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6/29/2015

BasicConcepts(GPSandGIS)Part4

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BasicConcepts(GPSandGIS)Part4
Position
MeasuringSystem

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PreparingtoCorrelateGPSDatawithMapData
{_}TakeouttheUSGStopographicquadrangle(atopomap,usualscale1:24,000)oftheappropriategeneral
area.Thereceivercandisplayageographicpositioninseveralcoordinatesystems.Under"Configuration~
Coordinates"youwillfind
Degrees,Minutes,anddecimalfractionsofminutes(Deg&Min)
Degrees,Minutes,Seconds,anddecimalfractionsofseconds(Deg,Min&Sec)
OrdinanceSurveyofGreatBritain(OSGB)
UniversalTransverseMercator(UTM)
EarthCentered,EarthFixed(ECEF)
TrimbleGrid
{__}Choose"Deg&Min."
{__}Under"Configuration~Datum"youwillfindalistwithalargenumberofchoices,storedinalphabetical
order.Youcanscrollthroughthelistbyholdingdowneitherthe"up"keyorthe"down"key.Choose
Bahamas18(NAD27)withthe"CMD"key.
{__}ThenchooseWGS84(World),whichisthefundamentalGPSdatum.WGS84identifiestheWorld
GeodeticSystemdevelopedin1984.
{_}Finally,notethedatumofthemapyouareusing.Thedatumisusuallyfoundinthelowerlefthandcorner
(e.g.,NAD27,theNorthAmericanDatumof1927).Under"Configuration~Datum"settheGPSreceiverto
operateinthisdatum,shownas"NAm.1927Conus"ifthisisthedatumofyourmapasitiswithmany
USGStopographicalmaps.

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TosettheseoptionswiththeGeo3youuseFn&OPTIONSetup~Configurations~Coordinates.TheGeo3
containsanannoyingnumberofDatumchoices.Ifyouholddownanarrowkeyitscrollsthroughthemnot
quickly,butitbeatswearingoutyourthumbandtheswitch.Ashortcut:thedatumchoicesareinalphabetical
orderthelistwrapsaroundtheend(i.e.,"A"comesafter"Z").
TheotheroptionsyouneedtosetinthissectionareunderFn&OPTIONSetup~Configurations~Units.
CustomSetup
1.DistanceUnits
2.AngularUnits
3.VelocityUnits
4.Altitude
5.AltReference
6.NorthReference
{_}Under"Configuration~Units~CustomSetup"youwillfindthismenu:
{_}Under"DistanceUnits"chooseKilometers.DistanceunitsavailableontheGeoExplorerincludeYards,
Meters,Kilometers,NauticalMiles(6080feet),Miles(statute,5280feet),"InternatlFeet"(internationalfeet,
whereaninchis0.0254meters,exactly),and"U.S.SurveyFeet"(whereameterisconsideredtobe39.37
inches,exactly).
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{_}Examineyourmaptodeterminetheappropriatedistanceunitsfortheupcomingfieldwork.Feelfreeto
changethisvaluelaterifyoushouldwishvisualoutputinsomeotherunits.
{_}Under"Configuration~Units~CustomSetup~AltitudeUnits"chooseMetersorFeet,dependingonthe
mapyouwillbeusing.
{_}Under"Configuration~Units~CustomSetup~Altitude
Reference"chooseGeoid(MSL).The"altitudereference"maybesettoeitherMSL(whichiselevationabove
MeanSeaLevel)orHAE(whichisHeightAbovethereferenceEllipsoidthetheoreticalmathematicalsurface
thatapproximatesthesurfaceoftheEarth).Sinceatthistimeyouprobablydonotknowtherelationship
betweentheHAEandMSLatyourlocation,youareselectingMSL.
{__}Under"Configuration~Units~CustomSetup~NorthReference"choose"North,True"or"South,True"
dependingonthemapyouwillbeusing.

