9/30/2016: Recap of the 56th Meeting of the Civil GPS Service Interface Committee

The 56th Meeting of the Civil GPS Service Interface Committee (CGSIC), was held September 12-13, 2016, at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon, in conjunction with the Institute Of Navigation’s Global Navigation Satellite System conference. For readers who were unable to attend, Maritime Commons is providing the below synopsis of the meeting and presentations that took place.

Written by Chief Warrant Officer Rebecca Ruch

The Meeting of the CGSIC is an annual meeting that takes place to ensure effective information exchange between civil GPS users and U.S. GPS authorities.

Subcommittees of the CGSIC for Timing, State and Local Government, International Information, and Survey, Mapping and Geosciences held their meetings on the first day of this year’s meeting. Summaries of these meetings were presented to the CGSIC Plenary Session by the Subcommittee Chairs the following day.

Each subcommittee focuses on a specific GPS user group and contained a variety of interesting applications. A presentation was given detailing impacts to the international telecom user industry from the GPS universal coordinated time (UTC) offset anomaly affecting the GPS ground control system in late January of this year. Briefings including GPS forensics and time synchronization in the electric power grid highlighted research and new uses of GPS that provide efficiencies and economic benefit the world.

The keynote speaker for this year’s CGSIC Plenary session was Brigadier General Mark Baird, vice commander of the Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles Air Force Base. Baird spoke about the importance of positioning, navigation, and timing (PNT) as one of our nation’s most, if not the most, important mission to our national security. Noting integration of GPS in to every aspect of our everyday lives, he observed that the free, open, and reliable nature of this service has led to the development of hundreds of applications affecting numerous aspects of modern life. He also spoke of the proliferation of space technology, the increasingly contested, congested, and competitive nature of the space domain and budget constraints that are encouraging us to review our existing space architectures and identify what we need to change in order to improve resiliency, flexibility, and affordability.

Other presentations in the Plenary session focused on the operational status and modernization of the GPS constellation and ground control system, U.S. PNT policy, GPS augmentation systems, information related to U.S. engagement with other international Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) as well as a variety of topics related to the status and progress of ongoing GPS programs in the U.S. government.

To learn more about the variety of briefings conducted at this meeting of the CGSIC you can find the2016 agenda and all presentations posted on the GPS.gov website. CGSIC meetings are free and open to the public. The Coast Guard conducts these meetings to provide official updates from GPS program officials and to highlight the broad array of GPS-based applications that are available

If you have suggestions for the next CGSIC agenda, would like to present a topic, or if you found information from past meetings useful and would like to hear more, please contact us via our Navigation Center “contact us” form. Please be sure to select “Civil GPS Service Interface Committee (CGSIC)” from the pull-down menu.

If you haven’t visited the NAVCEN website recently, consider viewing the NAVCEN overview brief recently added on the bottom of the homepage to learn more about how NAVCEN can support your operations. The website hosts a substantial amount of navigation-related information. If you are unable to find what you’re looking for, please submit an inquiry.

Finally, GPS-related inquiries or reports of signal interference or degradation problems can be made to the U.S. Coast Guard Navigation Center via our report a GPS problem page, or through our 24-hour watchstander at 703-313-5900.

This blog is not a replacement or substitute for the formal posting of regulations and updates or existing processes for receiving formal feedback of the same. Links provided on this blog will direct the reader to official source documents, such as the Federal Register, Homeport and the Code of Federal Regulations. These documents remain the official source for regulatory information published by the Coast Guard.

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