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A New Breakthrough in Inertial Navigation

Issue 56

It is essential for a boat and especially for warship to know its position at all time. This remained a problem during centuries and celestial navigation has often been used to deal with it until GPS has changed this paradigm. But, in a war environment, GPS can easily be jammed and celestial navigation isn’t really an option anymore. The best alternative is to use a high grade INS (Inertial Navigation System) which, once initialized with an absolute position, can calculate the current position without any GPS aiding and in a perfectly stealthy manner, relying on measurement from accelerometers (which measures longitudinal accelerations) and gyroscopes (which measures rate of turn).

IXBlue is a fairly young company in this area although it has been a main actor of FOG development for more than 20 years. Despite this, iXBlue has regularly shown a great capability for innovation. In addition to a high reliability, linked to a perfectly solid-state design, that have made its success for space applications, FOG technology has now exceeded RLG (ring laser gyroscopes) performances and has not yet reached a limit. As proof, iXBlue has recently unveiled, on the occasion of the French Naval Defence Show Euronaval, a new high grade product named Marins M7. This product guarantees a position of 1Nautic Mile after 72 hours without GPS. Euronaval Innovation trophy came to celebrate this huge progress in navigation technology.

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