China’s GPS – ‘Beidou’ to be operational from 2012

China successfully launched an orbiter into space from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in south-western Sichuan province. It was the third orbiter launched for the country’s independent satellite navigation network known as Beidou, or Compass system, Xinhua news agency said.

The network which will eventually have a total of 35 satellites, capable of providing global navigation service to users around the world around 2020.

The Beidou system will provide navigation, time signal and short message services in Asian and Pacific region beginning in 2012, the agency reported.

The COMPASS system will provide both open and authorized services, according to China’s satellite navigation project center.

The open service will be free of charge for the system’s users in the service area, at a resolution of 10 metres for positioning, an accuracy of 10 nanoseconds for time signal and accuracy of 0.2 meter per second for speed measurement, the report said.

The authorized service will provide more accurate services for subscribers.

Source: Earthtimes.

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