Galileo system tested in sailing route that Viking dragon-ships used 1200 years ago.
After Harald Bluetooth King of Denmark who inspired the famous wireless technology name, another piece of Vikings' history inspires our modern technology.
Ancient manuscripts record Viking navigators relied on ‘sunstones’ to find their way – archaeologists believe these may have been polarising crystals to pinpoint the Sun even in overcast skies.
Belgian frigate Leopold I-F930 instead , participating in the end-of-year 2013 trials, carried the most up-to-date equipment possible, with multiple Galileo receivers for both its public Open Service (OS) and secure Public Regulated Service (PRS).
The long-range, high-latitude testing spanned the North Sea, following the same historical sailing route that Viking dragon-ships used 1200 years ago.
The testing provided tangible in-situ evidence of Galileo signal stability across both its operating frequencies up at high latitudes, equalling low satellite elevations in the local sky.
Galileo is a global navigation satellite system (GNSS) currently being built by the European Union (EU) and European Space Agency (ESA). The € 5 billion project is named after the Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei. One of the aims of Galileo is to provide a high-precision positioning system upon which European nations can rely, independently from the Russian GLONASS, US GPS, and Chinese Compass systems, which can be disabled in times of war or conflict.
In operation Galileo will use two ground operations centres, near Munich in Germany and in Fucino in Italy. In December 2010 EU ministers in Brussels voted Prague in the Czech Republic as the headquarters of the Galileo project.
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