Chinese Seek Satellite Independence With BDS
When the Department of Defense allowed private companies and people to access data from GPS satellites orbiting the Earth the end result was progression. Think about it for a second. Fitness watches, navigation devices, tracking systems and a million different apps for smart phones all use some component of locational technology based on GPS. None of these technologies would even be possible if the government wanted to keep their satellite controlled locational technology to themselves for military and surveillance applications. GPS has opened up an entirely new world for society and eliminated the days when people would write down directions with a pen and paper. Unfortunately, some countries can’t handle being second fiddle to the innovative genius of the United States. This is part of the reason why our “friends” over in China have made nearly a trillion dollar investment into the creation of a new navigation and tracking satellite system called Beidou (BDS) that the Chinese hope will rival GPS. According to information gathered from China Daily, the Chinese government is hoping Beidou will increase the countries’ emerging navigational service sector while also making China far less reliant on foreign satellite technologies. With escalating tensions on the Korean Peninsula and China quickly rising to the top as a world super power, this new satellite plan would protect the country if for some reason the United States chose to deny the Chinese access to GPS tracking and navigational technologies. In fact, some groups such as DefensePolicy.org actually believe Beidou will give the Chinese a strategic advantage if any form of hostilities broke out in the east by giving the country the ability to more accurately combat advanced ground and naval forces such as those of elite military nations like the United States.
Commercial Applications of Beidou
The group behind the development of the Beidou system believe that the new satellite technology will open up more doors in the commercial market which could be especially helpful considering the growth increase for the country. With a more accessible satellite guided navigational and tracking technology, limos, taxis and other transportation vehicles will have the capability to instantly locate passengers. This will not only improve business fleet management efficiency, but also significantly reduce fuel consumption while reducing emissions. This would be a huge benefit considering the well documented pollution issues associated with Chinese vehicles and manufacturing facilities known to have some of the worst emission problems in the world. The network of 35 satellites that will make up the Beidou system are expected to have total global coverage by the year 2020, providing precise positioning, tracking and navigation. Currently, the Chinese have launched a little under half (16) satellites dedicated to navigation.
Applications Of Beidou System
Military transport Weather forecast Navigation Vehicle Tracking Commercial fishing, telecommunications Hydrological monitoring Mapping & routing
Naturally, the Beidou system will feature a number of functions that will calculate timing, altitude, navigation, position and more, but the terminals will also feature the ability to share information with stations on the ground via short message. This is significant because if things play out in the way the Chinese government hopes it will allow the Beidou system to steal upwards of 75% of market share currently owned by GPS systems. The relationship between the United States and China is cross-beneficial, as the Chinese hold more American currency than any other nation and we purchase all of their cheaply manufactured goods created through essentially slave labor to full our Wal-Marts.