Archive for 2015

4 new Galileo satellites

Tuesday, November 17th, 2015

This year we have had two successful Galileo launches one on 27 March and the second on 11 September. 

It is good to report that these 4 satellites were delivered to the correct orbits as opposed to the launches last year (more on those below!)

The 27 March launched delivered satellites E26 and E22 to the B plane correctly. The E22 started transmitting for navigation users on 10 September. The E26 started transmitting on 2 October. Both satellites continue to operate normally and 2 frequency data is readily available from the IGS Data centers.

The 11 September launch placed in orbit satellites E24 and the A plane of the constellation. Both satellites had a short period of active navigation signal on 10 October and then were available on a continuous basis to navigation users from 6 November. 

The two satellites delivered to the incorrect orbit late in 2014 have had their perigee raised and the orbit circular isles as much as possible with the limited on-board capabilities.  The satellites will be used for scientific studies such as the investigation into general relativity just started between ESA and two German research institutes. 

In a few weeks two more Galileo satellites will be launched from Kourou atop a Soyuz rocket.  This will be the last ‘paired launch’ of Galileo as we switch next year to Ariane 5 ‘cuadruple launches’ which will help to complete the Galileo constellation much faster.

Happy positioning to all!


At the GA !!

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

This week I am here in Australia helping my friends an international colleagues of the Geoscience Australia (GA) Geodesy section.

They are working hard to design and code their own GNSS processing software, and I am helping them on project and quality management issues, which for such a complex software project are very important so that coding and modeling complications , which will always happen, are not complete show stoppers, since it’s possible to take corrective actions early enough to move certain problematic issues off the critical path to declare the project a success.


Creating a full GNSS processing software is a very complex endevour, and I admire the GA for undertaking this challenging task to equipe Australia with independent GNSS processing capabilities. Currently on the GNSS precision field the most popular softwares are: from JPL ; GIPSY, MIT ; GAMIT, Berne Univ ; BERNESE each one used by more than one of the IGS Analysis Centers; where we generate the best GPS and GLONASS precise orbit and clock bias products.

The GA aim to become an IGS analysis center with their own software and a high precision “PPP-Ambiguity Resolution” solution provider.

Being here in Australia for the first time has been a real treat and a very enjoyable experience, it’s a modern and forward looking country with great, welcoming people and very good infrastructure. And I got to see some grey kangaroos!!


Happy Positioning!!