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Seen & Heard: Karma drone down, GLONASS guides missiles

February 4, 2020  - By

“Seen & Heard” is a monthly feature of GPS World magazine, traveling the world to capture interesting and unusual news stories involving the GNSS/PNT industry.

Photo: Karma drone/GoPro

Photo: Karma drone/GoPro

Bad karma

The GoPro Karma drone has been grounded since the new year began, reports The Verge. Multiple owners say their Karma controllers are flashing errors about not receiving a GPS signal, and that they can’t calibrate the compass. They’re not able to fly the drones even after disabling GPS. A GoPro spokesperson told The Verge that it is “actively troubleshooting” the issue.

Going wild at the casino

A Waze ad in January misdirected drivers headed to Atlantic City’s Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa into New Jersey’s Pine Barrens. Jackson Township police helped numerous motorists stuck on unpaved roads about 45 miles from the casino, which is just off the Atlantic City Expressway. The address on the ad was correct, but the location pinned with the ad is actually in the Colliers Mills wildlife area.

Photo: Rock penguins/Charles Bergman/

Photo: Rock penguins/Charles Bergman/

Feed the birds, not the mice

Irish structural engineer John Houston used a Trimble R10 GNSS receiver and Centerpoint RTX to help mitigate a serious threat to Gough Island’s birds. The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds seeks to eradicate invasive mice left from 19th-century ships. The survey will help locate temporary infrastructure for workers to distribute poisoned bait to kill the voracious rodents, which feed on two million defenseless eggs and chicks each year. Though 1,000 kilometers from the nearest reference station, Houston achieved centimeter accuracy on all survey points. See the monster mice here.

Photo: U.S. Marines at Al Asad Air Base in 2018. (Cpl. Jered T. Stone/Marine Corps)

Photo: U.S. Marines at Al Asad Air Base in 2018. (Cpl. Jered T. Stone/Marine Corps)

Missiles guided by GLONASS

According to Israeli military intelligence website DEBKAfile, Russia gave Iran access to GLONASS to target the U.S. base in Iraq on Jan. 8. The strike injured 34 American soldiers. DEBKAfile reports that Russia-provided GLONASS access allowed Iranian missiles to hit with an accuracy of 10 meters at the Ain Assad base in western Iraq. “According to Russian sources, 19 missiles were fired from the territory of Iran, 17 of which hit the targets,” DEBKAfile said.

About the Author: Tracy Cozzens

Senior Editor Tracy Cozzens joined GPS World magazine in 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.