Posted By Bob Skaggs on 10/1/2008 at 1:49 PM
This was in POB's eNews, so
I guess it is Ok to cut and paste it here;
On Sept. 23, the U.S.
Department of Defense (DoD) published notice that it will discontinue support of
codeless/semi-codeless access to GPS on Dec. 31, 2020. "This is the first
action, in the history of GPS, which will render a massive amount of GPS
equipment obsolete," said Eric Gakstatter in GPS World magazine on June 5, 2008.
What does that mean to land surveyors? According to Gakstatter, a GPS
consultant, it's land surveyors and those in the engineering, construction,
deformation-monitoring and high-precision GIS industries that are going to be
affected the most.
"In real terms, this means that any dual frequency
receiver not designed to use L2C will essentially become a paperweight after
December 31, 2020," he said, noting that this includes most dual-frequency
receivers designed from the 1980s to the early 2000s.
The end date,
which was based on projected budgets and current launch schedules, is dependent
upon the availability of at least 24 GPS satellites broadcasting the second and
third coded civil GPS signals. The DoD will reassess the transition date if
significant GPS program delays arise, the Federal Register notice states.
The DoD wants-and expects-users to transition to new equipment over the
next 12 years. If you don't, there is no guarantee that GPS equipment using
codeless/semi-codeless techniques will work. "After the planned transition date,
the characteristics of the L1 P(Y) and L2 P(Y) signals transmitted by any or all
GPS satellites broadcasting two or more civil-coded signals may change without
further notice and may preclude the use of P(Y) coded signals for high accuracy
applications," the notice states.
Regardless of whether it makes sense
from a technology standpoint, this transition is going to hurt financially.
According to Gakstatter, thousands of small- to medium-sized business owners
depend on codeless/semi-codeless dual frequency GPS technology. "It's hard to
swallow that my $40,000 system has a date with the trash bin," Gakstatter said.
I encourage you to read Gakstatter's full article, "Is Dual-Frequency
GPS - As We Know It - Becoming Obsolete?" Then, in POB's November quick poll,
we'll ask you to cast your vote on how-or even if-this transition is going to
-Wendy Lyons, eNews Editor
To read the rest of this thread go to
The end of Free GPS?
October 2, 2008