Exact Navigation utilizing LEO Satellites







Dr. Tyler Reid, co-founder and CTO of Xona House Techniques, discusses a brand new kind of world navigation satellite tv for pc system (GNSS). Xona House Techniques plans to supply centimeter-level positioning accuracy and can serve the rising autonomous automobile group, the place exact navigation is essential. Reid discusses the benefits and technical challenges of a low Earth orbit (LEO) resolution.

Tyler Reid

Tyler Reid is co-founder and CTO of Xona House Techniques. Beforehand, Tyler labored as a Analysis Engineer on the Ford Motor Firm in localization and mapping for self-driving automobiles. He has additionally labored as an engineer at Google and as a lecturer at Stanford College, the place he co-taught the GPS course. Tyler obtained his PhD (2017) and MSc (2012) in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Stanford and B.Eng. (’10) in Mechanical Engineering from McGill.






lilly: Hiya and welcome to the Robohub podcast. Would you thoughts introducing your self?

Tyler: Hiya and thanks once more for having me on immediately. So I’m Tyler Reid and I’m co-founder and CTO of Xona House Techniques.

lilly: And may you inform us a bit of bit about Xona House Techniques?

Tyler: Yeah, for positive. So Xona House Techniques is an organization targeted on, principally constructing business GPS satellites.

So actually shifting away from the mannequin of, you understand, these type of authorities operated techniques like GPS which have a type of very particular, you understand, authorities oriented mission. Transferring in the direction of a system that’s, you understand, commercially pushed round type of wants of economic customers and, you understand, going extra in that route to kind of help these customers going ahead.

lilly: And what do you suppose are kind of the advantages of going business with a GPS kind know-how?

Tyler: Yeah, for positive. So to talk a bit of bit about my background and kind of the place a few of that is coming from. So, so I kind of got here from the world of, you understand, GPS and began actually in grad faculty on that facet of issues.

And transitioned after grad faculty to working in type of trade analysis. So I used to be working in autonomous autos, working with these techniques and type of seeing these techniques actually closely depend on, on GPS and type of what’s on the market immediately. And actually the cutting-edge of the know-how was, you understand, having third get together firms principally ship correction info for the GPS satellite tv for pc.

So the data coming from GPS immediately was actually not fairly on the stage that it should be to help these, you understand, techniques like self-driving which are actually making an attempt to get right down to the centimeter stage location to, to, you understand, drive themselves on the highway. and so to get to that stage, you had type of these firms whose entire type of position was to ship, you understand, higher orbit, higher clock info than what GPS provides you immediately to actually drive these errors right down to that type of that centimeter stage.

And due to the best way the system was architected, which actually wasn’t, you understand, meant for use this manner, it led to. you understand, the fragilities in that type of sign. So while you begin to drive beneath bushes or in sure environments, you’d typically lose that type of centimeter stage location. And it simply, it kind of left some, I assume, holes to be stuffed by, by one thing else.

And what that’s one thing else was was, was a part of my job to determine, okay. You already know, was it possibly terrestrial based mostly resolution? Is it laptop imaginative and prescient resolution is a type of the entire above. And, you understand, with my background coming from, you understand, satellite tv for pc navigation and GPS and type of seeing how these techniques have supported, you understand, some security, important functions like civil aviation, which is, you understand, a part of what my type of, the thesis work was in and type of interested by how that would evolve to help, you understand, a few of these floor techniques like autonomous autos, but additionally uAVs and, and type of different kind of,kind of autonomous techniques going ahead, that kind of actually led to this.

Okay, properly, how can we alter issues on the area facet reasonably than simply making an attempt to make use of what now we have from these type of authorities techniques to, to kind of, you understand, fill the gaps, I suppose. And so from a, from a business perspective, you understand, what are a number of the advantages that you just get there? Effectively, actually you’re not tied to type of the, the system that, that the federal government supplies for you, which, you understand, is type of static. It’s there for a purpose. And it, you understand, it’s actually a incredible system and it, it helps billions of customers. It has created type of all, you understand, all these use instances that we, you understand, I’ve, I’ve a horrible sense of route.

So, you understand, understanding type of the blue dot to seek out my method dwelling has, has been, you understand, extremely helpful. However, you understand, as we take into consideration shifting away from, you understand, people who can. use that info to kind of get near the place they should go after which type of end the job themselves and, and going in the direction of autonomous techniques that actually depend on that blue dot being, you understand, precisely proper the place it’s to, to, to actually get to that time kind of on their very own, with none enter from, from any people.

