During the alpine descent stage, nearly twenty cyclists agreed to wear a receiver in the back of their shirts. The devices, which now weigh only 95 grams, received data from satellites and relayed them for processing by a computer in The Netherlands.
Near the arrival line, in the technical zone of the tour, this data was presented on computer screens, allowing an appreciation of the performance of each tracked rider, notably showing their speed. For the first time it was possible to follow this many riders and see their positions in real time with an accuracy of one metre.
For the individual time-trial between Le Creusot and Montceau-les-Mines, the benefits of satellite tracking were perfectly illustrated by the race situation. Just a day ahead of the final arrival on the Champs Elysées in Paris, three riders were ranked within 30 seconds of one another in the overall standings and the yellow jersey could change wearer at any moment. The immediate visualisation offered by EGNOS showed in real time how the overall standings were being modified as the stage progressed.
A number of riders were equipped with the prototype receivers and in particular the first fifteen in the overall standing were all tracked. This made it possible to have a live view of the positions of the various riders who could hope to take the yellow jersey and therefore to watch American Floyd Landis take the yellow from Spaniard Oscar Pereiro and Germany’s Andreas Kloden grab second place from Carlos Sastre of Spain.
This demonstration was conducted by two Small/Medium Enterprises (SMEs), the Dutch company Sport-Track, which is developing the tracking software, and Trimaran of France, specialising in the production of 3D images. It was possible to see what the Tour de France might be like in the future, since space technologies could be used throughout the race and for all the riders.
These full scale tests showed that satellite positioning can bring an immediate understanding of the race. This has numerous applications, the design of which will depend on the needs of the potential users: the organisers, the teams, the media or the public.
EGNOS (European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service) is a programme of ESA, the European Commission, and Eurocontrol. It comprises a network of around 40 ground stations distributed throughout Europe to record, adjust and improve data from the American GPS system. The modified signals are then relayed by geostationary satellites to the receivers of system users. In contrast to the 15 to 20 metre accuracy offered by GPS, the European system is accurate to better than 2 metres, and unlike GPS, a military system, the European version provides guaranteed signal quality.
EGNOS, which is currently in pre-operational service, is Europe’s first step in satellite navigation as it prepares for Galileo, which will be the first civilian navigation system, with a constellation of 30 satellites.
Dominique Detain | alfa
Magnetic Quantum Objects in a "Nano Egg-Box"
25.07.2017 | Universität Wien
3-D scanning with water
24.07.2017 | Association for Computing Machinery
Physicists working with researcher Oriol Romero-Isart devised a new simple scheme to theoretically generate arbitrarily short and focused electromagnetic fields. This new tool could be used for precise sensing and in microscopy.
Microwaves, heat radiation, light and X-radiation are examples for electromagnetic waves. Many applications require to focus the electromagnetic fields to...
Strong light-matter coupling in these semiconducting tubes may hold the key to electrically pumped lasers
Light-matter quasi-particles can be generated electrically in semiconducting carbon nanotubes. Material scientists and physicists from Heidelberg University...
Fraunhofer IPA has developed a proximity sensor made from silicone and carbon nanotubes (CNT) which detects objects and determines their position. The materials and printing process used mean that the sensor is extremely flexible, economical and can be used for large surfaces. Industry and research partners can use and further develop this innovation straight away.
At first glance, the proximity sensor appears to be nothing special: a thin, elastic layer of silicone onto which black square surfaces are printed, but these...
3-D shape acquisition using water displacement as the shape sensor for the reconstruction of complex objects
A global team of computer scientists and engineers have developed an innovative technique that more completely reconstructs challenging 3D objects. An ancient...
Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.
For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...
26.07.2017 | Event News
21.07.2017 | Event News
19.07.2017 | Event News
27.07.2017 | Life Sciences
27.07.2017 | Life Sciences
27.07.2017 | Health and Medicine