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Why Australia is spending millions to make GPS signals more accurate

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Maybe Australians haven’t noticed, but the little blue marker showing where you are in Google Maps, or even Apple Maps, isn’t as accurate as it could be.

It’s why Australia is spending over A$260 million (US$193 million) to invest in satellite infrastructure and technology to improve GPS accuracy, as part of the Federal Government’s budget announcement.

As it stands, Australians get uncorrected GPS signals that are accurate to five metres (5.4 yards).

To improve that, the majority of the funds will be invested in a Satellite Based Augmentation System (SBAS), which aims to correct GPS accuracy to around a metre (1.09 yards), across Australia and its maritime zone. Read more…

More about Australia, Gps, Satellites, Global Positioning System, and Science

How GPS keeps up with the continent that's in constant motion

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Nothing on the Earth’s solid surface is static because all land is moving very slowly due to continental drift. This very slow movement affects everything around you in the same way so you can’t tell it is happening, unless you are able to very accurately measure where on the Earth’s surface you are.

The Australian continent, perched on the planet’s fastest moving tectonic plate, is drifting at about seven centimetres a year to the northeast. This is taking features marked on our maps out of line with the global navigation satellite systems (GNSS) such as GPS.

More about Geocentric Datum Of Australia, Tectonic Plates, Continental Drift, Australia, and Gps

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