Chinese “BeiDou” GPS goes to market

Joël Barre, Director of the Guianese Space Centre and Deputy Chief Operating Officer of the Centre National Français d’Etudes Spatiales, 3rd from the left, and Johannes Hahn, Member of the EC in charge of Regional Policy 4th from the left, showing the model of the Ariane rocket.

Joël Barre, Director of the Guianese Space Centre and Deputy Chief Operating Officer of the Centre National Français d’Etudes Spatiales, 3rd from the left, and Johannes Hahn, Member of the EC in charge of Regional Policy 4th from the left, showing the model of the Ariane rocket.

Towards the end of last year Beijing announced the opening of its Geostatic Positioning System for civic and commercial users in the region of Asia and Pacific, adding that the China Satellite Navigation Office is working fast to extend the area covered by this satellite umbrella named “BeiDou”. A GPS system “provides location and time information anywhere on or near the Earth… The system provides critical capabilities to military, civil and commercial users around the world.“ 

The currently used all over the world American GPS system, NavStar, covers the entire globe offering a huge array of civic services and of course, valuable military applications for the US. In 1996 the precision of the American system offered to civic and commercial users was greatly increased and its services were made free of charge. As a result applications multiplied exponentially, but the world would go today totally blind, if the Americans decide to shut down their NavStar for the rest of us.

The same is true for the Russian GLONASS system, which offers similar possibilities of global coverage and precision. But in this case also Russia can do the same as the Americans, holding the world as hostage.
This fact and the huge military abilities related to GPSs have urged the other global players like Europe, China, and Britain to develop their own systems.

Of those endeavours however, only the Chinese “Beidou” system is able now in practice to offer services to civic and commercial users in the area of Asia-Pacific. The European Union and Britain are well ahead with their own projects. The EU is developing its Galileo system and the Britain the NAVSOP but none is available today.

European GPSs

On 12 October 2012 Europe’s satellite navigation system made a giant step forward. According to an EU Commission announcement, “Two operational satellites were launched on 12 October from Kourou, French Guiana, using a Soyuz launcher. These two new satellites, named David and Sif1, have joined another pair of satellites that has been orbiting the Earth since October 2011. Together they form a mini-constellation of four satellites needed for Galileo’s validation and fine-tuning. Following a detailed in-orbit check, by the end of 2014 a further 14 satellites will be deployed. This will enable EU to provide the very first services based on this cutting-edge EU infrastructure”.

On the British side progress seems equally encouraging. The country’s leading defence company BAE Systems unveiled its research on an “advanced positioning system that exploits existing transmissions such as Wi-Fi, TV, radio and mobile phone signals, to calculate the user’s location to within a few metres”. Given that the US and Russia have concluded the development of their GPSs many years ago during the “cold war”, today’s projects are spearheaded by the Chinese “BeiDou” system, which is the first to offer civic users a reliable service, needing however expensive login gadgets. The China Satellite Navigation Office though said they expect the market to come up with cheap solution for receiver equipment.

 

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

New EU rules ensure better protection for 120 million holidaymakers this summer

European Border and Coast Guard: 10 000-strong standing corps by 2027

Google succumbs unconditionally to EU’s “right to be forgotten” ruling

COVID-19 will hit the developing world’s cities hardest. Here’s why

Tributes for ‘role model’ former UN refugee agency chief, Sadako Ogata

The big five EU telecom operators in dire straights

AI can wreak havoc if left unchecked by humans

Clamp down on illegal trade in pets, urge Public Health Committee MEPs

As conflicts become more complex, ‘mediation is no longer an option; it is a necessity’, UN chief tells Security Council

We are ‘burning up our future’, UN’s Bachelet tells Human Rights Council

Hydrogen isn’t the fuel of the future. It’s already here

5 ways COVID-19 has changed workforce management

Terrorism and migrants: the two awful nightmares for Europe and Germany in 2016

EU job-search aid worth €2 million for 500 former shipbuilding workers in Spain

France pushes UK to stay and Germany to pay

Where EU air pollution is deadliest

China rare earth prices soar on their potential role in trade war

Harmonised Unemployment Rates (HURs), OECD – Updated: February 2020

UN spotlights wellbeing of seafarers on International Day

‘Much more’ can be done to raise awareness about the plight of persons with albinism: UN chief

UN-backed intercultural dialogue forum urged to keep working to ‘bridge gap between the like-minded’

EU joint response to disasters: deal reached with Council

Combatting terrorism: Parliament sets out proposals for a new EU strategy

This South Korean city once had the biggest coronavirus outbreak outside of China. Now it’s reported zero new cases

Commission moves to ensure supply of personal protective equipment in the European Union

5 crises that could worsen under COVID-19

Finland has just published everyone’s taxes on ‘National Jealousy Day’

ITU Telecom World 2017: exploring smart digital transformation

European Parliament calls on Russia to end occupation of Georgian territories

5 neuroscience hacks that will make you happier

RescEU: MEPs vote to upgrade EU civil protection capacity

All for equality – 2020 is a pivotal year for Gender Equality

Deeper reforms in Korea will ensure more inclusive and sustainable growth

UN Climate Action Summit concludes with insufficient EU and global pledges

Milk, fruits and vegetables distributed to schoolchildren thanks to EU programme

China’s cities are rapidly becoming more competitive. Here’s why

Security Council must ‘come together’ to address the plight of children trapped in armed conflict, says UN envoy

EU Migrant Crisis: Italian Coast Guard Headquarters and Italian Navy to give host national opening addresses at Border Security 2016 in Rome

New EU-UK agreement is welcome but thorough scrutiny remains, insist lead MEPs

Coal addiction ‘must be overcome’ to ease climate change, UN chief says in Bangkok

EU27 leaders unite on Brexit Guidelines ahead of “tough negotiations” with Theresa May

How to get young people in Europe to swipe right on voting

This is Amsterdam’s ambitious plan to turn its transport electric

Reforms in Latvia must result in stronger enforcement to tackle foreign bribery and subsequent money laundering risks

Parliament boosts consumer rights online and offline

What is systemic racism, and how can we combat it?

EU Council approves visa-free travel for Ukraine and cement ties with Kiev

Powering a climate-neutral economy: Commission sets out plans for the energy system of the future and clean hydrogen

Marginalized groups hit hardest by inequality and stigma in cities

OECD joins with Japan to fight financial crime by establishing new academy

The business case for diversity in the workplace is now overwhelming

EU Parliament and Council: Close to agreement on the bank resolution mechanism

Poor quality is healthcare’s silent killer. Here’s what we can do about it

ECB asks for more subsidies to banks

Global trade is broken. Here are five ways to rebuild it

Intervene, don’t overthink – the new mantra of systems design

We need natural solutions to fight ocean and climate risk

EU Parliament: No EU-US trade agreement without safe data

The MWC14 Sting Special Edition

Italy and Greece zeroed their fiscal deficits, expect Germany’s response

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s