Science and research


Galileo System in Prague

photo:  (sxc.hu)

The European headquarters of the Galileo Navigation System in Prague was put in operation at the beginning of September. The European GNSS Agency thus became the very first institution of the European Union seated on the territory of the Czech Republic. The headquarters was ceremoniously opened with the participation of prominent Czech politicians and scientists on 6 September 2012.

The Galileo navigation system is an independent European global navigation satellite system (GNSS), which should be an independent alternative to the American Navstar GPS and Russian GLONASS systems. The project was named after the Tuscan scientist Galileo Galilei as he was interested, among other fields, in the problems of naval navigation.

The Galileo System will be composed of 30 satellites orbiting at a height of 23 thousand kilometres above the Earth. There are two satellites in space already and the remaining 28 should be in place by 2019. The Galileo system should provide users with their current position with a maximal deviation of one metre.

The European GALILEO civil satellite navigation system should offer 5 types of services in total:
  • Open Service - OS – basic signal, provided free of charge
  • Safety of Life Service - SoL – should improve the basic OS service. Within a few seconds it should warn users that the guaranteed limits of the system (preciseness, etc.) are not being provided for whatever reason. Applications: air traffic control, automatic systems for aircraft landings, etc.
  • Commercial Service - CS – it makes use of two extra signals in comparison with the basic service. These signals are protected by commercial coding, which will be controlled by the service providers and future Galileo operator. Access is controlled by the level of the receiver and by the means of an access code.
  • Public Regulated Service - PRS – two ciphered signals, with controllable access and long-term supports, targeted for users chosen by the state, especially security organs.
  • Search And Rescue Service - SAR – provides emergency localisation within the worldwide navigation rescue service COSPAS/SARSAT with the possibility of communication from both sides.
Czech experts have long been working on other applications that the Galileo system could provide. The Motol University Hospital is testing a bracelet for people suffering from epilepsy. In case of seizure, it should send a warning signal to parents or doctors containing not only the position of the patient, but also the intensity of the epileptic seizure. Thus it should also determine where to get the nearest aid.

The Czech round of the international competition for the best application of satellite navigation systems was won by an application that was co-developed by the Brno University of Defence. The application enables the efficient collecting of straw bales from fields by determining their exact geographic position. A simple idea that will lead to a decrease in the consumption of propellants and the load of agricultural machinery on the environment.

You will find more detailed information about the international competition for applications for navigation systems here.
Author: Andrea Kábelová
Source: www.czechspaceportal.cz
Added: 06.10.2012

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