Global Outlook 2018

We've launched the latest edition of our Global Outlook report.

2018 Global Outlook report coverEvery two years the CRCSI undertakes the mighty task of summarising trends --- from many sources --- affecting the global spatial industry. This year’s edition builds on the previous Global Outlook reports published in 2014 and 2016.

The report examines the market size for many of the component parts of the spatial industry and its technologies drawing mostly on previously published material. For example, some estimate that the geospatial industry (comprising Global Navigation Satellite Systems, GIS, Earth Observation, and 3D Scanning) is growing steadily with the 2018 market worth USD $339 billion and forecast to grow to USD $439.2 billion by 2020.

The biggest take-home message from this edition surrounds the fourth industrial revolution and how spatial technologies will substantially add value to many new technologies (listed below). Carrying on the trend of the last five years, we continue to witness tremendous changes in the roles of our spatial data providers.

No longer are they simply supplying data to geospatial developers, the market has opened and we are seeing increased demand for spatial information from mainstream, non-geospatial developers. Core business is evolving from “map-making” to “digital insight”.

Price Waterhouse Coopers sees the Australian industry sectors ‘Space and Spatial’ when together as an emerging medium-sized industry sector with a strong growth path, strong competitive advantage and moderate potential for employment growth. The report delves into why this is and the authors, Dr Isabel Coppa, Dr Peter Woodgate and Dr Zaffar Mohammad-Ghouse, highlight the three interconnected trends of global technology developments, global spatial markets and technologies, and the global economic picture.

Global outlook story PWC space and spatial graphThe report also includes a review of allied technologies that will be influenced by or will influence, the use of spatial technologies. These are broadly referred to as the cyber-physical systems and comprise many digital technologies; mobile devices, cloud computing, augmented reality and wearable technologies, multilevel customer interaction and profiling, big data analytics and advanced algorithms, smart sensors, 3D printing, authentication and fraud detection, advanced human-machine interfaces, Internet of Things platforms, blockchains, drones, robots, and location-detection technologies.

Added to this list are: Artificial Intelligence, autonomous vehicles, cyber threats, advanced sensor technologies, space and satellite developments including micro, nano and cube sats, and satellite constellations of dozens or hundreds of satellites functioning together in pre-designed synchronisation. Spatial technologies will operate in tandem with most of these technologies to offer substantial value adding and new applications, many of which are not yet realised.

You can download the “Global Outlook 2018: Spatial Information Industry” report from the CRCSI website.

MGA Conference Melbourne

RMIT University, the CRCSI and Geoscience Australia are co-hosting the 10th Multi-GNSS Asia (MGA) Conference from 23 – 25 October in Melbourne, Australia.


MGA2018 story RMIT Storey HallBe a part of this free two-and-a-half-day conference with a generous spread of updates from Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) signal providers, sessions on industry applications, facilitated networking, open forums to discuss future collaborations, and young professional and student events.

GNSS and positioning technologies are the tools that enable the rest of the geospatial industry. The growing demand for location-based information, the proliferation of mobile devices and the novel ways GNSS and positioning are being used in agriculture, aviation and intelligent transport systems are ensuring the continued growth of the sector.

MGA Melbourne will showcase several topics including highlights from the Australian and New Zealand Satellite Based Augmentation (SBAS) test-bed, the role of GNSS in improving our road, rail, aerial and marine transport, as well as the growing demand for precise positioning services for our surveying, agriculture, utilities, emergency services, resources, construction and smart cities sectors. 

We know the spatial sector adds significant value to the Australian economy, in fact, it has been singled out as a key industry growth sector. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to hear from and network with local and international, businesses, government representatives and researchers.

Jump online to find out more and sign up for updates and be the first to know when registrations open!

GeoSmart Asia and Locate18

The biggest event on the geospatial calendar has taken place in Adelaide. It was great to stretch our legs, get out of the office and connect with our far-reaching spatial family and friends.

Graeme Kernich, Alex Leith, Stephanie Pradier, Lesley Arnold, Julia MitchellGraeme Kernich, Julia Mitchell, Alex Leith, Stephanie Pradier and Lesley Arnold all had slots in the impressive program. Graeme kicked it all off after lunch on day two by giving details of FrontierSI and on day three he launched the latest Global Outlook report. Lesley highlighted that on-demand knowledge will be the next economy, using the cadastre as a case study to link spatial data infrastructures with the spatial knowledge infrastructures. Stephanie spoke at a special edition of Georabble, alongside other women in spatial, discussing topics of inclusion, women in STEM and disruptive technologies. Alex wowed the crowd when he presented CRCSI work on how our Greening the Greyfields project is enabling greater sustainability, liveability and economic outcomes for landowners and surrounding communities. Last, but not least, Julia gave an update on the SBAS test-bed, fielding several questions, including specific interest in the benefits from the SBAS signal.

