Gallileo Switches On

 SAR  Comments Off on Gallileo Switches On
Jan 262013
 
On the launchpad: Soyuz VS01 carried the first two satellites of Europe’s Galileo navigation system into orbit.

On the launchpad: Soyuz VS01 carried the first two satellites of Europe’s Galileo navigation system into orbit.

The first switch-on of a Galileo search and rescue package shows it to be working well. Its activation begins a major expansion of the space-based Cospas–Sarsat network, which brings help to air and sea vessels in distress.

The second pair of Europe’s Galileo navigation satellites – launched together on 12 October last year – are the first of the constellation to host SAR search and rescue repeaters. These can pick up UHF signals from emergency beacons aboard ships and aircraft or carried by individuals, then pass them on to local authorities for rescue.

Once the satellites reached their 23 222 km-altitude orbits, a rigorous test campaign began. The turn of the SAR repeater aboard the third Galileo satellite came on 17 January.

“At this stage, our main objective is to check the repeater has not been damaged by launch,” explains ESA’s Galileo SAR engineer Igor Stojkovic. Continue reading »

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Sat Nav Lifejacket Wins UK Gallileo Prize

 maritime accidents  Comments Off on Sat Nav Lifejacket Wins UK Gallileo Prize
Oct 242008
 

GIt probably won’t be on your ship anytime soon but a British company formed by yachtie technophiles, Sci-Tech, has won this years UK Gallileo prize for a lifejacket that tells satellite navigation systems where it, and hence its wearer, is. Literally, it could be a ifesaver in man-overboard situations.

Gallileo, Europe’s answer to the US-controlled GPS system is the EU’s biggest space project. Each year prizes are given to companies and individuals coming up with ideas to use the Gallileo satellite navigation system. Winners get a 20,000 Euro, $40,000, cash prize and support under a business incubation system.

When immersed in water, a device in the Sci-Tech lifejacket connects with a Gallileo or GPS satellite and its co-ordinates transmitted to the vessel or rescue services, rather like the traditional EPIRB. Vessels searching for an MOB can simply feed the data into a commercial navigation system and track the wearer.

More information is available here from the BBC.

SciTech Systems

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