South Korea’s KT Signs Agreement With Swift Navigation
South Korean location market potentially worth billions...
South Korea’s KT Corp. [KT] has signed an agreement with San Francisco-based Swift Navigation that provides an ultra-precision location data service for the country’s largest telecom, according to published reports.
The service, which aims to reduce GPS signal error to centimeters, is tailored to smartphones, autonomous vehicles, unmanned equipment, drones and flying taxis.
KT has installed reference stations nationwide, to include on Jeju Island. It plans to offer precise positioning services in several mobility markets by linking Swift Navigation’s GNSS solutions with its extensive network of reference stations.
South Korea is getting into satellite navigation in a big way. While South Korea’s Korean Positioning System (KPS) has been planned for years, recent press and government announcements signal that the local satellite navigation constellation will soon be a reality.
The KPS project, estimated to cost anywhere from $3.1 to $3.5 billion, proposes to launch its first navigation satellite in 2027. By 2035, there may be as many as seven or eight satellites in orbit.
Airspace Link Gains $23.1 Million in Funding, Completes 10-day Flight Operation
Detroit-based drone safety infrastructure provider Airspace Link has announced a Series B investment of $23.1 million.
The investment was led by Avanta Ventures in California. Other investors include Morningside, Caprock, Altos Ventures, Indicator Ventures, 2048 Ventures, Detroit Venture Partners, and Thales Group.
Founded in 2018 in Detroit, Airspace Link has grown to 50 employees and has raised a total of $37 million.
The company says it wants to expand with several initiatives:
Delivering safe, performant, and neutral Supplemental Data Service Provider (SDSP) and UAS Service Supplier (USS) capabilities to enable the acceleration of UAS Traffic Management (UTM) ecosystems.
Partnering with and supporting drone manufacturers, operators, software, and service providers.
Expanding services globally, with partners like Thales Group and Esri, to support current customers’ expansion and new market development.
Expanding Airspace Link’s FAA public-private partnership, through programs such as LAANC USS, BEYOND, Remote ID, and more initiatives in the U.S.
Continuing to partner with state and local governments to drive investment supporting drone infrastructure, enabling them to unlock economic, environmental, and social equity objectives delivered through advanced aerial mobility.
“In addition to the points laid out in our release, this funding gives us the ability to meet the rapidly growing demand we’re seeing in the UAS industry for our products and services,” said Michael Healander, Airspace Link CEO and co-founder. “As the industry moves toward advanced operations at scale, our GIS-based data and digital safety infrastructure are critical in the planning, execution, and analysis processes for our partners. In addition to the US market demand, we’re well equipped to expand globally with strategic partnerships in place with Thales and Esri.”
In other company news, Airspace Link recently completed a 10-day flight operation testing a real-world drone transportation program to move medical items in Michigan. The company, through a Michigan Mobility Funding Grant, teamed with drone operator MissionGO, Beaumont Health, and metropolitan Detroit community leaders to execute package delivery via UAS.
Globalstar Launches Asset Tracking Hardware and Software Products
Globalstar [GSAT] has introduced Realm Enablement Suite, which include satellite asset tracking hardware and software solutions. The company says the suite will enable its partners to place new solutions on the market with AI-enable applications that generate telematics data.
Realm Enablement Suite, which uses the Globalstar LEO satellite network, introduces Integrity 150, a solar-powered, deployment-ready satellite asset tracking device with an application enablement platform, the company said. Also introduced is the ST150M satellite modem module, which includes a GPS receiver, that spurs product development; and Realm application enablement platform, the company said.
The solar-powered asset tracking device, which has an integrated GPS receiver, will be tailored to the transportation, energy, construction, agriculture, forestry and government agency markets. The device features what the company calls the longest life battery available.
The realm enablement application platform includes the Globalstar BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) sensors libraries. The platform also provides an ongoing applications development ecosystem as innovative solutions are added by the company.
Contact: Denise Davila, Globalstar, (985) 335-1538, email@example.com, www.globalstar.com.
