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Launchpad: Mobile mapping, timing modules and UAVs

July 17, 2023  - By

A roundup of recent products in the GNSS and inertial positioning industry from the July 2023 issue of GPS World magazine.


TIMING

Image: Hexagon

PTP Firmware
To synchronize accurate time from GNSS

The 7.09.00 firmware with a precise timing protocol (PTP) feature enables users to synchronize accurate time from GNSS with other devices and sensors on a shared network. The 7.09.00 firmware’s PTP feature brings stable timing to a user’s other sensor systems connected through a local network to best support positioning, navigation and timing (PNT) and automotive and autonomous applications. The firmware includes SPAN GNSS+INS technology improvements — including a secondary INS solution for built-in redundancy and reliability in challenging conditions. The enhancements are available on all OEM7 cards and enclosures, including all PwrPak7 and CPT7 enclosure variants. The 7.09.00 firmware also features improvements to the time to first fix, a secondary SPAN solution for a more accurate and reliable GNSS+INS output and more. The 7.09.00 firmware is not for precision agriculture applications and is not supported on NovAtel’s SMART antenna products.
Hexagon | NovAtel, novatel.com

Image: Furuno

Timing Antenna
A multi-GNSS and high-performance device

The AU-500 antenna is suitable for time synchronization applications. It supports all constellations in the L1 and L5 bands, including GPS, QZSS, GLONASS, Galileo, BeiDou, and NavIC. A built-in noise filter eliminates interference in the vicinity of 1.5 GHz caused by 4G/LTE mobile base stations as well as other radio waves that can adversely affect GNSS reception. The antenna is equipped with lightening protection and features a high-quality polymer radome that prevents snow accumulation. It is also waterproof and dustproof in compliance with IP67. The AU-500 achieves the best performance in time accuracy and robustness fundamental in critical infrastructure, when combined with Furuno’s GNSS receiver, GT-100. The antenna will be available this month.
Furuno, furuno.com

The u-blox NEO-F10T (Image: u-blox)

Timing Module
Dual-band and secure for 5G communications

The NEO-F10T offers nanosecond-level timing accuracy, meeting the stringent timing requirements for 5G communications. It is compliant with the u-blox NEO form factor (12.2 mm x 16 mm), allowing space-constrained designs to be realized without the need to compromise on size. The NEO-F10T is the successor to the NEO-M8T module, providing an easy upgrade path to dual-band timing technology. This allows NEO-M8T users to access nanosecond-level timing accuracy and enhanced security. Dual-band technology mitigates ionospheric errors and greatly reduces timing errors, without the need of an external GNSS correction service. Additionally, when within the operational area of a satellite-based augmentation system (SBAS), the NEO-F10T offers the possibility to improve the timing performance by using the ionospheric corrections provided by the SBAS system.
The NEO-F10T supports all four GNSS and L1/L5/E5a configurations, simplifying global deployments. It includes advanced security features such as secure boot, secure interfaces, configuration lock and T-RAIM to provide the highest-level timing integrity and ensure reliable, uninterrupted service.
u-blox, u-blox.com


MOBILE

Image: Unicore Communications

Image: Unicore Communications

GNSS RTK Module
A high precision module for multiple applications

The UM960 module can be used for a wide range of applications, such as robotic mowers, deformation monitoring, UAVs, handheld GIS, and more. It features a high position fix rate and provides accurate and reliable GNSS positioning data. The UM960 module supports BDS B1I/B2I/B3I/B1c/B2a, GPS L1/L2/L5, Galileo E1/E5b/E5a, GLONASS G1/G2, and QZSS L1/L2/L5. The module also has 1,408 channels. In addition to its small size, the UM960 features low power consumption — less than 450 mW. The UM960 also supports single point positioning and real-time kinematic (RTK) positioning data output at 20 Hz.
Unicore Communications, unicore.euTualcom

CRPA System
A GPS/GNSS anti-jamming system

This system eliminates interference by applying novel beam forming techniques. With an 8-array CRPA antenna, the system can assure the normal operation of a GNSS receiver in the presence of multiple jamming sources. The anti-jam GNSS CRPA system can be deployed using various configurations and operates with civil and military GPS receivers for land, sea, air platforms (including unmanned aerial systems), and fixed installations. The device has an embedded GNSS receiver that supports all satellite constellations. The device is lightweight and compact. It requires minimal integration training and easily integrates into new or legacy platforms. The antenna also offers assured positioning, navigation and timing.
Tualcom, tualcom.com