DoubleCheckingtheConfiguration
{__}Nowdoasummarycheckoftheconfiguration.Underthemenuchoice"Main~Configuration"checkthe
followingcriticaloptions:
RoverOptions~Dynamics:Land
RoverOptions~PosMode:3D
RoverOptions~ElevMask:15
RoverOptions~SNRMask:4
RoverOptions~PDOPMask:6
RoverOptions~AntennaHt:1.00(oryourwaistheightinmeters)
RoverOptions~LogDOPs:Off
RoverOptions~Velocity:Off
RoverOptions~FilePrefix:(donotchange)
RoverOptions~NotinFeatureRate:Off
Coordinates~Deg&Minutes(anddecimalfractionalpartsthereof)
Datum:(settoyourmap)
Units~Custom~Distance:(settoyourmap)
Units~Custom~Angular:Degrees
Units~Custom~Velocity:KilometersperHour
Units~Custom~AltitudeUnits:(settoyourmap)
Units~Custom~AltitudeReference:Geoid(MSL)
Date&Time~SetLocalTime:(adjusttolocaltime)
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Date&Time~TimeDisp:Local12Hours
BatteryUsage:(resetifbatteryfreshlycharged)
UsethischecklisteachtimeyoutaketheGeoExplorerintothefieldmodifyingitasnecessary.

FinalInsideActivity
YouarealmostreadytotaketheGeoExplorerintothefield.Onethingremainstobedone.Whileyouarestill
inside,readthroughthedirectionsforPROJECT1Bbelowcompletelytoprepareyourselfforthefieldwork.
Developafeelforthesortofdatayouwillbecollecting.Practicechangingfromscreentoscreen.Outside,with
thewindblowingandthetrafficroaring,isnotimetodiscoverthatyoudonthaveasolidsurfacetowriteonor
thatyoudontknowjustwhatitisyouaresupposedtobedoing.Alittlepreparationnowwillpaybigdividends
later.
IfyouaregoingtocollectdatawiththeGeo3youalsoneedasquareabout2.52.5inchesmadeofacouple
oflayersofaluminumfoil.Andafewinchesofmaskingtape.
{__}ReadoverPROJECT1Bbelow.

PROJECT1B
NowOutside
Thisisanexercisebestdonewithtwopeople.Youwilltakethemap,yournotebook,andtheGPSreceiver
outsidetomakeobservations.Youwillnotyetplacethedatayoucollectintoacomputerfilebutyouwilllearn
alotaboutthefactorsaffectingdatacollection.(Ifyouarenotsurethatthesettingsonthereceiverarethose
youputinduringProject1A,verifythemagainstthoseintheprevioussection:"DoubleCheckingthe
Configuration.")
{__}Asyouleavetheclassroomorlaboratorytotraveltothesitefordatacollection,turntheuniton.Ifyou
carrythereceiverexposedtothesky,itwillbeginto"acquire"satellites.Itisreofimportantwhichmenuappears
onthedisplaywheneverthereceiverison,it"looks"forsatellitesandcalculatespositionsifitcan.
{__}Movetoaspotoutdoors,wellawayfrombuildingsandheavytreecanopy.Ifitisreasonablylevelandnot
shroudedbynearbyhillsormountains,somuchthebetter.Andifyoucanlocatetheantennaoverageodetic
monument,forwhichyoucanfindtheofficiallatitudeandlongitude(perhapsfromtheNGSwebsite,
www.ngs.noaa.gov),super.
{__}Lookatthemaptolocateyourapproximateposition.
{__}Holdtheantennaoverthespotforwhichthecoordinatesaretobedetermined.Theantennainthereceiver
isjustbelowtheimageofthesextantembossedintheplasticofthetopofthereceiver.Holdtheunitasfarin
frontofyouasiscomfortable,withthetoppartclosetohorizontal,tiltedonlyenoughsoyoucanreadthe
screen.
GPSStatus
I.SatTracking

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2.SatPosn&SNR
3.SatHlth&URA

4.SatChnlData
Actually,nopositionwillbecomfortableafterafewminutesyouwillwanttopasstheunittoyourpartnerso
youcandropyourarmandlettheblooddrainbackintoyourfingers.Analternativeistoputtheunitonthe
groundandcrouchorsitdownsoyoucanreadthescreen.Thisislessfuninwinter,orwhenthereispoisonivy
about.Ineverclaimedfieldworkwaseasy.Youmightbringatableortripodwithyou,orfindafencepost.Be
careful:thepowercordmakesiteasytobouncethereceiverofftheground.Itsatoughunitbutitisalso
expensivedoyoureallywanttotestit?
{_}Keepyourheadandbodyoutoftheway,i.e.,dontblockthesignalfromasatellitetothereceiver.Youare
opaque,asfarasthehighfrequency,shortlengthGPSwavesareconcerned.Remember,thereceiverislooking
forsatellitesaslowas15degreesabovethehorizon.Itseasytoforgetthisandobstructtheantenna,causing
thereceivertoloseitslockonasatellite.