NextBillion.ai and GeoJunxion Partner
NextBillion.ai and GeoJunxion [AS] have partnered to provide a mapping solution for routing deliveries in Low Emission Zone (LEZ) areas in Europe. The companies say that delivery companies pay hundreds of thousands of euros per year in penalties and fees for delivering goods in or driving non-conforming vehicles through LEZ.
The two location-tech companies say they will deliver the first logistics optimization and routing platform tailored to the European LEZ to logistics software developers. However, the companies also say that the co-branded solutions is only available for LEZ-compliant vehicles.
For LEZ-focused routing and optimization APIs, NextBillion.ai is providing both the optimizer to assign adequate orders to vehicles that meet the LEZ emissions standard and the Road Editor tool to prevent vehicles that fail to meet the standard from entering the zone, the company said.
NextBillion.ai’s Navigation SDK and app use custom features to provide turn-by-turn guidance to drivers, the company said. For its part, GeoJunxion said it is using its existing database of over 2,500 Low Emission Zones and Restricted Traffic Areas.
Contact: GeoJunxion, 31 (0)10 885 1200, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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🚀 Thales Alenia Aerospace Signs With EUSPA to Develop the Next Version of EGNOS. “Thales Alenia Space, joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), has signed a new contract with the EU Agency for the Space Program (EUSPA) to develop, qualify and deploy the new European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS) version.”
☹ Tesla Lays off Nearly 200 Autopilot Workers, Shutters San Mateo Office. “Tesla has gutted the data annotation team working on Autopilot, laying off nearly 200 employees and shutting down the San Mateo, Calif., office where they worked.”
🙂 Velodyne Lidar Signs Multi-Year Agreement with Boston Dynamics. “Boston Dynamics selected Velodyne Lidar’s sensors to provide perception and navigation capabilities for its highly mobile robots.”
👌 Mapbox Globe View for Web and Mobile. The company rolled out Mapbox Globe view that allows customers to “tell stories that span continents, from planning a holiday, to tracking shipments, to visualizing data like never before,” according to a company blog.
😮 Replacing Google Maps With Waze on Android Auto Could Soon Become the Only Option. “Unfortunately for those who rely on Google Maps for their navigation experience, switching to Waze could soon become the only option.
👍 Google Maps Rival Announces a New Big Update for Its Android and iPhone Navigation Apps. “[Sygic] updated its mobile applications with quite a big change: three of its most advanced features are being moved under the same roof, becoming a part of a newly-created module.”
💰 Airspace Link's Drone Tracking Platform Gathers Government Customers Before Going Global.
🚘 Cruise Is Now Charging for Rides in Its Driverless Vehicles in San Francisco. “The company said that fared driverless rides are currently taking place with “most riders” in the Northwest section of San Francisco.”
🛩 Industrial Plants Are Inspected by Skypersonic Drone Piloted From Across the Atlantic Ocean. “Red Cat Holdings [RCAT] visually inspected the interior of a fully operational utility plant in Turin, Italy, using a drone controlled from Orlando, Fla., 4,800 miles away.”
🤞 Waymo's Self-driving Trucks Will Deliver Home Goods for Wayfair. “The deliveries will take place as part of a pilot that’s being conducted by Waymo and JB Hunt Transport Services to test out self-driving trucks along certain shipping routes in Texas.”
🚚 Waymo, UPS, Others Pressure Newsom To Allow Autonomous Trucking in California. “Waymo, Aurora, UPS and Luminar are among a group of 34 autonomous vehicle developers, California business organizations, and automotive and logistics companies that have signed an open letter to Gov. Gavin Newsom asking him to revisit the California Department of Motor Vehicles’s 2015 prohibition on the operation of autonomous trucks in the state.”
😧 CalAmp Shares Slide After Q1 Results Miss Estimates, Revenue Dips19 Percent.
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NextNav Integrates TerraPoiNT Into GCT’s Chipset
NextNav [NN] has integrated its TerraPoiNT advanced location technology into GCT's LTE chipset. GCT, which designs and supplies 4G and 5G solutions, will offer 3D GPS performance into its GDM7243i chip.