There actually is kind of that there’s kind of a leap that should occur there when it comes to, you understand, The sorts of ranges of, reliability and likewise, you understand, precision that, that these techniques help. And so interested by this from type of the business perspective, you understand, what are you able to present and, and changing into type of from an aerospace background, you understand, how will you, you understand, evolve this area section to actually be targeted on the, on the business facet.

And so. Among the advantages. There’s you, you simply, you understand, you could have type of a clean slate in a way. And so you can begin with, you understand, what do we actually have to help customers on the bottom? After which we will begin to architect the system, you understand, round a few of these, you understand, rising wants reasonably than, you understand, supporting issues from in many years, prior to now, I suppose.

lilly: And when it comes to like attending to that centimeter stage accuracy do you suppose that a lot of the technological developments are within the area facet or like, do you intend on doing does Xona area techniques plan on doing quite a lot of that error correction, like related error correction kind stuff and like the total stack?

Tyler: Yeah, that’s an important query. And I’ll say in some sense, we’re not inventing, we’re not reinventing the wheel. We’re kind of, you understand, we’re utilizing quite a lot of the strategies that’s been properly established by the kind of excessive precision GNSS trade, which has supported traditionally [00:05:00] issues like surveying issues like mapping, precision agriculture, you understand, are massive customers of, of this type of know-how.

And so actually type of constructing on the shoulders of giants in, in that respect. You already know, how, how are of us getting excessive precision immediately and type of, you understand, evolving that to kinda the following, the following type of, you understand, what may the following kind of, area infrastructure appear to be to, to make use of these strategies and type of make them even higher for people.

And so, you understand, while you take a look at the type of errors that stack up in GPS, you’ve obtained. The ambiance is an enormous one, you understand, as these indicators refract by way of the totally different layers of the ambiance, significantly the ionosphere and troposphere, you understand, that that’s a, an error that kind of manifests itself on the consumer stage, but additionally simply the orbit and clock info coming from the satellite tv for pc, as a result of in the end you’re triangulating your place from, you understand, just a few totally different factors in area.

You higher know very properly what these factors had been, cuz in any other case you’re not gonna know very properly. What, what your place is on the finish of the day. So it’s important to determine a solution to get, you understand, centimeter stage, you understand, orbital info of the GPS satellite tv for pc, with the intention to in flip kind of get your place to the kind of centimeter stage as properly.

And so how do you do this with kind of, you understand, as we take into consideration this type of evolving from, you understand, the type of, the strategies which have been used prior to now to, you understand, what may be doable, sooner or later? Effectively, it seems that one of many massive type of inputs to that system, By way of how rapidly you will get from type of meter stage place right down to type of the centimeter stage is how rapidly the satellites transfer overhead.

And it seems that in the event you make it such that the satellites transfer overhead in a short time, there’s simply much more info in that kind of very fast go than you could have from these additional satellites, which historically are type of medium earth orbit to assist that convergence get you from type of a tens of minutes type of place to a minute or much less type of place. And, and naturally there are strategies which are making that all the time higher on a regular basis from a medium earth orbit perspective. You already know, while you’re utilizing type of the normal GSS satellites to, to get to that top precision, there are strategies evolving to, to get there sooner and sooner.

However when you have that very quick kind of movement throughout the sky, it simply makes these strategies even higher than that they might be in any other case. And in order that’s, that’s, that’s an instance of the type of factor you are able to do from a, you understand, business area section perspective to, to only kind of carry extra functionality to, to of us on the bottom.

lilly: And so when you have, in the event you get higher efficiency from having shifting autos, and so that you’re having them at decrease orbits, you additionally want like three or so to get your place does having greater than that assist? And what number of, like what number of whole satellites do you suppose is gonna be the correct quantity?

Tyler: Yeah, that’s a very good query.

What it comes right down to is, you understand, the extra satellites, the higher , that’s type of the easy query, the easy reply there, however mm-hmm, actually we’re, you understand, actually leveraging the same method that’s been used from, from GPS, which is called trilateration.. And what that’s, is there’s principally 4 unknowns in that system and the 4 unknowns or your X, Y, Zed (or sorry, that’s Canadian – XYZ) and, and time, and, and the rationale time is kind of an uncertainty there’s that the best way you calculate vary to the totally different satellites is that the satellite tv for pc sends a sign and the sign principally says it was this time once I despatched it, the sign takes a while for it to journey to you. You obtain it a while later.

