Wednesday, May 20, 2009

GPS - is the sky falling?

According to the US Government Accountability Office (GAO) , "It is uncertain whether the Air Force will be able to acquire new satellites in time to maintain current GPS service without interruption". As you may know, the USAF maintains and controls the Navstar GPS system. The GAO estimates that the full constellation of 24 satellites may fall below the 95% committed/ expected availability in 2010 through 2014, with the probability of a full constellation falling to 80% for 2012. The report and executive summary are available here. So, will the world as we know it come to its Mayan Calendar end, or will the EU's Galileo, China's COMPASS and Russia's GLONASS GPS systems see here an incentive to expand their operations as a global public service?

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