FAA selects NovAtel to update WAAS support

January 07, 2019
Written by Wings Staff
NovAtel of Calgary, Alberta, won a contract from the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to design, produce and deliver 40 next-generation Ground Uplink Station (GUS) Signal Generators to support the FAA’s safety of life WAAS navigation service. The contract also includes ongoing engineering support services for NovAtel’s portfolio of Satellite Based Augmentation System (SBAS) products deployed by the FAA, including the WAAS G-III reference receiver platform.

The FAA has leveraged NovAtel’s SBAS technology for more than 20 years starting with NovAtel's first-generation WAAS reference receiver that was created in the 1990s.

Developed by the FAA, the WAAS network is a safety-critical navigation aid that allows aircraft to use the US Global Positioning System (GPS) for all phases of flight. Every time an aircraft takes off or lands within the WAAS coverage area, NovAtel technology is generating and processing data that allows aviators to make precision approaches to any airport.

Since the program’s inception, NovAtel has provided the FAA with technology that delivers high-precision GPS receiver measurements and navigation information from WAAS Reference Stations (WRS) and the GUS infrastructure.

Under this new contract, NovAtel will help modernize the WAAS network by upgrading and extending support for the network’s GUS infrastructure. The next-generation of GUS Signal Generators, which are designed specifically for SBAS ground uplink systems, will include independent L1 and L5 signal paths to precisely control the frequency and phase of L1 and L5 code and carrier for dual-frequency SBAS. A GUS receiver system based on the WAAS G-III receiver platform will also be released along with the Signal Generator to complete the modernized GUS control loop.

“We have a long history with the FAA and have worked very closely with the WAAS program team to develop multiple-generations of SBAS infrastructure,” said Jonathan Auld, VP of engineering and safety critical systems at NovAtel. “NovAtel remains committed to supporting the FAA and their safety of life WAAS service and we are excited to deliver this critical next-generation technology for SBAS modernization.”

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