New GPS Service Free, More Accurate in Europe

by admin October 2, 2009 at 3:00 pm

The European Union introduced on Thursday a free global positioning system that it claims is almost five times more accurate than the U.S. system currently in use.

Called the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS), the system uses three satellites and a ground network of about 40 ground positioning stations and four control centers.

The U.S. military-run GPS system, in widespread use across the globe, offers a 10-meter (32 feet) accuracy level, but EGNOS promises to fine-tune this experience and deliver accuracy levels to around 2 meters (6 feet).

EGNOS only covers the 27 member-states of the EU at the moment, but it is expected to expand to neighbouring nations and Northern Africa in the near future. The service is free for use by anyone within the coverage area with a GPS/SBAS compatible receiver.

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