And so the distinction between the time it was despatched and the time you obtained it’s the, principally the time of flight of the sign. And, and that point multiplied by the pace of sunshine is, is the vary to the satellite tv for pc. So, in the event you do this to a number of satellites, now you’ve calculated one thing that appears like a variety to you as a result of it’s, you understand, that, that point of flight to a handful of satellites, you’d consider, you understand, in 3d area, you want, you could have three satellites, three unknown, you understand, XYZ place.

You already know, what’s the, what’s that fourth unknown, you understand, why do you could have that additional unknown there? And that’s since you don’t know precisely what time it’s while you obtained it, you obtained it at some native time, which is, you understand, no matter time your telephone says, however you understand, how, how correct is that on the finish of the.

Tyler: And while you consider the sensitivity of the issue of how correct you actually need to know your time to do to calculate these ranges? Effectively, it seems. One nanosecond of time, uncertainty is, is a foot or 30 centimeter. And so it stacks up very, in a short time while you’re speaking about type of nanosecond of, of time information, and it’s very exhausting to, to keep up nanosecond kind of timing in your telephone.

Your time, time in your telephone is extra on the type of microsecond stage. More often than not, that’s type of the place it must be to, to do its job, which is type of telecommunications and all these things. However in the event you’re speaking about doing precision ranging. You really want that type of nanosecond type of functionality.

And so reasonably than, you understand, having to carry an atomic clock with you on a regular basis to kind of hold your time at that kind of, you understand, very excessive, exact stage, you simply remedy for it as an alternative. So that you add a fourth satellite tv for pc and now, you understand, you get the three dimensions and that point dimension to, to get your place kind of right down to, you understand, our expertise immediately is extra type of at that meter stage, however you understand, that kind of handful of nanosecond type of uncertainty type of level. And so, you understand, going, in order that type of minimal quantity it’s essential to get some type of place info is, is 4. It does assume you haven’t any different [00:10:00] sensors or, or nothing else like that.

So in the event you simply type of solely have your type of GPS receiver and nothing else 4 satellites is type of the naked quantity it’s essential to, to get that first place. so you understand, what number of extra do it’s essential to do the job? Effectively, properly, you need extra than simply 4 to type of be sturdy to that. And, and the reason being, is you begin kind of shifting round on the planet.

You, you could not all the time have international view in the event you type of have, you’re assuming you could have full view of the sky, all it takes is a constructing to dam one a part of the sky and also you solely have three. So you actually wanna design that system to, you understand, have greater than 4 in view always that you just had been on earth.

So that you just’re sturdy and issues like buildings being in the best way, bushes being in the best way. you understand, additionally simply, usually it’s, you understand, you’re gonna have simply one thing, that’s gonna offer you larger precision when you have much more satellites in view, trigger you could have extra measurements obtainable to you and.

The the proper of quantity that almost all, I assume I’ll say GNSS techniques have come to immediately is extra at that type of 10 or 12 variety of satellites in view. And that’s what GPS has immediately. That’s what the European Galileo system has immediately. And so type of in addition to the, the Russian, sorry, the Russian GLONASS, and Chinese language Beidou techniques are, are type of in that related variety of satellites.

And so. Tenish or so satellite tv for pc is about the place you need be type of at minimal and the extra satellites it’s important to simply higher, it’s gonna work in additional locations, I assume.

lilly: Mm-hmm if it’s 10 or 12, like seen out of your machine without delay, I assume they don’t have protection of in all places abruptly for the total constructed out constellation.

Tyler: Yeah, that’s an important query. And so when, while you’re speaking about type of the GPS system, which is deployed in a medium Earth orbit, which is about 20,000 kilometer altitudeor so. That system has about 30 satellites to realize that purpose. In order that’s about what number of satellites that while you deploy kind of on the excessive orbit that you just want. We’re focusing on a decrease orbit than that immediately, which is extra type of within the thousand kilometer vary..

