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The first of four satellite dishes in the Southern Positioning Augmentation Network (SouthPAN) is now in place.

SouthPAN’s first satellite dish at Uralla in New South Wales was officially opened on 1 December. 

This timelapse video shows the construction process, which was led by Lockheed Martin Australia and AvComm.

The official opening of SouthPAN’s first dish represents a significant milestone towards more reliable, more accurate positioning services across Australia and New Zealand.

Early Open Services are available using existing infrastructure but this is the network’s first purpose-built satellite dish.

Construction of New Zealand’s first ground control centre, including two satellite dishes, is currently underway at Awarua, near Invercargill.

SouthPAN is a partnership between Toitū Te Whenua Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) and Geoscience Australia.

SouthPAN will enhance satellite positioning services and improve the accuracy and reliability of existing global navigation satellite systems like GPS.

Using a network of ground reference stations, uplink centres and satellite payloads, SouthPAN will compare satellite data against precisely measured positions to identify and correct discrepancies.

Accuracy of positioning data will improve from the current 5 to 10 metres to as little as 10 centimetres.

SouthPAN will be fully operational by 2028 when it will achieve Safety of Life certification. This will allow aircraft to use SouthPAN services for navigation and landing.

Combined with other technologies the network will support innovation benefitting many sectors and industries including transport, agriculture, construction, forestry and horticulture. 

Read more about SouthPAN.

More information about the Uralla opening is available on the Geoscience Australia website: New satellite dish puts Australia in prime position.

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