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China Plans BeiDou Ground Station in Antarctica

November 12, 2014  - By
Image: GPS World

China plans to build a BeiDou station in Antarctica this summer, according to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald. China’s official Xinhua news agency disclosed the plans.

The facility at Great Wall station in Antarctica will include receivers, auxiliary equipment and a reference station key to improving BieDou’s accuracy, according to the Chinese website.

Project leader Wu Xuefeng said the BeiDou facility would greatly improve China’s Antarctic mapping autonomy and improving the system’s precision.

The BeiDou facility will join others, including Norway’s Trollsat, strategically located in Antarctica to fit that country’s global networks, but which some claim breach the Antarctic Treaty. The treaty says “Antarctica shall be used for peaceful purposes only” and prohibits activities of a military nature.

Norwegian Bard Wormdal, author of The Satellite War, told Fairfax Media, “The Chinese military wants to use BeiDou for instance for guiding all sorts of missiles. A BeiDou base in Antarctica makes the system more reliable and precise.” He first raised alarm over the Norwegian satellite base at its Troll Antarctic station, which he found had been used by the U.S. National Geospatial Intelligence Agency.

Russia has three GLONASS ground stations on the continent.

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