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The Cost/ramifications Of Galileo


The Editor
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Is it just me being my usual cynical self (again) or is this daft new GPS system an utter waste of money??

The first Satellite was launched last week that will ultimately become the European version of GPS - Called Galileo.

Costs have been estimated at circa £3.5 billion. Now we all know what estimated costs are like (remember the Millenium Dome fiasco??). So I think it's fairly safe to say that the eventual final cost of this space junk will be at least double that.

Why do I call it space junk? Well who actually want's it (like the Millenium Dome)?

The American GPS system works and it works well. It has been de-militarilised for some years now and has always been available to the public for free. Can anyone here honestly say that this new fangled Galileo will be offered completely free of charge to us mere mortals. Once this theiving lot of Labour lefties get wind that they can charge for the services everyone will be required to buy a 'Galileo Licence'

The question I ask is.... Are car manufactures going to be asked to install Galileo only navigation equipment in cars imported/built in europe as a condition of sale? Or perhaps they will be required to pay a licence to the government (More revenue for the greedy politicians)

So what will happen? Will owning an american based GPS navigation aid become illegal over here and will the thought police confiscate your nasty american piece of hardware if you are caught using it??!!

The truth of the matter is, £3.5 - £7 billion could be much better spent on our national health service, education system or countless other sensible options.

This system will be run by the private sector and I'm sure they can already smell the money. So what will people do if... sorry I mean WHEN the government starts charging for the privilage of satellite navigation under Galileo?. Well if bespoke car systems are Galileo only then people will say :tsktsk: that. I'll get mysely a TomTom (or similar) and avoid the licence fee !!! :ph34r:

Of course the properganda line is "Oh we don't want to be reliant on a system that is run by the American Military" I feel the truth is much more commercially orientated

I see Galileo failing... SPECTACULARLY !!! :nuke:

Can't say I didn't warn them.....

The Ed

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I take it this is why there are subscription costs etc or are these likely to increase too, Ed?

To my knowledge there hasn't been any announcement to date regarding subscriptions/costs to use Galileo but watch this space. They are going to want to recoup their £billions somehow !!!!

The Ed

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gps is not de-militarilised, go and grab yourself 2 gps systems, a civilian one and a military one, look at the difference in location indication.

in the event of war...or dispute, currently the US can switch off the GPS signal, not a major problem if your trying to get to london from manchester, but more and more military systems depend on a GPS signal.....infact all of the latest british military digital radios require a GPS signal to promp frequency hop.

so from a military point of view, its better to have our own GPS signal.....

you need to look outside the box when it comes to things like this.

GPS was not set up for civilians.......

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The US birds have been in the air for over 10 years now (20 for the earlier launches) and are becoming increasingly unreliable. In addition, they have a resolution of only +/-10m.

Galileo, bird for bird, is significantly cheaper than the US system and has a resolution of 1m.

In addition to it's navigation capabilities, Galileo will also be used by it's subscribers for such toll road monitoring, congestion charging. Without a doubt, auto manufacturers will be offered an incentive to include this system in their new builds.

Galileo will not fail, it will become the industry standard.

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The US birds have been in the air for over 10 years now (20 for the earlier launches) and are becoming increasingly unreliable. In addition, they have a resolution of only +/-10m.

Galileo, bird for bird, is significantly cheaper than the US system and has a resolution of 1m.

In addition to it's navigation capabilities, Galileo will also be used by it's subscribers for such toll road monitoring, congestion charging. Without a doubt, auto manufacturers will be offered an incentive to include this system in their new builds.

Galileo will not fail, it will become the industry standard.

This Galileo thingy work in building i think too, is there much point?

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The difference between +/-10 meters or +/-1 meter is totally irrelvant when all you want to do is drive from london to Glasgow and navigate your way to an address.

I admit it becomes important when you are on a military exercise somewhere and you need to know your location to the meter. (Or for weapons guidance for example)

You are correct when you say that the metal up there is getting old (and some transponders on some birds have failed but the American Governement are on a continuous replacement schedule (They don't suddenly want to find themselves without GPS !!)

I understand totally the Military aspect of having your own Global positioning system and this is going to be a Europe joint venture - So I don't know what happens if we go to war against France though !!! :shifty: Maybe one day Britain will get the key to turn it on or off and another day a different country will get the use of the key. Mind you if France doesn't like the rules they will just do their own thing anyway !!

Now Mr Morse, if Galileo is (bird for Bird) cheaper than GPS that must mean we can all look forward to FREE use of it like the GPS sytem yes??!! :blush: (I think not).