So, so being that 20 instances nearer to earth, it seems that satellite tv for pc footprint simply shrinks and shrinks and shrinks. Trigger you’re simply a lot nearer to, to earth. And so that you want extra satellites to get the identical quantity of protection. So we’re focusing on a couple of 300 satellite tv for pc constellation or so.

lilly: OK. talking in regards to the time of flight measurements, is there any, like, would you think about and what are the benefits and downsides of, as an alternative of doing the a technique time of flight and having to maintain observe of all that synchronization with doing kind of a two-way ranging, the place your machine is the one pinging?

Tyler: Yeah, that’s an important query. And, and this was one of many unique trades that was achieved when of us had been creating GPS. And so some individuals smarter than me had, had put quite a lot of thought into, you understand, why you may. Do this type of system over say this type of two-way time switch system.

Yeah. And a number of the benefits there, the principle one is basically that in case your machine has to ping again to the satellite tv for pc, it does two issues and certainly one of them is that it, it, it’s a much bigger energy draw in your machine as a result of your machine is having to type of ship a radio sign {that a} satellite tv for pc has to obtain.

And in order that that’s one piece. And the opposite piece of it’s that the satellites then additionally should, have the ability to obtain all these indicators from a number of customers. And so you find yourself placing a constraint on the capability of the satellite tv for pc within the sense that now that satellite tv for pc has to get pings again from all these of us which are utilizing it, possibly only some hundred or just a few thousand individuals without delay can use it, which is, it finally ends up being type of a limiter on the variety of of us who can really use that system.

Whereas in the event you use this type of a technique time switch system, the place though you do want kind of an additional satellite tv for pc in view to resolve the issue. You’ll be able to in concept kind of, you understand, help an infinite variety of customers. And so, which is the case of GPS immediately, the place we see it supporting, you understand, billions of customers and you may, you understand, add as many gadgets as you need with out having that constraint.

In order that, that that’s the massive one.

lilly: Yeah, that is smart. So if you’re at this decrease orbit and GPS satellites, The standard authorities funded ones nonetheless exist above you. Can you employ them to higher observe your satellites?

Tyler: Yeah. completely. And that turns into one of many inputs, to the system, for positive.

As a result of, and people have achieved quite a lot of stuff in, in low Earth orbit, supported by GPS as a result of a part of the service quantity of, of these GPS is to help functions in decrease orbit. So you possibly can consider earth imagery, the worldwide area station, all these sorts of oldsters are, are utilizing that. That being stated, we’re designing the system to be GPS impartial.

Simply because there’s quite a lot of curiosity from that from of us to have that functionality, you’re not essentially absolutely depending on, you understand, this different system that you just’re augmenting having some potential to kind of function, with out enter from that system is, is advantageous in some methods, however it’s there and it’s a nice enter to the system that, that we’re placing collectively.

Tyler: And so it is smart to, to incorporate these measurements a method of simply making the system extra sturdy on the finish of the day.

For a consumer, like for the typical particular person with a telephone, will the GPS receiver that I have already got on my telephone work together with your system instantly? Or are there modifications that should be made?

Tyler: Yeah, that’s a very good query too. And it, there’ll seemingly should be modifications to, to the machine in your telephone immediately, however we see that as a part of the kind of pure evolution of how the GNSS chip units are evolving and. Considered one of our, I assume our normal strategy to this isn’t to compete with the GNSS receiver producers it’s to work with them, to include [00:15:00] our service into their gadgets.

And, and so actually working to, you understand, make it, make that kind of adoption as much like what say including a number of the new constellations which have come on-line over time is like, so, you understand, initially there was solely GPS chips after which there was GPS plus BLONASS chips, after which there GPS plus Galileo plus BLONASS plus Beidou chips.

And so actually making an attempt to type. Proceed that evolution of together with a few of these, these new techniques into these chip units. And so working with the, the GNSS receiver producers for more than likely the following technology of gadgets, as a result of significantly the type of ASIC gadgets that you just discover in your telephone are, are so optimized for a particular software that becoming in new issues is, is an enormous problem. For a number of the extra, I’ll say, this, kind of, excessive efficiency receivers which are on the market immediately which are supporting a number of the excessive precision functions on that facet of issues, that there’s some, chance of, having that be extra akin to a, a software program replace than,than kind of a brand new system.

lilly: Fascinating. I needed to pivot a bit of bit and speak extra about, a few of your work with autonomous autos and at like, there’s clearly a transparent, like interface between these two issues, however what are a number of the similarities and variations when it comes to like the way you really are fixing technical issues or the autonomy on the autos and the autonomy on the satellites or any of that type of factor?

