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Seen & Heard: Russia threatens GPS, protecting sea turtles

January 14, 2022  - 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: lindsay_imagery/E+/Getty Images

Photo: lindsay_imagery/E+/Getty Images

Where Sea Turtles Nest

Florida’s Sea Turtle Grants Program — funded with proceeds from special license-plate sales — were used to purchase Trimble TDC100 and TDC600 handheld GNSS receivers for state park staff to gather data about turtle nesting activity. The staff also uses Esri’s ArcGIS Survey123 field-capture software to report on turtles using the 108 miles of beach in 40 of Florida’s state parks. Negative impacts from commercial fishing, plastic waste and climate change have become a threat to sea turtles, which are now classified as an endangered species.


Concept of vertiport at airport. (Groupe ADP)

Concept of vertiport at airport. (Groupe ADP)

Paris up in the Air

Paris has begun testing electric air taxis at a new site outside the French capital, with an eye toward creating at least two demonstration flight paths during the 2024 Olympics to ferry passengers from nearby airports. Inaugurated in November, the test site is dedicated to new sustainable urban air mobility, and will study the use of electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. Choose Paris Region, Groupe ADP and RATP Group are managing the effort with VoloCity taxis by Volocopter onboard.


Photo: Stanislav Ostranitsa/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

Photo: Stanislav Ostranitsa/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

Russia Threatens GPS

The Kremlin warned it could blow up 32 GPS satellites with its new anti-satellite technology (ASAT), which it tested Nov. 15 on a retired Soviet Tselina-D satellite, according to numerous news reports. Russia then claimed on state television that its new ASAT missiles could obliterate NATO satellites and “blind all their missiles, planes and ships, not to mention the ground forces,” said Russian Channel One TV host Dmitry Kiselyov, rendering the West’s GPS-guided missiles useless. “It means that if NATO crosses our red line, it risks losing all 32 of its GPS satellites at once.”


Bali toll gate. (Photo: dwart/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images)

Bali toll gate. (Photo: dwart/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images)

Indonesia Goes Cashless

Indonesia’s GNSS-based cashless toll system will take effect by the end of 2022, reports Indonesia Expat. The country’s Public Works and Public Housing Ministry plans to have its multi-lane, free-flow-based non-cash toll transaction system implemented on 40 toll roads on the islands of Java and Bali. MLFF uses GNSS plus a map-matching process and special toll road apps on smartphones to determine fees. The system is expected to increase efficiency, effectiveness, security and convenience in conducting toll road payment transactions.

About the Author:


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.

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