Topcon awarded world's first GNSS technology contract

News Topcon November 16, 2006
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Topcon Positioning Systems (TPS) has been awarded the world's first government GNSS contract designed to harness signals from all current and planned positioning satellite systems--GPS, GLONASS and Galileo (G3).

The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) will begin using the world's first satellite reference network, which will utilize more than 40 satellites currently in operation. The total available satellite signals available for use will exceed 80 when all the Galileo satellites are in service, and system upgrades and additions to the GPS and GLONASS systems are completed.

The state's Department of General Services recently awarded TPS and Hayes Instrument Co. Inc., of Shelbyville, Tenn., a contract for the world's first G3-enabled GPS reference network. The network will incorporate Topcon Net-G3 GNSS reference station receivers with G3-A1 GNSS antennas.

The Tennessee bid specified that receivers "have the ability to receive U.S. GPS system of satellites, the Russian GLONASS system of satellites and the future European Galileo system of satellites, or shall be upgraded at no charge to the state when the manufacturer's equipment is capable of receiving the additional satellite signals from the GLONASS system and the Galileo system."

Topcon G3 technology provides this capability.

"This contract marks the turning of a page in the precision positioning industry," Ray O'Connor, TPS president and CEO, said. "The Tennessee Department of Transportation is not only looking at maximizing productivity on projects in the short-term, but planning for the future by including the use of every available satellite now and in the foreseeable future on jobsites.

"The department clearly understands the powerful impact that having access to all available satellites can have in guaranteeing increased accuracy and productivity on state transportation improvement projects," he said.

"This contract shows great vision by TDOT to look at a reference network as an enterprise solution for all state government by including hardware and software for reference stations, survey grade GPS solutions, mapping grade GIS solutions, in addition to training and maintenance on all products," O'Connor said. "The bid specifications were very clear: TDOT is looking to the future and Topcon is proud to be not only a supplier but also a partner."

"The state did extensive research and testing to make sure they would acquire the best system available today and in the future," Eddie Clanton, president and CEO of Hayes Instrument Co., said. "After three years of in-depth research, the state of Tennessee awarded the bid based on the extreme value of the equipment and the industry-leading technology."

Also included in the winning bid are Topcon GPS rovers, GPS base stations, GMS-2 GIS receivers, Topcon Tools software and TopNET Network software.

The government contract includes training of state employees by Topcon personnel at onsite locations, plus annual maintenance contracts on all hardware and software. Topcon also will provide three days of onsite assistance for each reference station installation.

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