Compass on track for global coverage

While the Russian GLONASS constellation is slowly approaching full operational status, developers of future multi-GNSS systems also need to focus on the likely timeline for availability of the Chinese Beidou-2 or Compass system.

The successful launch of the latest satellite for the Beidou-2 constellation means that nine such satellites have been placed into orbit since 2007. Further launches are planned for this year and next. And the Chinese authorities reckon to be on course to provide satellite navigation, time and short message services throughout the Asia-Pacific region some time during 2012.

Further launches will follow, with a stated aim of providing global coverage by 2020. The Compass constellation will eventually comprise 35 geostationary satellites.

The Compass GNSS will offer two different services. The freely available civilian service aims to provide an accuracy of 10m for user position, 0.2m/s for user velocity and 50ns for time. The second military service will provide greater accuracy levels.

So with Asia-Pacific coverage imminent and a promise of global coverage to follow, developers of GNSS systems and applications with worldwide markets need to factor Compass functionality into their future projects. Fortunately, testing of systems can begin well in advance of the launch of the remainder of the Compass constellation using the Spirent range of multi-GNSS simulators.

If you have an interest in testing the Compass constellation, get in touch.


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