KP Vehicle Antenna

IoT Antennas
Rugged and designed to enhance connectivity

KP Performance Antennas’ internet of things (IoT) multiband combination antennas are designed to enhance connectivity for vehicle fleets and base stations. The IoT multiband combination antennas have dedicated ports for cellular, Wi-Fi and GPS bands. They are also indoor and outdoor IP69K rated and can withstand harsh environmental conditions, such as extreme temperatures, water and dust. The antennas are suitable for transportation emergency response and agriculture applications. The IoT multiband combination antennas are in-stock and available now.
KP Performance Antennas, kpperformance.com

Image: Tallysman Wireless

Smart Antennas
With integrated technology for centimeter-accuracy

PointPerfect PPP-RTK augmented smart antennas combine the ZED-F9R high precision GNSS and the NEO-D9S L-band receivers from u-blox and Tallysman Accutenna technology. The multi-band (L1/L2 or L1/L5) architecture removes ionospheric errors, and the multi-stage enhanced XF filtering improves noise immunity while relying on the dual-feed Accutenna element to mitigate multi-path signal interference rejection. Some versions of the new smart antenna solutions include an inertial measurement unit (for dead reckoning) and an integrated L-band corrections receiver to ensure operation beyond terrestrial network reach. The PointPerfect GNSS augmentation service is now available in North America, Europe and parts of Asia Pacific.
Tallysman Wireless, tallysman.com/u-blox, u-blox.com


SURVEYING & MAPPING

Photo:

Airborne Laser Scanner
Suitable for mapping applications

The compact and lightweight VQ-580 II-S meets the increasing requirements of compact laser scanners for medium- and wide-area mapping as well as for corridor mapping. The successor of the VQ-580 II airborne laser scanner, provides a maximum measurement range of 2.45 m. It can be integrated with gyro-stabilized mounts as well as into the VQX-1 Wing Pod. It features high accuracy ranging based on waveform-lidar technology. The VQ-580 II-S also has a mechanical and electrical interface for inertial measurement unit (IMU)/GNSS integration.
RIEGL, rieglusa.com

Photo:

Tablet and GNSS Solution
For surveying applications

The RT5 rugged tablet data collector and the RTk5 GNSS solution, which integrate the form factor of the RT5 with real-time kinematic GNSS performance, are suitable for land surveyors, engineers, GIS professionals, and users in need of advanced GNSS positioning with an RTK rover. The RT5 is designed for surveying, stakeouts, construction layout and GIS mapping, and is bundled with Carlson SurvPC — the Windows-based data collection program. The RT5 can run SurvPC with Esri OEM for use in the field. The RTk5 adds an advanced GNSS solution to the RT5, enabling accuracy in a compact, light and versatile package. It comes with a custom-built pole and cradle, a survey-grade antenna, and a small portable helix antenna for handheld GNSS use.
Carlson Software, carlsonsw.comDJI Enterprise

Lidar and RGB Solution
Suitable for aerial surveying

The Zenmuse L1 integrates a Livox lidar module, a high-accuracy inertial measurement unit (IMU), and a camera with a 1 in CMOS on a 3-axis stabilized gimbal. When used with Matrice 300 real-time kinematic (RTK) and DJI Terra, the L1 forms a complete solution that gives users real-time 3D data, capturing the details of complex structures and delivering highly accurate reconstructed models. Users can render centimeter-accurate reconstructions with the high-accuracy IMU, a vision sensor for positioning accuracy, and the incorporation of GNSS data. The solution’s IP54 rating allows the L1 to be operated in rainy or foggy environments. The lidar module’s active scanning method enables users to fly at night.
DJI Enterprise, enterprise.dji.com

Mapping Platform
Real-time, crowd-sourced map data

CityStream Live is a real-time mapping (RTM) platform that enables the mobility industry — including connected vehicles, maps, mobility services, digital twins or smart city applications — to access a continuous stream of crowdsourced road data. This platform provides real-time data on nearly every road across the United States at a reduced cost. Utilizing a crowdsourcing network and artificial intelligence software, CityStream Live offers users and developers a live data feed to increase situational awareness, enhance driving capabilities, increase safety and more. By combining massive data aggregation with real-time data curation, CityStream Live is the first platform to deliver road data streams in real time and at scale, supporting several urban and highway use cases.
Nexar, us.getnexar.com

Leica iCON gps 160 (Image: Leica Geosystems)

Leica iCON gps 160 (Image: Leica Geosystems)

