GLONASS will catch up with GPS in accuracy by 2015

    Specialists of the General Staff of the Russian Federation expect that the Russian global positioning system GLONASS will catch GPS by accuracy by 2015. This will happen thanks to the space geodetic system being developed in Russia, Rear Admiral Sergey Kozlov , the chief of the military topographic department of the General Staff of the RF Armed Forces (VTU GSh VS) , said .

    The Russian space geodetic system will consist of three segments: ground-based observation, control and information processing points (first segment), a high-orbit GLONASS satellite constellation (second segment) and a third — until the missing segment between them — two Geo-IR-2 mid- orbit geodetic devices on sun-synchronous orbit with an altitude of about 1000 km.

    SKA Geo-IR-2 is equipped with a high-precision Sadco altimeter manufactured by Thales Alenia Space (France) and satellite navigation equipment for measurements along the SKA-VKA line. The presence of the SKA-VKA measuring line is a fundamentally new element, due to which the accuracy of the GLONASS system readings will be significantly increased.

    Work on the launch of the SKA Geo-IK-2 is carried out by specialists of the military topographic department of the General Staff of the Russian Federation at the expense of the budget of the Ministry of Defense. These costs are written in a separate line in the Federal Target Program “Global Navigation System (2011-2020)”.

    The first of the two Geo-IR-2 satellites was launched on February 1, 2011, but unsuccessfully: due to errors in the operation of the upper stage instead of a circular orbit of 1000 km, the device entered an elliptical orbit with altitudes from 369 to 1021 km. They wanted to transfer the satellite into the calculated orbit, but this did not have enough fuel. One month after launch, the connection with the satellite was lost .

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