Tyler: Yeah, that’s an important query. So I’ll say half, possibly I’ll, I’ll take. Give a bit of little bit of historical past of kind of the place a number of the, I assume, kind of my time in autonomous automobile kind of led to this curiosity in kind of pursuing this type of satellite tv for pc navigation facet. so once I entered the type of autonomous automobile realm and I used to be working at Ford motor firm on the time, a part of my position at that at the moment was kind of a mixture of know-how scouting and basic analysis .

In know-how scouting, it was actually working with the startups, significantly in Silicon valley, but additionally different know-how firms as properly, to actually set up, you understand, what’s the cutting-edge in, you understand, location and mapping applied sciences for. At first was, you understand, targeted on type of these stage 4 stage 5 absolutely autonomous autos, but it surely was additionally kind of supporting a number of the stage two stage three type of, driver help techniques as properly.

And kind of as soon as establishing that type of the place, what the state of they’re, the know-how was a part of that and kind of, making an attempt to determine which of them had been a number of the market leaders was to ascertain, you understand, what are the necessities for these techniques in the end, and which one is type of closest to the place the necessities ultimately should be.

So, you understand, what are the placement necessities for, for autonomy? And that turned out to be a, a a lot more durable query than I believe we initially thought, I believe of us had been like, oh, you understand, 10 centimeters appears to be the best quantity, but it surely was typically type of unjustified. It was kind of a ten centimeter appears to be a quantity the place the system fails the least.

In order that looks as if an excellent place to start out. However we needed to type of take a step again and say, okay, basically, you understand, what do these autos really want when it comes to, you understand, a bounding field, in the event you wanna consider it that method round a automobile to say, okay, that is the situational consciousness that I want to do that, this type of household of duties or this type of household of duties.

And actually what it turns into is there’s some functions the place it’s essential to know what highway you’re on. Some functions it’s essential to know what lane you’re in. And a few functions we actually have to know, you understand, to the centimeter, to have the ability to steer the automobile inside the lane and type of, you understand, get to the place you’re going.

And it turned out that, you understand, seeing type of the place, the place the necessities in the end wanted to go and type of the place the cutting-edge know-how was. There was not less than in my thoughts, very a lot a spot of, you understand, the place, the place issues, kind of stood immediately. And that led to the motivation, not less than from, from my facet to say, okay, properly, what’s one thing we will do from the infrastructure facet to assist fill that hole?

As a result of one of many tendencies that was occurring within the autonomous automobile trade, not less than within the time once I was, was there was. You already know, the, the type of variety of sensors, the quantity of compute on the autos was making these autos in some sense, prohibitively costly. You already know, you had a lot {hardware} on the autos, the autos had been type of these type of million greenback, very specialised type of autos.

It simply didn’t scale that properly, whereas in the event you can offload a few of that to the infrastructure facet, to help numerous autos, You already know, that appeared to make extra sense to me not less than. And, and so this went again to, okay, properly, what, you understand, being type of somebody from an aerospace background, place, navigation background, considering, okay, properly, what can we do from an area, infrastructure facet to help this type of place navigation and, and time downside.

Tyler: And so I believe when it comes to, you understand, the place these two issues are, are kind of coming collectively is, is basically seeing this from a okay, how can the, this infrastructure help the wants of these techniques? There are, in fact, some, some crossover between the 2 within the sense that there are applied sciences which are, I believe gonna be used on each within the sense that, you understand, you need these satellites while you’re deploying a big constellation to have, you understand, a excessive diploma of autonomy about themselves when it comes to fault monitoring when it comes to integrity monitoring.

As a result of in the end you’re making an attempt to. You already know, help these, you understand, security, important techniques within the, within the case of automotive. And so having the, you understand, quite a lot of that type of fault checking, kind of achieved in an autonomous method. In order that be caught in a short time, it turns into essential, however there’s additionally simply basic issues like, you understand, basically a automobile when it’s doing its navigation and positioning is operating [00:20:00] one thing like a Kalman filter or some one thing that’s combining these measurements.

