The EU-funded 'GSC' project is working to unlock the potential of GNSS service infrastructure across Europe, assessing the likely contribution of GNSS in general and EGNOS and Galileo in particular to mass market 'Intelligent Transport Systems'.
GSC (GNSS-enabled Services Convergence) will test EGNOS and EDAS in several countries across Europe, explains Eva Schelin, GSC project Steering Committee Vice Chair. The project will assess GNSS signal reception and its impact on basic positioning service capabilities, and it will look at the performance of commercial, 'off-the-shelf' GNSS receivers in terms of multi-signal positioning.
The GSC project was launched in March 2009 and will run for about two years. At a recent GSC workshop in Brussels, European GNSS Agency (GSA) Market Development Officer Fiammetta Diani said, "The GNSS market is growing, as is the need for better road infrastructure. EGNOS is a key stepping stone, as it offers integrity of signal and increased accuracy."
GNSS for ITS
Intelligent Transport Systems and Services represent a considerable market for GNSS-enabled applications. GSC project partners say now is the time to work towards the technical conditions that reflect real business needs.
"We want to enable an open and competitive mass market for tolling and other GNSS-enabled services using Galileo and EGNOS," says Schelin. "The ultimate aim is to promote the openness, interoperability and co-operativeness of Global Navigation Satellite Systems and, by doing so, to fully leverage and exploit the value of Galileo and EGNOS."
The objectives of the workshop included fostering a discussion among participants on how to tackle GNSS service convergence. Shelin says the number of comments, remarks, and questions raised demonstrated a high level of interest in the work being carried out under the GSC project.
Over the next few months, GSC partners will work to identify the key differentiators of Galileo and EGNOS for a number of potential mass market applications, including interoperable road charging applications, and will demonstrate how these differentiators could become enablers for industrialised mass market implementation.
The project will also identify how standardisation and certification mechanisms can provide the basis for the necessary trust-relationship between different business entities in a horizontal mass market. The project will show how such a standardised open GNSS-enabled platform can be operated by service aggregators running third-party services in combination with mission-critical services such as road charging.
For now, says Shelin, the next steps include the setting up of field trails. All of the results will be presented at a final GSC workshop on 12 and 13 April 2011 in Malmö, Sweden.