The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs and the Faculty of Maritime Studies of the University of Rijeka
International Committee on Global Navigation Satellite Systems (ICG)
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A five-day workshop on global navigation satellite systems (GNSS) technology and its applications in Baška, Croatia, from 21 to 25 April 2013 is being organized by the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (OOSA) in cooperation with the Faculty of Maritime Studies of the University of Rijeka as part of the activities of the United Nations Programme on Space Applications, for the benefit of the countries in Europe. The Workshop will be hosted by the Faculty of Maritime Studies of the University of Rijeka.
Workshop participants will discuss how GNSS-enabling technology can strengthen a network of national reference stations and promote the interoperability of navigation, positioning and timing systems in the region. An overview of a wide range of GNSS applications existing today and prospects for the future will have to be given to developments aiming to the following:
- all aspects of the agriculture industry, from basic rural cadastre and surveying to advanced precision agriculture, benefit from the use of GNSS. Agro-climatic and ecologic
- economical zonings, crop inventory, monitoring and forecasting are examples of agricultural activities where positioning and timing are of paramount importance. In the area of climate change, different factors and mechanisms drive land use and transformation. In many cases, climate, technology and economics appear to be determinants of land use. At the same time, land conversion is an adaptive feedback mechanism that farmers use to smooth the impact of climate variability, especially during extremely wet or dry periods;
- monitoring and observing the Earth and its weather systems. Satellites gather data for global climate models, and efforts continue in developing refined models that can be used in regional and national settings. The use of GNSS has been significant in making detailed observations of key meteorological parameters, whose measurement stability, consistency and accuracy could make it possible to quantify long-term climate change trends; and
- the area of transport, studies have shown that civil aviation will significantly benefit from the use of GNSS. These benefits include: improved navigation coverage in areas currently lacking conventional tracking aids, accurate and reliable information about aircraft positions and routes that enables safe and efficient management of air traffic, (particularly on airport approaches). Road transport applications can automatically revise a route to account for traffic congestion, changes in weather conditions or road works. Similarly, at sea, GNSS technologies can provide efficient route planning, collision avoidance and increased efficiency in search and rescue situations. For rail transport, GNSS offers enhanced cargo monitoring and assists track surveying. In addition, communication systems, electrical power grids, and financial networks all rely on precision timing for synchronization and operational efficiency. For example, wireless telephone and data networks use GPS time to keep all of their base stations in perfect synchronization. This allows mobile handsets to share limited radio spectrum more efficiently.
The information note, the programme and other relevant documents are available on UNOOSA's website.