9 November 2017

Industry trial of Australian Satellite-Based Augmentation System officially launched

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The Australian Government today launched a trial of Satellite-Based Augmentation System (SBAS) for the Australasian region at an event at CQUniversity Australia’s Rockhampton campus.

The launch was attended by the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, Senator Matt Canavan, who said CQUniversity Australia is leading one of over 30 projects that will test how industries in Australia and New Zealand can benefit from improved satellite positioning technology.

“Using first generation SBAS technology, the CQUniversity-led project is testing the construction of virtual fencing for strip grazing, and looking at how the precise tracking of livestock can be used for early disease detection and more efficient breeding programs,” Minister Canavan said.

The two-year trial is being funded with $12 million from the Australian Government and a further $2 million from the New Zealand Government. It is being managed by Geoscience Australia and Land Information New Zealand, in partnership with the global technology companies GMV, Inmarsat and Lockheed Martin. The Australia and New Zealand Cooperative Research Centre for Spatial Information (CRCSI) is managing the industry projects which will demonstrate the benefits and applications of improved positioning capability.

The SBAS test-bed project will improve access to accurate positioning information

The SBAS test-bed project will improve access to accurate positioning information anytime and anywhere across Australia and NZ. Credit: Inmarsat-4 Image courtesy of Inmarsat plc

Chief Executive Officer Dr James Johnson said Geoscience Australia was excited to be leading a trial that is working with 10 industry sectors to test three new satellite positioning technologies, including the world-first second generation SBAS and Precise Point Positioning.

"This trial exemplifies the benefits of government working closing with industry to translate the latest in satellite positioning technology into real-world applications. It’s all about government innovation supporting and driving entrepreneurship within industry,” Dr Johnson said.

The CRCSI’s SBAS Program Manager, Julia Mitchell said to date 11 contracts have been signed with participants from a range of industry sectors across Australia and New Zealand, including agriculture, resources, transport, construction, utility and spatial.

It is great to see interest from a range of sectors, with the projects chosen demonstrating a wide range of uses from the livestock tracking demonstrated by CQUniversity today, to community safety applications, and testing driverless and connected cars. “It really highlights how location technology and spatial information underpins our modern economy,” Julia said.

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