2013

GPS Industry Launches New Association

[Updated February 13, 2013] The GPS industry has formed a new trade association called the GPS Innovation Alliance that will work to educate policy makers and the public about the GPS system and protect the interests of the hundreds of organizations and users that rely upon the constellation, according to sources familiar with the new group.

February 4, 2013

FTC Report Recommends Greater Location Privacy Effort for Mobile Devices

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued a staff report last Friday (February 1, 2013) that suggests companies consider offering a Do Not Track (DNT) mechanism for smartphone users among other measures to protect location privacy.

Use and possible abuse of real-time geolocation data was well up on the list of concerns addressed by the report, “Mobile Privacy Disclosures: Building Trust Through Transparency.”

January 31, 2013

UK/US Deal on GPS Signal Patent Omits Galileo Version

A recently announced deal between the United States and the United Kingdom to revoke the UK’s surprise patents on a key GPS technology has a glaring omission: Intentionally left out of the agreement are patents on the European Union’s version of the technology, a signal structure important to enabling Europe’s Galileo system to work seamlessly with America’s GPS constellation.

January 31, 2013

European Space Policy: Jobs the Bottom Line for Budget Battle, Galileo

Although they use a different vocabulary than their U.S. counterparts, European political leaders say that jobs would be the victims at the bottom of their fiscal cliff.

In his keynote speech to the 5th Space Conference on European Space Policy (subtitled “A Global Tool for Global Challenge” held this week in Brussels, European Commission (EC) Vice-President Antonio Tajani underlined the important role of space for restoring economic growth and employment.

January 18, 2013

GPS & the Fiscal Cliff — Part II

GPS contractors are scrambling to assess new Pentagon budget-cutting directives that have the potential to slow GPS modernization.

The belt-tightening is in response to a three-way fiscal vise created by the failure of Congress and the White House to agree on a budget for this year, on a new limit for the nation’s debt, and on a plan to implement future budget cuts.

January 17, 2013

UK Drops Patent Efforts on GPS, GNSS Signal Design

The United States and United Kingdom announced today (January 17, 2013) that the British government would end its efforts to obtain patent or intellectual property (IP) rights related to GPS.

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