My point was not directed at the Military aspect (that's a whole different argument) just the fact that I can't see we will be offered this wonderful all singing all dancing 1 meter accurate Big Brother surveliance, tracking, monitoring, DNA scanning, satellite system for free !!!

Don't want it... Won't use it !!! (Throws toys out of pram and stuffs dummy in mouth !! :yack: )

The Ed

P.S - I remember when the UK tried to land a probe on Mars :lol: - If 30 birds are required to fully deploy Galileo then we will probably have to build 6 or so to make up for ones we lose !! - should be operational by 2075 !! :whistling:

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gps is not de-militarilised, go and grab yourself 2 gps systems, a civilian one and a military one,  look at the difference in location indication.

in the event of war...or dispute, currently the US can switch off the GPS signal, not a major problem if your trying to get to london from manchester, but more and more military systems depend on a GPS signal.....infact all of the latest british military digital radios require a GPS signal to promp frequency hop.

so from a military point of view, its better to have our own GPS signal.....

you need to look outside the box when it comes to things like this.

GPS was not set up for civilians.......

got a spare one in my boot matt and an ECM package :shifty::ph34r:

yes the resolution is different on the mil spec ones and it does make good strategic sense to have a back up option in that sense. Although if we ever go to war with the yanks where the hell are we going to get people to con out of good kit

More to the point though i think there is alot of rumour control needed at the minute the last story i heard was that they are going to use them to check who is building without permission (the orbital demoleculariser is launched next year)

Think this one is a suck it and see but i can see why the worries about the goverment charging mind you if its european and the licence is cheaper in another european country buy it from there :winky:

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gps is not de-militarilised, go and grab yourself 2 gps systems, a civilian one and a military one,  look at the difference in location indication.

in the event of war...or dispute, currently the US can switch off the GPS signal, not a major problem if your trying to get to london from manchester, but more and more military systems depend on a GPS signal.....infact all of the latest british military digital radios require a GPS signal to promp frequency hop.

so from a military point of view, its better to have our own GPS signal.....

you need to look outside the box when it comes to things like this.

GPS was not set up for civilians.......

got a spare one in my boot matt and an ECM package :shifty::ph34r:

yes the resolution is different on the mil spec ones and it does make good strategic sense to have a back up option in that sense. Although if we ever go to war with the yanks where the hell are we going to get people to con out of good kit

More to the point though i think there is alot of rumour control needed at the minute the last story i heard was that they are going to use them to check who is building without permission (the orbital demoleculariser is launched next year)

Think this one is a suck it and see but i can see why the worries about the goverment charging mind you if its european and the licence is cheaper in another european country buy it from there :winky:

There's an awful lot of rumour associated with the objectives of the new system, including using the increased accuracy to enable 'big brother' to know whether you are actually on a motorway subject to toll or a B or A road running parallel to it. If even some of the rumour is true then we'll be paying for the system one way or the other :tsktsk:

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I first looked at gps recievers some time ago (eg early 90's) .

If I remember correctly the american gps system has 2 recivers or data streams a rough approximation data the "L" data or the like and the "P" data.

the "P" data is encrypted and designed for the US military the other data is available to anyone.

The "L" data is subject to Selective availability at the behest of what ever american operational requirements need it to be. from what I saw of this meant that sometimes the cordinates would float around a 100m2 point eg I set it up in the house with a pc data logging and recorded the nema data comming out of the beasty.

The intersting thing is when I looked closely at the datasheets for the first gps recievers available at that time eg "rockwell navstar devices" the operational specs for performance basically stated it could predicit its position while travelling up to about 800mph with quite high turn rates.

This helped form my understanding of the american gps system background eg designed to support cruise missiles and its requirement for nape of the earth flying.

The interesting failing of the reciever was that its height calculation was guarrenteeded never to be better than within 200m odd no matter what the positianal accuracy.

As part of the sales blurb to try and get us to design the reciever into a product there was a small statement about the usage and availability of the reciever along hte lines of

Due to the cost of getting 22 odd satalites in the sky congress bent the american defense department over the table and extracted a promise that would be available to US civies till I think something like 2007 where upon all agreements would be off and then it was up to the DOD what signals would be available. Of course an entire industry has been setup around gps and I think further promises were extracted.

I don't think any US based GPS system can be counted on as life critical eg airbourne or ship navigation because of the fact if your not connected to the US goverment the signal could be turned off.

I think because of this and its military connection the EU decided it would launch its own gps system that would be open and something industry could use without fear of it being turned off.

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