United Nations/Russian Federation Workshop on the Applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems

Krasnoyarsk, Russian Federation, 18 - 22 May 2015

Organized jointly by the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs and the Russian Federal Space Agency (ROSCOSMOS)

Co-organized and co-sponsored by the International Committee on Global Navigation Satellite Systems

Hosted by the Reshetnev Information Satellite Systems Joint Stock Company

Updated Information


The Workshop will address the use of global navigation satellite systems (GNSS) for various applications that can provide sustainable social and economic benefits, in particular for developing countries. Current and planned projects that use GNSS technology, including the GLObalnaya NAvigatsionnaya Sputnikovaya Sistema (GLONASS) of the Russian Federation, for both practical applications and scientific explorations will be presented. Cooperative efforts and international partnerships for capacity-building, training and research, including the activities of the GLONASS learning centre will also be presented.

The Workshop programme will include plenary sessions described below and also sufficient time for discussions among participants to identify the priority areas where pilot projects should be launched and examine possible partnerships that could be established. In addition, a half-day technical tour will be arranged by the Local Organizing Committee during the Workshop.

For details, see Information Note

The magazine "Coordinates" on positioning, navigation and beyond is the media partner for this workshop. Visit them online at: http://mycoordinates.org.

Thematic Sessions

Session 1: Current and Planned GNSS and Satellite-Based Augmentation Systems

The Global Positioning System (GPS) of the United States of America and the Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS) of the Russian Federation are currently fully operational global navigation satellite systems (GNSS). Next generation GNSS, that are currently being developed, include the modernized GPS and continued revitalization of GLONASS, as well as the European Satellite Navigation System (GALILEO), China's BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS), the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) and Japan's Quasi-Zenith Satellite System (QZSS). Each of these navigation satellite systems will bring extra satellites and signals to deliver better accuracy, reliability and availability. As new systems emerged, signal compatibility and interoperability among GNSS, as well as transparency in the provision of open civil services, would be key factors in ensuring that civil users received maximum benefit from GNSS applications.

In the first session of the Workshop, the current status and planned programmes of aforementioned GNSS as well as Satellite-Based Augmentation Systems (SBAS) will be presented to share the most updated information on the GNSS and SBAS in the world.

Session 2: GNSS-based Applications

Satellite navigation and positioning data were now used in a wide range of areas, which included mapping and surveying, monitoring of the environment, precision agriculture and natural resources management, disaster warning and emergency response, aviation, maritime and land transportation and research areas such as climate change and ionospheric studies. GNSS applications offered a cost-effective way of pursuing sustainable economic growth while protecting the environment.

The Session will illustrate various GNSS-based applications focusing on, but not limited to: surveying and geodesy; aviation; road, rail and engineering applications; geographic information system (GIS) mapping; precision farming; operation in marine environment; positioning and navigation challenges in the Arctic; commercial applications of GNSS.

Session 3: GNSS and Space/Atmospheric Weather Monitoring

In the last few years different institutions had begun to deploy several instruments of different kind (for example, GNSS receivers, ionosondes, magnetometers) in many low latitude countries in Africa, South America and Southeast Asia, over which the ionosphere had remained less known because of the scarce distribution of ionospheric sensors. As a consequence the new sets of data now available were expected to make possible improvements in ionospheric modelling efforts, particularly considering data assimilation techniques. Additionally, some specific phenomena that take place in this region could be envisaged. Since the ionosphere is the major error source in GNSS receivers, an improved knowledge of the low latitude ionosphere would mitigate the ionospheric effects on GNSS positioning applications (e.g. precision agriculture, environmental monitoring, civil aviation) in the same geographic region. (Additional information is available at: http://www.iswi-secretariat.org.)

In the Session, informative presentations will be provided on atmospheric monitoring (troposphere) to improve numerical weather predictions and space weather monitoring (ionosphere) for space situation awareness.

Session 4: GNSS Reference Frames/Systems and Reference Station Networks

Development projects, applications, services or products requiring georeferencing, require a uniform coordinate reference system. Most countries have some form of national reference frame or system. These reference frames/systems are usually based on local origin or datum point, which restrict their use to a particular country. This makes cross-border mapping, development and planning projects difficult. This therefore calls for the establishment of a common and uniform continental reference coordinates frames/systems. (Additional information is available at: http://www.unoosa.org/oosa/en/ourwork/icg/resources/Regl-ref.html)

The presentations in the Session will provide programme updates on regional and national reference frames/systems and perspectives for a regional cooperative mechanism as well as on International GNSS Services (IGS) and other initiatives, Continuously Operating Reference Stations (CORS) network and multi-GNSS environment.

Session 5: Capacity building, training and education in the field of GNSS

Efforts to build capacity in space science and technology are considered a major focus of the Office for Outer Space Affairs and are of specific interest to ICG with particular reference to GNSS and its applications. Such efforts aim to provide support to the regional centres for space science and technology education affiliated to the United Nations, which would also act as information centres for ICG. (Additional information is available at: http://www.unoosa.org/oosa/en/ourwork/psa/regional-centres/index.html)

GNSS education opportunities at different levels/needs and GNSS education tools/open source software related to GNSS will be presented in the Session as well as specialized master's programmes for long-term professional education and support to PhD training and networking in GNSS.

Objectives and Expected Outcomes

The objectives of the Workshop will be to:

  1. strengthen regional information and data exchange networks on the use of GNSS technology, including various training programmes and capacity-building needs in GNSS and its applications;
  2. develop a regional plan of action that would contribute to the wider use of multi-constellation GNSS and its applications, including the possibility of one or more national or regional pilot projects, or both, in which interested institutions could incorporate the use of GNSS/GLONASS technology;
  3. define recommendations and findings to be forwarded as a contribution to the ICG.

The expected outcomes of the workshop are:

  1. recommendations and findings on discussed topics;
  2. preliminary agreement of cooperation between countries in the region and the GNSS continuously operating reference station (CORS) networks;
  3. action plan addressing identified issues/concerns.
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