Smart Antenna
Contains features that increase productivity on construction sites

The iCON gps 160 is a versatile solution for various applications. It can be used as a base station, as a rover or for machine guidance. The device is a modernization and enhancement of the successful Leica iCON gps 60, which has been well accepted in the market. The result is a smaller, more compact GNSS antenna with additional features and a larger display for ease of use. The Leica iCON gps 160 is particularly suited to complex construction environments with different GNSS requirements because the ability to switch between the different applications is at the users’ fingertips. Besides checking grade, cut and fill, stakeout points and lines, users can also benefit from using this solution for basic-level GNSS machine guidance. It has an integrated color display, a user-friendly interface, smart setup wizards and an intuitive construction-specific workflow to help contractors get the most out of their investment from day one. Size and weight reductions make the iCON gps 160 easy to handle, while the latest GNSS and communication technologies improve data reception.
Leica Geosystems, leica-geosystems.com


UAVPhoto:

Positioning Solution
For UAV delivery applications

The PX-1 RTX is designed for accurate, robust positioning and heading for commercial UAV delivery applications. This solution enables UAV integration companies to add precise positioning capabilities so operators can plan and execute takeoff, navigation and landing tasks as UAV delivery advances to take on more challenging operations. The PX-1 RTX leverages CenterPoint RTX corrections and small, high-performance GNSS-inertial hardware to provide real-time, centimeter-level positioning and accurate inertial-derived true heading measurements. This solution allows operators precise control of UAVs during takeoff and landing to tackle more demanding operations in tight or partially obstructed spaces. It also minimizes operational risks from poor sensor performance or magnetic interference by ensuring greater positioning redundancy, which is especially important as commercial UAV delivery operations venture into difficult urban and suburban environments.
Trimble Applanix, applanix.com

Certification Reference Guide
A guide for the AAM industry

Business and government leaders, engineers, members of the media and any user with an interest in the future of flight can use the Honeywell State of UAS and UAM Certification Guide to help navigate and communicate the complexities of vehicle certification and operational approval across multiple vehicle segments. Industry professionals can access the living document online at aerospace.honeywell.com/us/en/products-and-services/industry/urban-air-mobility. The certification reference guide summarizes evolving Federal Aviation Administration and European Union Aviation Safety Agency rules across multiple advanced air mobility (AAM) segments. It also links to documents that AAM professionals can reference to better understand detailed certification requirements.
Honeywell Aerospace, aerospace.honeywell.com

Photo:

Image: A2Z Drone Delivery

Delivery UAV
Suitable for aerial mapping, UAV inspection, forestry services, search and rescue operations, water sample collection, offshore deliveries, mining, and more

The RDSX Pelican leverages a hybrid vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) airframe with no control surfaces to combine the reliability and flight stability of a multirotor platform, with the extended range of a fixed-wing craft. With no ailerons, elevator, or rudder, the Pelican’s durable design eliminates common points of failure and extends operational time between maintenance overhauls. Designed to meet the 55 lb takeoff weight limitation for Federal Aviation Administration Part 107 compliance, the Pelican can carry payloads of 5 kg on missions up to 40 km, roundtrip. The Pelican can be optimized for extended range operations or to deliver payloads from altitude with the company’s RDS2 UAV delivery winch. Available in multiple configurations, the RDSX Pelican can be customized for an array of missions. The Pelican enables deliveries from altitude where spinning propellers are kept far from people and property, mitigating consumer privacy concerns of low-flying UAVs while abating intrusive rotor noise. Alternatively, for missions in which the UAV can safely land at its destination, a simple servo-release mechanism can release payloads and expand the Pelican’s payload capacity.
A2Z Drone Delivery, a2zdronedelivery.com

UAS
Suitable for mapping applications

The Trinity Pro UAS features Quantum-Skynode autopilot, using a Linux mission computer. This provides additional onboard computing power, increased internal storage, versatility and interoperability. Included in the Trinity Pro system is QBase 3D operations software. As the Trinity Pro is built on the Trinity F90+ UAS, its new capabilities include planning functions for missions requiring takeoff and landing at different locations, allowing for efficient and safe long corridor flights and beyond visual line of sight operations. The platform also incorporates advanced self-diagnostics to ensure safe operation. The UAS now includes an enhanced terrain- following system. Additionally, improvements to trigger point calculations results in improved image overlap and higher data quality. The Trinity Pro features automatic wind simulation for crash avoidance in bad weather and a linear approach for landing. The UAS is equipped with a downfacing lidar scanner that provides highly accurate ground avoidance and landing control. The system features USB-C ports for faster data transfer. The Trinity Pro is protected against dust and water damage and features increased wind limits of up to 14 m/s in cruise mode and 11 m/s during hover.
Quantum Systems, quantum-systems.com

About the Author: Maddie Saines

Maddie has a B.A. in Journalism and Promotional Communication from Cleveland State University and has years of marketing and journalistic experience under her belt. She joins the editorial staff at GPS World and team at North Coast Media after working in professional sports for over six years.