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February 25, 2011

ESA Conducts Europe-Wide Galileo Satellite Launch Dress Rehearsal

Europe’s GNSS system is still six months away from first launch of its in-orbit validation (IOV) spacecraft, but one Galileo satellite has already been put through its paces, taking center stage in a Europe-wide exercise conducted recently by the European Space Agency (ESA).

The satellite in question never left the confines of its Thales Alenia Space (TAS) integration facility in Rome, Italy, but was connected to a distant trio of control centers during the nine-day System Compatibility Test Campaign (SCTC-1), which began on January 25.

February 25, 2011

Russia Reschedules GLONASS-K Launch for February 26

Russian Space Forces Commander Lieutenant General Oleg Ostapenko said today (Friday, January 25) that launch of the first GLONASS-K launch satellite has been rescheduled for Saturday, February 26, at 6:07 a.m. Moscow time.

February 24, 2011

Russia Delays GLONASS-K Launch

Launch of the first GLONASS-K satellite, scheduled to take place this morning (6:15 a.m., Moscow time, February 24), has been  postponed for 24 hours, according to the Russian state news agency, RIA Novosti.

A spokesman for the Russian Space Defense Forces attributed the delay to "technical reasons." A news report by the PRIME-TASS news agency, citing a space industry source, said the failure involved a piece of the launch vehicle's control system equipment.

February 16, 2011

FCC Campaign Goes After GPS and Cell Phone Jammers

The  Enforcement Bureau of the U.S. Federal Communications Commission has announced new efforts to clamp down on the marketing, sale, and use of illegal cell phone and GPS jamming devices.

On February 9, the Bureau released two enforcement advisories and a downloadable poster on cell phone and GPS jamming that warn consumers, manufacturers, and retailers (including online and Web-only companies) that the marketing, sale, or use of such jamming devices is illegal.

January 30, 2011

GPS/ GNSS Community Feels New Telecom Interference Threat from LightSquared

In his State of the Union address on January 25, President Obama held up the Global Positioning System as a prime example of government providing “cutting-edge scientists and inventors with the support that they need” to create world-leading, job-creating innovation.

The following day, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) International Bureau approved a conditional waiver allowing LightSquared Subsidiary LLC to build tens of thousands of terrestrial transmitters for wireless communications in frequencies on either side of the GPS L1 band.

January 25, 2011

Three GPS Satellites Moved Into New Positions for More Robust, Accurate Signals

(Update June 15, 2011 Inside GNSS) Completion of Satellite Repositioing Optimizes GPS Constellation

By next June, the United States GPS constellation will attain the most optimal geometry in its nearly 33-year history. Over time, that means a more robust signal, more accuracy and more reliability in GPS-challenged environments.

The 50th Space Wing is in the middle of maneuvering six GPS satellites into more favorable positions. The two-phase operation, called "Expandable-24"  is halfway to completion.

January 25, 2011

EC Names DG-Enterprise Deputy Director to Handle Satellite Navigation Programs

The European Commission (EC) has appointed a new deputy director in the Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry, who will have among his responsibilities overseeing the three units responsible for Galileo and the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS).

January 18, 2011

GLONASS: Bumpy Road

After technical and political setbacks, Russia gets ready to launch its first CDMA-equipped satellite in February.

Russia’s GNSS program started off the year recovering from a series of setbacks that resulted in the dismissal of two space officials in the wake of the December 5 launch failure of three GLONASS-M satellites.

The postponed launch of the next-generation GLONASS-K demonstration spacecraft in 2010 meant that the program ended up the year with four fewer satellites in orbit than expected.

January 18, 2011

Galileo Mid-Term Review Foresees €1.9 Billion in Additional Costs

A European Commission (EC) communication sent to the European Parliament and European Council today (January 18, 2011) estimates that completing a fully operational capability (FOC), 30-satellite Galileo system and the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS) will cost an additional €1.9 billion above the €3.4 billion already allocated.

January 18, 2011

OHB-System "Suspends" CEO over WikiLeaks Galileo Comments

Berry Smutny has become the first GNSS casualty in the WikiLeaks war.

The CEO of OHB-System AG was suspended  on Monday (January 17, 2011) "with immediate effect," according to the company.

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