NextNav says the integration enables TerraPoiNT capability to be brought into such mass market applications such timing for critical infrastructure, position/navigation for cars, IoT, and drone/eVTOL markets in GPS-challenged environments.
In other company news, NextNav and MetCom have signed a commercial agreement to scale Pinnacle in Japan for the nationwide deployment of 3D geolocation services. MetCom will start commercial operation in October 2022 following the successful pilot in Tokyo this past year, the company said.
Contact: NextNav, email@example.com, www.nextnav.com.
JCB Fastrac iCON Features Hexagon-NovAtel SMART7 GNSS Receiver
JCB’s new Fastrac iCON tractor features Hexagon-NovAtel’s SMART7 GNSS receiver and optional TerraStar Correction Services driving the iCONNECT precision technology package. The SMART7-I is a rugged, waterproof, all-in-one GNSS SMART Antenna designed and tested specifically for the agriculture industry, the company said.
The unit, which features Wi-Fi and Ethernet support, has TerraStar and RTK corrections for centimeter-level accuracy, the company said.
Contact: Jessica Fielding, Hexagon’s Autonomy & Positioning division, (403) 919-3388, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.novatel.com/agriculture.
HERE Offers Automakers Location-Based Products for NCAP Score
HERE Technologies has announced that it is providing automakers with help with New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) scores through a tailored set of location-based products. The New Car Assessment Programs are voluntary vehicle safety performance programs that rate the safety of new passenger vehicles sold in their regions, the company said.
HERE is now offering automakers a set of location-based products and solutions to reach higher NCAP scores, including HERE Navigation Map, HERE ISA Map, HERE ADAS Map, and dynamic services, the company said.
Contact: Adrianne Montgobert, HERE, 4915172116781, email@example.com, www.heretechnologies.com.
Septentrio Announces Receiver Compatibility With PX4 Autopilot
Septentrio has announced compatibility of their single and dual antenna AsteRx-m3 and mosaic receivers with PX4 Autopilot for RTK positioning for UAVs. PX4 Autopilot is one of the largest commercially adopted open-source navigation control stacks, the company said.
PX4 is supported by Septentrio’s GNSS boards and modules with both single antenna and dual antenna configurations, the company said. The Septentrio PX4 driver is available on GitHub.
Contact: Septentrio, www.septentrio.com.
Quectel Rolls Out GNSS Module With RTK and DR
Quectel Wireless Solutions has announced its dual-band multi-constellation GNSS module LC29H. The LC29H is available in several formats and optionally integrates RTK and DR, the company said.
The modules are suited for autonomous lawn mowers, drones, precision agriculture, micro-mobility scooters and delivery robots as well as other industrial and autonomous applications, the company said. The LC29H is available in four product variants each targeting different applications, the company said.
Contact: Quectel, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Silicon Labs Launches Module
Silicon Labs [SLAB] has launched a product that uses low-power Bluetooth devices to simplify Angle of Arrival (AoA) and Angle of Departure (AoD) location services. The new platform integrates Silicon Labs' BG22 SiP modules and SoCs, which can operate up to ten years on a coin cell battery, the company said.
The company said that Borda Technology adopted the new platform for its IoT for Healthcare products such as asset management, asset utilization, patient throughput management and patient flow, patient safety, and more through real-time location services (RTLS).
Contact: Silicon Labs, www.silabs.com.
PreAct Grabs Top Award
Beating out several competitors, PreAct Technologies’ T30P Flash Lidar was named 2022 Most Innovative Product of the Year for Automotive/Autonomous Technologies at Sensors Converge. PreAct Technologies’ T30P Flash Lidar is designed to be software-definable and integrate into a complete autonomous driving system stack for automakers, the company said.
However, it can also solve problems in trucking and robotics applications as well, the company said. The flash Lidar has sample rates up to 200 feet per second and integrates with a high-resolution RGB camera.
Contact: PreAct Technologies, www.preact-tech.com/technology/flash-lidar.
