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Russian GPS standard GLONASS next generation GLONASS-K phase targets nine more years to perfection

by Rusti 2011-07-08 12:05


Russian GLONASS standard GPS satelliteRussian GPS standard, the GLONASS, has been evolving in several phases since introduction decades ago. The "Glonass-M" has been known as the most current phase until this year. However the Glonass-M global positioning satellites due to lack of funds had to skip the thorough testing and often if not almost has been included in the Glonass-M GPS satellite constellation as is baked hot from the oven. No wonder, in some cases there were some irregularities related to the precision and consistency of GPS data provided by the GPS satellite. The new satellites have been included in the GLONASS constellation at the stage of orbiting tests that in some cases prevented certain realms of Russian GLONASS-M space global positioning system to function properly. 


To improve the situation Russian new federal program named "The Global Navigation System 2011-2020", or GLONASS-K phase, has been launched this year. As of today the 23 GLONASS satellites are in service with total of 27 satellites in orbit. One satellite is in the test stage and three satellites are in the technical maintenance state. As we have been discussing in our gps4us News mini-articles earlier, the GLONASS enabled GPS handheld outdoor navigator, such as latest and greatest Garmin's Etrex 10, Etrex 20 or Etrex 30, has to have real time GPS data streams connectivity to at least 4 satellites. I hope to obtain my Etrex 30 as soon as it will be released to the market soon after 8/15/2011 so i could try to test the Etrex 30 GPS navigator with the 23 currently healthy and available GLONASS satellites which, theoretically, should be more than sufficient for the whole system, including and my very own GPS chip inside the gadget ;) to reliably function providing me with perfect coordinates when i will be traveling in Russia.


My GPS learning curve reveals that Russia has began launches of the next generation GLONASS-K satellites. They are capable of providing the updated information necessary to refresh the GPS almanac log record database inside the GPS chip. Once the new satellite has been added to the broadcast GPS almanac log record, the GPS chip will be referring to this particular GPS satellite in future attempts to find it, same way all other International GNSS Service network GPS devices will try to discover this satellite. All GPS devices will be trying to track this GPS satellite on its standard L1 and L2 frequency channels. The problem could arise when the GPS almanac log record database has two different names for the same GPS satellite broadcasting on its standard L1 and L2 frequency channels, or, vise verse one GPS satellite name referring to more than one set of  L1 and L2 frequency channels. That is why the thorough testing of the newly launched satellite is vital to the reliability and consistency of GPS data which all of hundreds and thousands tuned GPS devices will be relying upon.


glonass-k satellite platform

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