Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

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Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby Biggles » Thu 10 May, 2018 1:21 pm

Most instructional...

SURPRISE SPENDING AND SPLURGES
You’ll never be lost again

If you have no sense of direction there is good news on the horizon because the government will spend $160.9 million over four years to improve the “accuracy, integrity and availability of satellite navigation”. They reckon the new funding will increase GPS to an accuracy of 10 centimetres across all of Australia and its maritime zones, including to areas without mobile phone coverage.

I suppose 10cm accuracy (or the more technically specific term "dilution of signal") is better than my current 3m GPS+GLONASS... :?

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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby slparker » Thu 10 May, 2018 2:57 pm

Pretty handy if you want to lob precision munitions around the place. I presume that is the intended purpose of the upgrade.

But, with that level of precision I could locate my car keys in the morning....
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby Mark F » Thu 10 May, 2018 3:13 pm

I doubt whether this will have any effect on the normal hand held or car type gps units as these rely on US/EU/Russian satellites. It sounds more as though there will be enhancements in the differential gps systems used by surveyors etc.
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby north-north-west » Thu 10 May, 2018 3:35 pm

Along with the $10 per day, you can use my share of this to deal with more important issues.
You know, minor stuff like homelessness, health (spending cut), education (spending cut), ABC (spending cut), a federal ICAC, disability, refugees, that sort of thing.
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby taswegian » Thu 10 May, 2018 3:36 pm

Surveyors already have cm accuracy so suspect this is aimed at consumer GPS.
Spatial data has been under pressure to produce 'more accurate' data for a while now.

Be interesting when GDA 2020 hits the deck.
http://www.ga.gov.au/scientific-topics/positioning-navigation/geodesy/datums-projections/gda2020

I don't think the budget announcement is unexpected, more a politically timed event to aid their well being. :roll:
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby GPSGuided » Thu 10 May, 2018 3:50 pm

How are they going to do that when resolution is dictated by countries that host satellite positioning systems? Are we donating this money to the US? I understand the US is scheduled to upgrade their GPS network to match the other three global systems which come with sub-meter resolution in the base spec. Not sure what infrastructure our federal govt can invest to alter.


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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby Walk_fat boy_walk » Thu 10 May, 2018 4:41 pm

slparker wrote:Pretty handy if you want to lob precision munitions around the place. I presume that is the intended purpose of the upgrade.

Nup. This is an implementation of SBAS (Satellite Based Augmentation System), which is a satellite broadcast of correction data to correct local error variations inherent in the system. Its applications are myriad but the main one is to aid precision aeronautical nav and approach. It has been used in the US (known as WAAS - Wide Area Augmentation System) for some time.
Mark F wrote:I doubt whether this will have any effect on the normal hand held or car type gps units as these rely on US/EU/Russian satellites. It sounds more as though there will be enhancements in the differential gps systems used by surveyors etc.

Nup. Surveyors currently use variants of GBAS (ground based augmentation) where the correction data is transmitted locally on narrowband radio (eg. over VHF or UHF) channels. They can continue to do this, or adopt the new satellite system, but the intention is for broader consumer and transport/industrial use. Modern GPS units have a 'WAAS' enable function (my GPSMAP62s does) which I guess will essentially now actually "do something" now that there is (will be) an augmentation satellite in the sky.
GPSGuided wrote:How are they going to do that when resolution is dictated by countries that host satellite positioning systems? Are we donating this money to the US? I understand the US is scheduled to upgrade their GPS network to match the other three global systems which come with sub-meter resolution in the base spec. Not sure what infrastructure our federal govt can invest to alter.

Nup. As above this is an augmentation system where the correction transmission comes from a separate (geosynchronous I think) satellite from the GPS/GLONASS constellations. The old story about the host country controlling positioning resolution pertained to the actual "in band" data formats transmitted in the GPS signals (eg. P code vs C/A code); augmentation is an adjunct and can be (will be) essentially a 3rd party system. Not sure about the US upgrade mentioned... would be interesting to find out more, but as I say augmentation is something different altogether.
taswegian wrote:Surveyors already have cm accuracy so suspect this is aimed at consumer GPS.
Spatial data has been under pressure to produce 'more accurate' data for a while now.

Be interesting when GDA 2020 hits the deck.
http://www.ga.gov.au/scientific-topics/positioning-navigation/geodesy/datums-projections/gda2020

I don't think the budget announcement is unexpected, more a politically timed event to aid their well being. :roll:

Yep :)

Overall I think this is a good thing (notwithstanding spending priorities relative to education, homelessness etc, which is always an issue that gets overlooked) - no conspiracy just Australia catching up on something that's been around for a while elsewhere.
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby GPSGuided » Thu 10 May, 2018 5:33 pm

Are we certain this is what they are doing with the money. WAAS has been in the US for over a decade now and was using it with my first eTrex there.
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby taswegian » Thu 10 May, 2018 6:49 pm

 improve the “accuracy, integrity and availability of satellite navigation”
I'm still thinking this is more about the actual accuracy of data as opposed to accurate GPS. (hence reference to integrity)
That will give certainty to data that is safely within the relative inaccuracies of consumer grade GPS.

Currently data can have inherent true accuracy ranging from 10cm way out to 20, 25 metres, even worse.

There will need appropriate hardware to give 10cm accuracy .
I can't see our current range of GPS be they navigation systems Android or Apple suddenly becoming more accurate just due to a heap more satellites, signals from other sources etc.
There will need software updates at least and I can't see too many devices where the manufacturers offer such upgrades on meagre consumer devices.
The big players for surveyors do offer upgrades but not on older models, and those devices aren't cheap consumer prices.
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby South_Aussie_Hiker » Thu 10 May, 2018 11:11 pm

Walkfatboywalk is right on the money with the description.