MERX Global Partners With E-SMART
Chicago-based MERX Global has partnered with E-SMART to integrate speed control technology to more than 250 trucks. E-SMART's real-time speed control decreases speeding events by more than 90 percent, the company said.
E-SMART uses advanced positioning technology to determine vehicle location to actively manage its maximum allowed speed, the company said. The technology also is used to prevent low bridge collision, provide active geofencing and remote vehicle immobilization, the company said.
Contact: Callie Myers, E-SMART, email@example.com.
EastBanc’s Transit IQ Predicts Bus Arrival Times
EastBanc Technologies AI-powered business intelligence platform for public transportation, TransitIQ, has achieved 91 percent accuracy predicting the arrival times of vehicles across 18,000 bus routes. TransitIQ is a business intelligence solution that uses GPS and cloud technology to provide a 360-degree view of public transit fleet performance, the company said.
Contact: Kelli Wheeler, for EastBanc Technologies, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rand McNally and Aramex Sign Connected Vehicle Platform Deal
Rand McNally has announced that Aramex [ARMX] has selected its connected vehicle platform, Rand Platform, to optimize the company’s fleet performance. The global logistics and delivery company is rolling out the solution to 11 locations in the Middle East and North Africa region, with plans to expand the program in coming months, the company said.
The deal with Aramex includes Rand McNally supplied hardware, a driver app and manager app, and a customized web portal from which managers can track vehicles and driver metrics. The Rand McNally Fleet platform offers vehicle and asset tracking, video telematics, navigation and routing, and compliance solutions, the company said.
Contact: Rand McNally, (800) 789-6277, email@example.com.
Sewio Announces MVP Program
Real-time location system vendor Sewio has announced a new MVP program to acknowledge outstanding members of the RTLS community. The program awards recipients with industry recognition in addition to benefits for both the individual and their companies. Founded in 2014, Sewio has more than 80 system integration partners and customers in 45 countries.
Contact: Sewio, www.sewio.net.
CDOT Approves Vueron’s Lidar-only Permits
The California Department of Motor Vehicles approved Vueron’s Lidar-only autonomous vehicle testing permits, the company announced. In recent tests, the company said it drove an autonomous vehicle 383 miles from Los Angeles to San Francisco via Interstate 5 and Interstate 580, for 6 hours at a maximum speed of 70mph.
Vueron has tested self-driving by using only one Lidar sensor and has verified its solution through its self-driving tests in a variety of roadway conditions and environments, the company said. Vueron only used one spinning Lidar sensor—and did not use cameras, radar, GPS, or HD map, the company said.
Contact: Vueron, www.vueron.org.
Hexagon AB has announced that Paolo Guglielmini will succeed Ola Rollén as President and CEO of the company, effective 31 December 2022. Michael Ritter, currently President of Hexagon’s Autonomy & Positioning division, will assume a new senior role overseeing the Autonomy & Positioning, Mining and Agriculture divisions, effective immediately. Maria Luthström, currently Head of Sustainability and Investor Relations for Hexagon, will succeed Ritter as President of Hexagon’s Autonomy & Positioning division, effective 1 October 2022.
ORBCOMM has announced that David Schmoock has joined the company as Chief Operating Officer, a new position reporting to CEO Marc Eisenberg. Schmoock was Dell’s President of North America Commercial Sales and Lenovo as President of the North America business.
HERE Technologies has named Adeel Manzoor as Chief Financial Officer. Manzoor joins HERE from C3 AI, where he served briefly as Chief Administrative Officer and CFO.
Septentrio has named Peter Fairhurst as new Vice President of Sales. Peter succeeds Neil Vancans, who is retiring at the end of June, and who has led Septentrio sales for the last 5 years. Fairhurst most recently was head of Product Strategy at ublox. Prior to that, he worked many years at Leica Geosystems, the company said.
TomTom [TOM2] has announced the appointment of Marili ’t Hooft-Bolle and Gemma Postlethwaite as new members of its Supervisory Board. The board now consists of Derk Haank, Jack de Kreij, Michael Rhodin, Hooft-Bolle and Postlethwaie.
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