Technology

GPS III’s long-distance travel is speeding up

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“For decades, people have known that GPS has challenges,” said Dana Goward, chairman of the Resilient Navigation and Timing Foundation. This is a non-profit organization that advocates GPS backup, an alternative system to a certain extent, so that we will not rely so much on it. This group of satellites. “And no system is perfect. I don’t call a baby ugly. I call the baby Precious and need attention. “

Easier to interfere Part of the reason for the existence of the GPS III modernization plan.These satellites have been working since Year 2008, When Lockheed got the contract. Although the first III was originally scheduled to enter space in 2014, it was postponed to 2018. Since then, four more-including the SV-05 launched today-have entered orbit, although the first four will only be online in 2020. It took more than a year to announce the first operation, but since then, the timetable has accelerated. Ladwig expects SV-05 to be approved a few weeks after launch.

This morning’s launch used the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, using a previously-flying and refurbished rocket booster, to put the 24th GPS satellite into orbit. The satellite can launch the so-called M-Code, a signal that enhances safety. This is the magic number required for space forces to provide complete M-code operations on a global scale. Or, really, what Sullivan said: “This is not magic. This is mathematics.” Two dozen satellites in their proper orbits can cover the entire earth.

Provided by Lockheed Martin

The encryption of M-code makes it harder to be deceived: the ground receiver can use the code itself to determine whether the signal is authentic. Sullivan said that although the old version of the military protected signal is also encrypted, the password of the M code represents “next generation security.”

On GPS III satellites, M-Code will also be broadcast more powerfully, making it more difficult to be jammed. “Think of someone yelling or speaking loudly to the crowd and trying to make everyone hear them,” Radwig said.If someone Other Is yelling (maybe a jammer), the speaker (GPS satellite) must speak loudly to be heard.

But M-Code is only fully useful when users on the earth can receive it correctly, and the necessary ground infrastructure manufactured by the defense contractor Raytheon is not complete. Still exists. The company’s next-generation operation control system is A few years late And billions of dollars in excess of the budget. It is now scheduled to go live in 2023.

To address this situation, Lockheed Martin’s mission is to update the Space Force’s current GPS ground control system, which has been in use since 2013 to deal with Early use of M-Code (Basically a beta version). The Space Force approved this required software update for combat operations at the end of 2020. Another upgrade enables the Space Force to control GPS III satellites, which, along with their old M-Code-enabled opponents, adapt to global, early M-Code operations, and the permanent version has been completed.

Civilians will not receive the M-Code signal, which is used for military operations such as targeting weapons, guiding aircraft, and transporting supplies. But they can still use the new satellite L1C broadcast by the GPS III satellite. This is the fourth “Civil signal“, but unique in that it can “interoperate” with broadcasts from other global navigation satellite systems, such as Galileo in Europe, QZSS in Japan, and BeiDou in China. People with the correct receiver can access from any of these constellations. Receive the signal, thereby providing higher accuracy (and a little backup). The signal sent by the L1C is also stronger than the traditional signal.

With GPS III, ordinary users will also get higher accuracy (that is, if they have a receiver that can take advantage of these detailed data, just like watching HDTV requires HDTV). In the past, GPS can let you know where you are within a range of approximately 10 to 33 feet. Actually Yes. With the new cushion, it will be more like 3 to 10 feet.

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