CRCSI winners at Locate18

But the real fun was at the conference dinner, doubling as the APSEA Gala night where three of the CRCSI team were recognised for their dedication to the spatial industry. Dr Peter Woodgate and Dr Zaffar Mohammad-Ghouse were both honoured for their service to SSSI, becoming Fellows. And Phil Delaney became the youngest recipient of the Spatial Industry Business Association Chairman’s Award. Phil took the opportunity to remind everyone in the room that “young professionals can and should play a large role in pushing boundaries to create the businesses and organisations we want to work for and run in the future”.

A big congratulations to all three. 

Accolades for our PhD student Yongchao Wang

Qld QUT Yongchao WangA big congrats go to Dr Yongchao Wang, QUT, who received an Outstanding Doctoral Thesis Award from QUT for his recently accepted thesis, "Geometry-free analysis approaches for noise and hardware biases in triple-frequency GNSS signals". His research addresses some fundamental problems in Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) data processing, with a focus on triple frequency signals. It proposes a geometry-free approach to hardware biases estimation and measurement noise analysis. Yongchao’s research has resulted in an overall improvement to GNSS positioning accuracy of 10 per cent. His thesis is currently under embargo until 7 March 2019, but you can find out more and read the full abstract here.

Satellite technology improving safety and efficiency in our skies

First published on the Geoscience Australia website.

Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, Matt Canavan, joined Geoscience Australia, the CRCSI, Airservices Australia and other guests at Canberra Airport on 16 April to discuss how air transport in remote and regional Australia is set to be transformed by SBAS.

Air transport in remote and regional Australia is set to be transformed by a new satellite positioning technology currently being trialled by Geoscience Australia. The aviation trial is one of 25 currently being run across the country. Airservices Australia is leading the Satellite-Based Augmentation System (SBAS) project on behalf of the aviation industry, fitting SBAS technology into aircraft and testing it across regional Australia.

Canberra airport shot SBAS story

Photo courtesy of Geoscience Australia

Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, Matt Canavan, Geoscience Australia CEO James Johnson, and Airservices Australia CEO Jason Harfield, hosted an event at Canberra International Airport on 16 April to demonstrate the technology to representatives from the aviation industry and media.The event provided an opportunity for pilots to talk about how the technology would help Australian aviation. Aircraft present at the event included the Toll Air Ambulance, used for patient rescue, retrieval and treatment, in communities in New South Wales and the ACT, and a plane used by the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

The aviation component of the trial will test two technologies: first and second generation SBAS. An operational SBAS would improve safety, by guiding pilots with greater accuracy, especially those flying into regional aerodromes operating under Instrument Flight Rules (IFR). SBAS technology provides accurate guidance for landing procedures at regional aerodromes where ground infrastructure may not be as advanced as that used at larger airports.

Geoscience Australia's SBAS project manager Dr John Dawson explained that SBAS-assisted aircraft approaches are eight times safer than those that use ground-based navigation aids.

"This could mean a pilot can now attempt a landing without visuals down to 200 feet," Dr Dawson said.

"The safety and efficiency benefits this technology provides will result in fewer flights being cancelled or diverted, and can also reduce the number of landing attempts flights may need to make during poor weather."

This will be of particular benefit to services like the Royal Flying Doctor Service, which provides emergency medical transport and primary health care to rural and remote Australia, and often needs to undertake landings in varying weather conditions and at small, remote airfields and other locations where infrastructure and technology is limited.

Airservices Australia will receive up to $310 000 in funding from the Australian and New Zealand governments to trial the technology.

The broader two-year SBAS trial program includes projects in the agriculture, construction, consumer and utilities, resources, spatial and transport industries. It is being funded with $12 million from the Australian Government and a further $2 million from the New Zealand Government.

Geoscience Australia and LINZ are working closely with the Cooperative Research Centre for Spatial Information (CRCSI) on the project. The CRCSI is overseeing the evaluation of the effectiveness of an SBAS for the region, and building expertise within government and industry on its transformative benefits.

The CRCSI has called for organisations from across the aviation, road, rail, maritime, spatial, construction, mining, utilities and agriculture sectors to participate in the test-bed. Information is available via the CRCSI website. To keep informed of the progress of the SBAS test-bed project, sign up to the NPI Capability newsletter.

Read the joint media release from Matthew Canavan and the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, the Hon Michael Mccormack MP here.