These sorts of issues are gonna be operating on, on the satellites for orbit willpower. So it’s a unique context of downside, however you understand, basically the same software in, in the long run of the day. And there’s additionally some parts of, I believe, collaborative, you understand, infrastructure as properly. So while you consider, you understand, self-driving automobile driving by itself with an entire bunch of sensors on it, properly, that’s.

You’re type of simply making an attempt to switch one human in a automobile. Perhaps that’s not one of the simplest ways to do it. Perhaps there’s some benefits to having autos work collectively in a collaborative method the place, you understand, a automobile that’s maybe down the highway from you possibly can share sensor info or situational consciousness info with the intention to set up that situational consciousness, you understand, on the metropolis stage the place you possibly can see round corners, see aroundyou know, different obstacles you could’t see to type of get to the purpose the place you’re driving as safely, as you understand, all of the people mixed on the highway, reasonably than type of only one human can solely see one a part of the view of the world. And so I believe there’s a component of that that may discover its method into the, the area type of the area and type of floor segments that help these type of area techniques going ahead.

Y know, how can these techniques work collectively to seek out faults in one another the place you understand, these, these sorts of concepts that I believe are, are attention-grabbing as properly.

lilly: Yeah. that’s a very good level. And I’m a bit of in listening to extra about this concept of getting the satellites collaborate and kind of what are essentially the most technically difficult or technically promising parts of that.

Tyler: Yeah, that’s an important query as properly. There’s, I’ll say there’s quite a bit occurring in, within the area trade now, I believe even in comparison with, you understand, even 5 or 10 years in the past that they actually make quite a lot of this doable. And you understand, one of many massive ones is simply the dimensions of the constellations being deployed today.

And I believe that that’s enabled by. A number of issues just like the decrease price of entry to area, you understand, SpaceX is I believe one of many extra seen gamers there, however there are in fact others and the opposite is simply, you understand, totally different satellite tv for pc manufacturing strategies. So constructing satellites extra such as you would construct a automobile on an meeting line reasonably than type of these bespoke type of one satellite tv for pc’s in a room the place you could have a bunch of individuals type of placing stuff on it.

It’s a reasonably, it’s only a totally different mannequin of, of assembling this stuff. And. Once we take a look at the sorts of applied sciences that I believe are, are kind of coming into that kind of satellite tv for pc realm which are possibly even borrowed from locations like automotive, the place, you understand, particularly while you’re speaking about meeting and, and testing, you understand, making one thing that’s, you understand, very sturdy in, in type of excessive volumes that.

Type of brings this stuff collectively. I believe that, that that’s not less than one instance of, you understand, I believe the place these two industries can be taught from one another, I suppose. Uh, okay. So I believe so far as, you understand, autonomy on the satellites and the flexibility to kind of collaborate with one another, I believe one of many massive, the, one of many massive elements of that’s the potential for the satellites to only speak to one another, to start with. And so the flexibility to kind of go info.

Between satellites is, is I believe a, an enormous milestone kind of as a part of that. And I believe one of many enabling applied sciences there that we’re, that we’ve seen kind of come to mild is the, this potential of type of having inter satellite tv for pc communication hyperlinks between these satellites. And there’s been quite a lot of, I believe development of in each optical and radio, type of,you understand, intersatellite hyperlinks between that to go that info round.

And I believe that, that, I imply step one to collaboration as it’s an automotive as properly, it’s simply establishing I believe that that’s commonplace and likewise the kind of potential for this stuff to go info between one another. I believe there’s definitely been challenges in automotive on that facet with, with establishing requirements, with issues like vehicle-to-things, so V2 V to X, so automobile -to-stuff, or different automobile type of communication hyperlinks and establishing simply, you understand, what’s the spectrum that we shared? What’s the protocols for these type of communications? And I believe it’s, it’s one factor to do it in a type of. You already know, if one say automotive OEM decides to do it a sure method they usually can do this between all their autos.

It’s one other to do it kind of throughout autos of all totally different producers, kind of in a standardized method. And so I believe that that’s that’s one of many challenges is simply kind of establishing, establishing kind of the know-how and the type of requirements for that communication throughout, throughout satellites.

And naturally, as we take into consideration deploying our system, we expect largely of kind of communication between the satellites that now we have. However it’s attention-grabbing to consider, you understand, potential, you understand, cross kind of, communication between different platforms as properly.

lilly: Yeah. And do you intend on, do you anticipate having optical or RF cross hyperlinks or each in your system?

