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Old 01-07-2012, 12:45   #1
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Will this make GPS obsolete?

Great article here on a new technology that takes existing radio waves from all sorts of sources to geolocate you, including inside a building.

What makes it interesting is that there is no new infrastructure that is needed, and it can't be turned off by satellite operators.

I wonder how well it will work in the middle of the Atlantic?
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Old 01-07-2012, 12:54   #2
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

Avb,

This was done for years under the name LORAN. It doesn't work mid ocean because radio waves are line of site. Most modern GPS units do take advantage of the technology (under the name WAAS) which used land based transmitters to up the accuracy of the GPS signal.

The thing that is really getting some traction is units with multi-band GPS recievers that use the US GPS, Russian GLONASS, the Chinease, and European comparables. by combining all these systems into one über system, the accuracy should go up.

Thoug I think the likelihood of the US turning GPS off again is highly unlikely. It is too much a part of our infastructure now, and would likely cause us more problems than anyone we are fighting. Remember all our supply mechanisms (ships, airplanes, trains, and 18 wheelers) are dependent on GPS. Turning it off for them would cause havoc to us. It certainly is possible, but a very very unlikely situation.
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Old 01-07-2012, 13:48   #3
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stumble View Post
It doesn't work mid ocean because radio waves are line of site.
SOME radio waves are line of site (i.e. VHF).
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Old 01-07-2012, 14:33   #4
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stumble View Post
Avb,

This was done for years under the name LORAN. It doesn't work mid ocean because radio waves are line of site. Most modern GPS units do take advantage of the technology (under the name WAAS) which used land based transmitters to up the accuracy of the GPS signal.
LORAN requires dedicated transmitters, this technology builds on what is already out there. As previously indicated, no new infrastructure.

Only some radio waves are line of sight; think shortwave radio. Although I do still wonder if this would work in the middle of nowhere.
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Old 01-07-2012, 14:43   #5
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

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Originally Posted by avb3 View Post
LORAN requires dedicated transmitters, this technology builds on what is already out there. As previously indicated, no new infrastructure.

Only some radio waves are line of sight; think shortwave radio. Although I do still wonder if this would work in the middle of nowhere.
LORAN was discontinued several months ago. There was no money in the budget for it. some people fought to keep it as a backup to gps but the government was not interested in it
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Old 01-07-2012, 14:57   #6
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

When new technology hits the market, the receiver units are expensive. GPS units are both relatively inexpensive & ubiquitous these days. Therefore if there ever seemed to be a developing demand for the new technology, GPS companies would simply add on the technogy as a feature on first their high end units, then in time all their units.
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Old 01-07-2012, 15:06   #7
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

The short answer is no, it's not going to work very well mid Atlantic. Only medium wavelength signals from shore transmitters are going to be useful, and longer wavelength means less precision in any calculations on position. And you can't use bounced long wave signals from the atmosphere because then you don't know how far they have traveled. Plus the number of sources are much fewer so errors will be larger.
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Old 01-07-2012, 15:32   #8
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

Does no one else wonder just how this "new technology" works? The article glibly says that it exists, but gives not even a hint of how it uses all these unidentified signals to work out a position.

Until such info is brought out I will remain skeptical.

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Old 01-07-2012, 16:26   #9
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

Does anyone (including the original poster) find virtue in reading the article before asking questions and/or commenting on it? This is taken straight from the article:
It can also work in areas where GPS satellites are unable to perform. That means deep inside buildings and -- by picking up signals from Low-Earth-Orbit satellites -- in the most remote parts of the world, such as the Arctic. BAE Systems suggests Navsop could be used by drones and other autonomous aircraft, if their guidance systems are disrupted.
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Old 01-07-2012, 16:47   #10
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

I'm waiting on the iPhone app that photographs the stars and applies some algorithm to geolocate you
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Old 01-07-2012, 16:50   #11
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

Quote:
SOME radio waves are line of site (i.e. VHF).
Radio waves that can not compute distance bounce and are NOT line of sight. Cell phones can do some line of sight computations however they don't transmit all that far.
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Old 01-07-2012, 17:10   #12
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

The US military doesn't use the same microwave radio signals (except for navigation) as does the rest of the users.

US GPS satellites transmit two different frequenctes.

http://www.kowoma.de/en/gps/signals.htm


A normal GPS fix is to 1000th of a mile. Is this not close enough?
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Old 01-07-2012, 18:25   #13
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Astral Blue View Post
Does anyone (including the original poster) find virtue in reading the article before asking questions and/or commenting on it? This is taken straight from the article:
It can also work in areas where GPS satellites are unable to perform. That means deep inside buildings and -- by picking up signals from Low-Earth-Orbit satellites -- in the most remote parts of the world, such as the Arctic. BAE Systems suggests Navsop could be used by drones and other autonomous aircraft, if their guidance systems are disrupted.
As OP, yes I did read it but had forgot about the low orbit comments. I was more intrigued by geolocations inside buildings.

So does that mean they are using Iridium satellites?
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Old 01-07-2012, 18:26   #14
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

Quote:
Originally Posted by John A View Post
.....

A normal GPS fix is to 1000th of a mile. Is this not close enough?
Heck, that is damn near dead reckoning accuracy!!!
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Old 01-07-2012, 18:27   #15
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Re: Will this make GPS obsolete?

Sounds like it will soon be time to upgrade my tinfoil hat.........

......I blame da Gubberment.
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