Commercially available network RTK is changing the way precision positioning is done around the world. Businesses that once considered RTK to be economically out of reach, now tap into network RTK correction streams every day. With no investment in field base stations, software or steep learning curves, subscribers can tap into real-time data corrections that enable them to take on projects that are simply not possible without RTK. Based on Trimble VRSThe most ubiquitous and trusted network RTK system around the world is Trimble VRS. Today, there are 80 Trimble VRS networks throughout the world and that number is increasing daily. Not surprisingly, Trimble VRS is also the system employed by Ordnance Survey, owner and operator of the country-wide network in Great Britain that provides raw data for Trimble VRS Now. In effect, the new subscription service is providing small, private organizations the same industrial-strength positioning solution as the largest mapping agency in the United Kingdom.Commercial networks are expanding quickly and have reached diverse markets around the globe. eGPS in the U.S. covers over 77,770 kmÂ² (30,000 milesÂ²) in the state of Georgia. CanNet in Canada has 48 stations across the country with 13 in the high-use region of Southern Ontario. Well established in Europe, numerous network providers have already been in operation for several years.Experts suggest that subscription services are growing at about 25 percent per year and are fundamentally changing the way positioning work will be done in the future. Customer requirements for accuracy will continue to increase as timelines and budgets decrease. In many markets, staying competitive will require access to network RTK corrections. The efficiency-minded simplicity of network RTK and the low overhead of subscription services make subscription-based RTK a smart business decision for a wide range of users.Connect. Correct. Measure.How can a subscription-RTK system aide a surveyor's business? It's as easy as 1-2-3. First the rover connects with the system for authentication and to report an approximate field position. Next, the system sends a correction tailored for the rover's position. The correction is modeled using data captured at neighboring reference stations up to 50 km (31 miles) away or more, depending on the ionospheric activity of the region. With corrections received, the user can measure in real time with centimeter-accuracy.Check with your local Trimble dealer to see if a subscription RTK service is coming to your area.
Author: Susanne Preiser
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