finished building New National Trust Network for GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) of the Italian Space Agency (ASI), an infrastructure of fundamental importance to be able to provide up-to-date and accurate geodetic information to the scientific community, professional operators and businessmen. The new network was built by e-GEOS, which is a Telespazio company (80%) and owned by ASI (20%).
Thanks to the use of the latest generation technologies, 46 stations evenly distributed on the Italian peninsula will allow to acquire signals generated by all satellite navigation systems in the world, such as US GPS, Russian GLONASS, Chinese Beidou and, above all, European Galileo.
The ASI GNSS network, which was designed and developed to provide indispensable support to global geodetic networks (such as those of the International GNSS Service IGS and the European Reference Frame EUREF), will produce data for the management of the ITRF (International Terrestrial Reference Framework). Moreover, it will allow the creation of products and services: from determining the orbits of GNSS satellites (with centimeter precision) to time synchronization (better than nanoseconds), useful for on-site applications and supporting satellites equipped with GNSS receivers.
The new network of ASI and e-GEOS will allow to intensify and qualify the joint scientific and operational development activities that have been carried out for more than 25 years at the ASI Space Center in Matera in the field of meteorology, the study of climate change and from sweather speed. In particular, it will be possible to provide the national supply chain – from research centers to SMEs, from universities to large companies – useful products and services for the development of innovative high-accuracy GPS applications, which can be used in the most diverse sectors: from professional applications to those who They work in the field of precision agriculture.
In order to contribute to the scientific activities, some new GNSS stations have been installed in places of special interest where there are already structures that can be used for this purpose. Examples include: the ASI Space Center in Matera, home to the Matera Laser Ranging MLRO Observatory and a VLBI (Very Long Interferometry) antenna whose data is used to make accurate geodesic measurements in space; ASI’s new SDSA (Sardinia Deep Space Antenna) operating base in San Basilio (California), where the INAF-built Sardinia Radio Telescope SRT is located, a versatile instrument for radio astronomy, geodynamic studies and space science; The European EGO Gravitational Observatory in Cascina (PI), where the large VIRGO interferometer was installed for the purpose of detecting gravitational waves; Various bases of the Air Force and the headquarters of weather stations.
“Creation of the new National GNSS Trust Network – Project Director comments, Giuseppe Bianco ASI – not only as a result of the efforts made by ASI and e-GEOS for its implementation, but also as a result of the great availability of all bodies and organizations that today host new GNSS stations. The entire program will make it possible to provide innovative information in the field of geodesy, of which the Matera Space Center is a focal point.”
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