The money will be spent on hardware for correction data sent via satellite, not on assisting US hardware upgrades/purchases.

It’s essentially dragging the Australian aviation and maritime sectors into about 2005.
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby Xplora » Fri 11 May, 2018 5:21 am

The only reason I would need 10cm accuracy is to find my food drop buried under a metre of snow. Otherwise it is not relevant to me bushwalking. Geo Caches may like it.
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby GPSGuided » Fri 11 May, 2018 7:44 am

So what’s the reason for this sudden rush to implement WAAS and similar here in Australia when systems with far better resolution (compared to GPS) are coming on line? I understand WAAS is specific to GPS, right?
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby Warin » Fri 11 May, 2018 8:15 am

Waste of money a far as I'm concerned. If I cannot figure out things with a 10m accuracy .... a 10cm accuracy is not likely to help .... as the map I have is the problem? (Or it could be me!)

Would be better spent on health and education.
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby Walk_fat boy_walk » Fri 11 May, 2018 9:06 am

Warin wrote:Waste of money a far as I'm concerned. If I cannot figure out things with a 10m accuracy .... a 10cm accuracy is not likely to help .... as the map I have is the problem? .

For you and your own requirements maybe. But like it or not the world is moving towards highly automated and interconnected transport, industry and infrastructure etc. including (but not limited to) driverless transport, aircraft, manufacturing, logistics etc. that require ultra-high accuracy positioning. Saying it's a "waste of money" is shortsighted as, from a pure economics perspective, the flow-ons from enabling that tech will return the investment many times over (which can then, in theory, be spent on hospitals, education etc., but we know that won't necessarily (or likely) eventuate). Conversely, not investing in tech like this risks Australia being left behind and suffering the resultant economic ill-effects (at the expense of the theoretical investment in more essential services :| ). Can you imagine if we'd bought into the rhetoric of some years ago of "why would anyone need internet speeds faster than dial-up??".

All this "it doesn't concern me/waste of money" talk has a bit of Casper Jonquil about it.
GPSGuided wrote:So what’s the reason for this sudden rush to implement WAAS and similar here in Australia when systems with far better resolution (compared to GPS) are coming on line?

See above.
GPSGuided wrote:I understand WAAS is specific to GPS, right?

I think the specific implementation of SBAS called WAAS was ( :lol: ) GPS-specific (and US-specific too maybe??) but I'm not sure if (honestly don't know) the new govt system being touted is specifically WAAS, or rather augmentation in general, which is a broader concept that can be applied to any radionav-sat system. In theory there is no limit to the amount of augmentation streams can be transmitted from a satellite... so no reason it couldn't include GLONASS, QZ, Compass, Gallileo or whatever other loosely-organised swarm of tin cans there are in the sky.
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby Geevesy » Fri 11 May, 2018 9:49 am

Walk_fat boy_walk wrote:But like it or not the world is moving towards highly automated and interconnected transport, industry and infrastructure etc. including (but not limited to) driverless transport, aircraft, manufacturing, logistics etc. that require ultra-high accuracy positioning.


WFBW is right on the money here - 10cm is required for driverless cars and other precision applications (agriculture, maritime to a certain extent). GDA2020 is also being brought in for this reason also. Once the SBAS is up and running, we'll have all sorts of non-surveyors using equipment that borders survey-grade accuracy and the push is on to make this as "automated" and as simple as possible. Last thing we want is for someone in a driverless car accidentally putting AGD into their system instead of GDA and ending up 200 metres from the right lane... :?
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby michael_p » Fri 11 May, 2018 10:33 am

Might be money to improve the CORS Network across the country. Currently CORS is 20cm, getting this down to 10cm would be good for surveyors et al.

EDIT:
Page 28 of the Budget Papers 1, here: https://www.budget.gov.au/2018-19/conte ... 1_full.pdf
Money is for a part of GA called DEA: http://www.ga.gov.au/dea/home
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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby Walk_fat boy_walk » Sat 12 May, 2018 8:27 am

michael_p wrote:Might be money to improve the CORS Network across the country. Currently CORS is 20cm, getting this down to 10cm would be good for surveyors et al.

EDIT:
Page 28 of the Budget Papers 1, here: https://www.budget.gov.au/2018-19/conte ... 1_full.pdf
Money is for a part of GA called DEA: http://www.ga.gov.au/dea/home
Thanks for the link. So yeah the bulk of the money is for SBAS, so separate/adjunct to existing satnav networks, but some is also being spent on terrestrial ground stations. Interestingly the statement also said accuracy would improve 10cm to 3cm within mobile coverage areas, which suggests a sort of GBAS implementation via mobile networks as well?

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Re: Hidden in the Federal Budget: GPS improvements...

Postby taswegian » Sat 12 May, 2018 9:20 am

Not wanting to burst the euphoria but. Unless data is available to accuracies far better than current then even sub-centimetre GPS (GNNS) will still not lead you to the supposed feature any more accurately than the current ±1-3 metre devices would.

Unless you have qualified data then the rest doesn't automatically follow.
Cadastral boundaries are just one good example and there's many others.

I'm not suggesting no need for accurate receivers, that's inevitable anyway with ever increasing technology. I'm not confident the data behind all this has the capacity to satisfy the accuracy these will deliver. Yet.
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30cm Accuracy GPS Phones

Postby michael_p » Sun 01 Jul, 2018 11:11 am

30cm accuracy GPS phones now available: https://www.gsa.europa.eu/newsroom/news ... its-market
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