Tyler: Yeah, I believe that’s one thing that we’re exploring. So I believe it’s one thing that’s on the desk, however I believe that we’re nonetheless in, we’re on the section proper now the place now we have deployed our first demonstration satellite tv for pc. And so for the demonstration satellite tv for pc, it has, I’ll say one thing that’s akin to, you understand, inter satellite tv for pc hyperlink, which we’re exploring between this, our kind of second launch that’s coming, subsequent 12 months.

And so. That’s one thing that we’re exploring as a part of the long run deployment of the system, however the kind of earlier iterations might, it might not be required. So it’s, it’s one thing that we’re exploring and it’s one thing we’re keeping track of, however, it it’s possibly not essentially one thing that’s basically important to the system working.

lilly: Effectively, congratulations in your first launch and your upcoming second launch. I needed to pivot a bit of bit extra really, and listen to a bit about, a few of your [00:25:00] analysis again while you had been within the academia and like how that led into, each your autonomous automobile and your present jobs.

Tyler: Yeah, that’s a, yeah, that brings me again

So to return to, I assume my days as a grad pupil. So, the lab that I labored in was the GPS analysis lab at Stanford college. And it was a very nice setting for me. It was one which targeted, you understand, very a lot on that type of place navigation downside, but additionally one which targeted a bit of bit on, you understand, operational tasks for the FAA, in addition to we had been working with the federal aviation administration.

You already know, help these type of security, important techniques, you understand, plane utilizing GPS to land plane utilizing GPS in flight. so, you understand, interested by issues about, you understand, what are security important use instances of place navigation and time particularly in transportation. And on this case, it was supporting civil aviation.

And in order that was a very, that was a very attention-grabbing setting for me, since you may see the work that you just’re doing immediately impacting that trade. In some variety of years, it wasn’t that the grad college students had been engaged on issues, you understand, immediately type of in operation, however that it wasn’t too far-off from type of essentially seeing the lifetime of operation.

So I believe from a, you understand, how that led into type of the, the work that I used to be doing, type of within the autonomous automobile world. I believe that interested by the issue of, you understand, what are the type of ranges of situational consciousness that autos want when it comes to place navigation and time, you understand, what’s the stage of type of security and integrity that these techniques want?

Actually utilizing that type of framework in a structured solution to develop, you understand, what may that framework appear to be in automotive, which was type of new to that concept of getting place and data as a part of that type of security, important enter to, you understand, steering the automobile and, you understand, type of protecting the human partially within the loop or completely within the loop, that are type of issues that aviation had kind of labored by way of as a result of there are occasions the place the plane will fly itself.

There are occasions the place the plane type of has the pilot within the. So it’s, you understand, interested by these sorts of issues in that framework. And I believe that that, that type of facet of issues immediately led to the work that we did in kind of establishing, you understand, what may be the framework and necessities for these autos going ahead.

You already know, interested by this in type of a civil aviation strategy, as a result of. And while you examine the numbers, you understand, civil aviation actually has the most effective observe report you could provide you with when it comes to security and, you understand, per miles traveled with people and type of all these by all metrics. It’s it’s method safer to sit down at an airplane than it’s to sit down in a automobile that that was that’s usually the, the takeaway and a part of that’s the properly that people have quite a bit much less people in automobiles have quite a bit much less coaching than people in plane who’re working these issues.

And so it’s a. That that’s simply basically a kind of variations. And, and, and a part of that’s, is that if one thing goes unsuitable in an plane, such as you higher know what to do rapidly, whereas one thing goes unsuitable in a automobile, you possibly can pull off to the facet of the highway. And so, and so simply basically some, some variations there, however I believe that that’s, that’s one of many massive ones I believe was, you understand, bringing a few of that framework from, you understand, aviation to automotive and interested by these, these issues in that method.

And the opposite facet of that was the type of. You already know, the type of business GPS and GNSS facet of that. So, you understand, transitioning from, you understand, You already know, the federal government system that helps, you understand, all these billions of gadgets and created all this type of, you understand, financial improvement and type of all these developments, and interested by how that may evolve type of within the so-called type of new area age, which is the age while you consider issues like SpaceX and, you understand, these type of gamers which have actually challenged the kind of so-called conventional aerospace, which is, extra the type of, you understand, while you consider that as type of these longer timelines, very danger hostile type of gamers. And, and, you understand, interested by how, how may a few of these type of new strategies or new approaches in area, interested by these type of mega constellations which are being proposed by, on the time they had been being proposed, it didn’t but exist. So we’re speaking about type of Starlink and OneWeb and you understand, all these type of gamers, which appeared type of like science fiction on the time, this was type of within the 2015 type of period earlier than quite a lot of these things launched something or had been deployed.

