Definition

GLONASS (Globalnaya Navigatsionnay Sputnikovaya Sistema)

GLONASS (for Globalnaya Navigatsionnay Sputnikovaya Sistema), the Russian Federation's Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS), is the Russian version of a global positioning system. Similar to the United States' Global Positioning System (GPS), GLONASS is owned and operated by the military. GLONASS provides two separate levels of precision: deliberately degraded (for security purposes) signals for civilian users offer accuracy to within 100 meters, while its signals for military users offer accuracy of 10-20 meters.

GLONASS was designed to operate a system of 24 satellites (21 operational, and three spares for failover redundancy) orbiting at a height of 19,140 kilometers in three circular planes, at an inclination of 64.8 degrees relevant to the equatorial plane. However, because of a lack of maintenance funding, fewer than half of the GLONASS satellites are likely to be in operation at any given time.

Also see Galileo.

This was last updated in September 2005
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

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