26 August 2008

Navigation and Timing on the Moon

NASA lunar programme is speeding up. The US space agency issued a Request for Information (RFI) to "solicit ideas from private companies in providing communications and navigation services that would support the development of exploration, scientific and commercial capabilities on the moon over the next 25 years. NASA plans to establish science stations on the lunar surface beginning as early as 2013, followed by the return of humans to the moon and establishment of the first lunar outpost in 2020. Communications, networking and navigation capabilities required to support these efforts will be provided by NASA, other national space agencies, private industry or some combination thereof."

The NASA interest in Navigation, Positioning and Timing is a good example of how crucial these technologies are becoming. Navigation and Timing are part of the "infrastructure" of many hi-tech applications. Nowadays navigation services are ubiquitous on Earth, tomorrow even on the Moon..