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Editorial Advisory Board: The “geodesy crisis” and GNSS satellites

January 25, 2023  - By

What are your thoughts on the “geodesy crisis” and what do you propose to address it?

Bernard Gruber

Bernard Gruber

“Evidence seems to be very clear that we, as a country, need geodesists and that there has been a decline in investments, training, and research in geodesy. While our decline relative to China may be shocking, it should not be surprising. U.S. industry and government relentlessly pursues STEM graduates, or those with relevant experience, but that does not meet current needs. Besides maybe surveying, it is unclear to the public what the geodesy profession is all about, why it is needed, and quite frankly, why it is an exciting career choice.”

— Bernard Gruber
Northrop Grumman


Does crowding of low-Earth-orbit (LEO) space — with new satellites and space debris — pose any problems for the launch or operations of GNSS satellites in medium
Earth orbit (MEO)?

Ellen Hall

Ellen Hall

“This was a focused topic at SATELLITE 2022, where the discussion centered on the 6,000 tons of space debris circulating in LEO. Even the smallest piece of debris can be lethal to a satellite, so the key is to track and maneuver where possible. Add to that about 5,000 active satellites and plans to launch tens of thousands of additional ones into LEO over the next few years, and you have a serious problem to overcome. While there are treaties and plans for tracking and maneuvering these satellites, the debris is the real challenge.”

— Ellen Hall 
Spirent Federal Systems


About the Author:


Matteo Luccio, GPS World’s Editor-in-Chief, possesses more than 20 years of experience as a writer and editor for GNSS and geospatial technology magazines. He began his career in the industry in 2000, serving as managing editor of GPS World and Galileo’s World, then as editor of Earth Observation Magazine and GIS Monitor. His technical articles have been published in more than 20 professional magazines, including Professional Surveyor Magazine, Apogeo Spatial and xyHt. Luccio holds a master’s degree in political science from MIT. He can be reached at mluccio@gpsworld.com or 541-543-0525.

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