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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.

November 14, 2014

First GPS III Launch Slips to FY17

The launch of the first GPS III satellite could slip to as late as March 2017, further delaying a modernization program that already has been pushed back repeatedly by budget cuts and technical problems.

“The first GPS III launch is tentatively considered for the first half of FY17, based on booster availability and Air Force launch priorities,” a spokesman for the Space and Missile Systems Center told Inside GNSS.

November 14, 2014

Most Tariffs on GPS Equipment Could Soon disappear

Tariffs on GPS devices in more than 70 countries could disappear in a matter of months now that the U.S. and China have worked through an impasse on expanding the Information Technology Agreement (ITA).

November 10, 2014

ESA Will Attempt to Improve Orbits of Errant Galileo Satellites

The European Space Agency (ESA) announced plans today (November 10, 2014) to implement a series of maneuvers to reposition one of two Galileo full operational capability (FOC) satellites left in the wrong orbit this summer, as a prelude to its health being confirmed.
 
The aim is to raise the lowest point of the satellite’s orbit — its perigee — to reduce the radiation exposure from the Van Allen radiation belts surrounding Earth, as well as to put it into a more useful orbit for navigation purposes.
 

October 31, 2014

UK eLoran Now in Operation to Back Up GPS

Technology to counter the threat of GNSS jamming is now available at Dover and along the east coast of the United Kingdom as the island nation continues to implement an enhanced Loran (eLoran) system that is setting an example for the world.

October 30, 2014

Airbus GNSS Engineers Win Top ESNC 2014 Prize

The European Satellite Navigation Competition (ESNC) has gone Big Time.

Unlike past years, when product designers and engineers from small- and medium-sized enterprises (SME) have walked away with the top prize, this year’s overall winner was Airbus Defence & Space (Airbus DS GmbH), a division of the Airbus Group (formerly EADS). Headquartered in France and generating annual revenues of €14 billion, Airbus DS was established last year by the merger of the parent company’s Airbus Military, Astrium, and Cassidian units.

October 30, 2014

Under Congressional Pressure, U.S. Agencies Maneuver on eLoran Relaunch, GPS Backup

Prodded by Congress, the federal government is reexamining its decision to abandon eLoran, a network of ground stations capable of supplying essential timing and positioning data to power, phone, and other critical networks if something happed to GPS.

October 23, 2014

New Home (or Not) for Galileo in European Commission

The European Parliament voted yesterday (October 22, 2014) to accept President-elect Jean-Claude Juncker’s “last-chance” leadership for the European Commission (EC).

But the 11th-hour reshuffling of posts appears to leave Galileo without a clear-cut leader, at least at the political level — even as the Commission and its European Space Agency (ESA) partner have decided to give up the prospect of a December launch of two satellites.

October 23, 2014

India Lofts Third IRNSS Spacecraft into Orbit

ISRO's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, PSLV-C26, successfully launched IRNSS-1C, the third satellite in the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS), from Satish Dhawan Space Center last Thursday (October 16, 2014 local time).

October 17, 2014

Army Funds GPS M-Code Upgrades as NATO Tackles Interoperability Problems

Pushed by Congress to upgrade to M-code, the U.S. Army is earmarking money for the new capability even as sequestration is forcing programs cuts, according to the service’s top acquisition official.

“We are heading towards the M-code capability,” said Heidi Shyu, assistant secretary for acquisition, logistics and technology. The Army has worked “our S&T (science and technology) pieces,” she said, noting that the Air Force was developing the necessary circuit cards through is Military GPS User Equipment (MGUE) program.

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