These had been all type of concepts on. you understand, a few of that work was kind of the elemental, okay, properly, what may you have the ability to do with one thing like this? If, if these type of satellites really come to exist, if the launch prices really come down, you understand, what may be some functionality that you can leverage from that type of area infrastructure?

So in the event you may deploy one thing like that for place navigation and time, you understand, what may that appear to be? What may the capabilities be? However I believe at that time it was type of a okay, properly that, that’s an attention-grabbing downside, however, It was in some sense, missing motivation. It was kind of a, okay, properly, who desires this?

You already know, what do we want this for? GPS works very well. Each, I believe on the time it was like, properly, we’ve achieved it. You already know, GPS is in everybody’s pocket. What else may you need? And, and it wasn’t till I, I labored in an trade the place GPS, because it stood, wasn’t fairly sufficient for, for what they wanted that I kind of these dots linked at not less than on my facet to, to see, okay, properly possibly this type of strategy may help this different facet as properly.

So in some sense, you understand, there’s, I assume studying from each side and type of linked this stuff collectively, I assume.

lilly: Yeah, that makes [00:30:00] sense. It’s very attention-grabbing to listen to the way it all connects. we’re developing on time, however I do have one final query. which is, are there different business gamers making an attempt to get into the GNSS area?

Like, do you could have any actual rivals proper now?

Tyler: Oh, there, positive. There’s positively of us on the market. So we’re not the one ones doing this. I believe that they’re, I gained’t title all of them by title. Trigger I, I can’t converse to everybody’s plans on the market, however I can converse to a, just a few normal tendencies that, that we’ve seen.

And one is that, you understand, the, the oldsters on the market who’re constructing these type of mega constellations for communication functions. So, you understand, the web from the sky type of of us are positively serious about offering one thing. I believe that it, it appears very totally different from, from what we’re working in the direction of, which is extra of a , you understand, particular excessive efficiency, you understand, GNSS, P and T type of service, which appears quite a bit like what you have already got in your telephone when it comes to chip set, when it comes to these sorts of, you understand, antenna, these sorts of things. If you take a look at a number of the, you understand, the communication, techniques, you understand, actually they’re a totally totally different frequency bands.

Their consumer terminals are often fairly giant as a result of we want a fairly large antenna to kind of, full the hyperlink finances to get the type of knowledge charges that they’re speaking about. It, it they’re, they’re definitely interested by it, however I believe that, you understand, their major purpose is basically, you understand, communication, but it surely’s kind of a, oh, we will, you understand, now we have this method, we will most likely help some type of navigation as properly.

At the very least that’s what we’ve seen to this point. So I believe that that’s, that’s one of many rivals on the market. By way of others, we’ve seen some attention-grabbing stuff occurring from really one of many main, automotive OEMs on the market, which is a Chinese language firm known as Geely. They’re really constructing and deploying their very own constellation, which is basically to help autonomous automotive actions. It’s, you understand, communication navigation type of multi functional package deal. And in order that’s, you understand, seems to be, you understand, one of many massive, one of many massive gamers on the market. And so there there’s definitely another firms as properly. There are some established companies on the market immediately, for instance, from Iridium, which is offering some P and T companies immediately.

And there are different satellite tv for pc companies offering extra correction companies. So issues which are correcting, offering extra info to kind of praise the GPS sign, however not an extra, you understand, kind of ranging or GPS sign itself. In order that’s, I believe one of many, one of many main variations there.

Tyler: So, and we, we, and I believe since we’ve been doing this, we’ve seen some others, another firms kind of suggest some related issues as properly. So I believe we’re, it seems to be that, issues are heading on this route, I assume.

lilly: Effectively, yeah, it’s positively an thrilling area to be in an thrilling time.

And. A extremely attention-grabbing concept. Thanks a lot for talking with me.

Tyler: Yeah, my pleasure. Thanks once more for, for the invitation to talk right here immediately. And, yeah, this was nice dialogue.


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Lilly Clark


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