TrackingSatellites
{__}StartingwiththeMainMenu,navigatetothe"GPSStatus"menuandpress"CMD."Thefollowingwill
appear:Highlight"SatelliteTracking"andpress"CMD."The"SatTracking"screenwillappear,listingsome
twodigitnumbers.Thesearethedesignations,calledPRNnumbers,19thatyourGPSreceiverusestoidentify
thesatellites.Thenumbersliebetween1and32,inclusive.
Thenumbersthatappearnowarethoseofthesatellitesthatthereceivermightbeabletopickup,basedon
yourpositionandtime.Theyareusuallythosewhichareabovethehorizonandthespecifiedelevationmask
angle.Thereceiverdetermineswhichsatellitesareavailablebyformulasbuiltintoitscomputerandbyan
almanactransmittedbyeachsatellitewhichdescribesthegenerallocationofallthesatellites.
Sinceyouareoutside,presumablythereceiverislockedontosomesatellites.Thenumberoflittleshaded
boxesinthelowerlefthandcornerofthescreenindicateshowmany.Thereceiverneedstobereceivingatleast
foursatellitesbeforelocationfixesarecomputed.20Becausethegeometrywhentheelevationangleissetat15
allowsthereceivertoconsidersatellitesinaboutonethirdofthesky,itmaytrackeightsatellites,orevenone
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ortwomore.
Onemorebitofinformationmaybelearnedfromthisscreen.Smallarrowsuptofourofthemmay
beseenpointingtosatellitenumbers.Thesearethesatelliteswhichthereceiverisusing(orattemptingto
use)tocalculateitsposition.Tosummarizethescreen:
Ifasatellitesnumberappearsonthescreen,then,accordingtothealmanacthesatelliteshouldbephysically
inthespaceabovetheuser,atananglegreaterthanthesettingoftheelevationmask.Thiswouldtheoretically
makethesatelliteavailableforpositionfinding.
Ifanarrowappearsnexttothenumber,thesatelliteisbeingconsideredforpositionfinding.Ifapositionis
found,thesatelliteisbeingusedforpositionfinding.
Thenumberoflittleboxesindicatesthenumberofsatellitesthatthereceiveristracking,thatis,
electronicallylockedonto.
TheGeo3displayismuchdifferentactuallymucheasier.GoFn&OPTION~GPS.ByusingtheOPTION
buttonyoucantogglebetweentheStandardscreenandtheAdvancedscreen.TheStandardscreenshowsa
skyplotofthesatellitesthatarebeingusedforpositionfinding,thatarebeingtracked,andthatcouldbetracked.
Italso,mostimportantly,showsthecoordinatesoftheantennaofthereceiver.TheAdvancedscreenshowsa
tableofsatelliteinformation.Acheckmarkindicatesthesatellitecouldbeorisbeingusedtocompute
positions.
{_}Afewminutesmayelapsebeforetheunitlocksontoenoughsatellitestobegingivingpositionfixes.Ifmore
than10minutesgobywithnopositionfix,changethePDOPtoeight(8)andmakesureyouarentobstructing
thesignal.
{_}OncetheGeoExploreristrackingfourormoresatellites,select"Position"fromtheMainMenuandwrite
downthelatitude,longitude,andaltitude.Whenlockedontofourormoresatellites,thereceivercomputesthe
positionoftheantennaaboutthreetimeseverytwoseconds.(Iftheword"OLD"appearsonthescreenit
indicatesthatthevaluepresentedisonethatwascollectedinthepastperhapstheimmediatepastandthat
thereceiverisnotcalculatingnewpositions.Makecertainthattherearenoobstructionsblockingthesignals.)
{_}Notethetime.Plantowritedownanewpositionreadinginyournotebookeveryminute,approximatelyon
theminute,forthenextquarterofanhour.
{_}Inbetweenwritingpositionfixesinyournotebookyoushouldrecordsomeotherinformation.Movebackto
the"SatTracking"screen.Notedownthenumbersofthesatelliteswhichappearthere.Circlethenumbersof
thesatellitesthereceiverisusingtocomputepositions.Alsonotehowmanysatellitestheunitisreceiving
signalsfrom.Writedownthevalueidentifiedas"PDOP."
{_}Nowitisprobablyabouttimetogobacktothe"Position"screentowritedownthenextsetofposition
coordinates.Theyshouldbecloseto,butnotexactlythesameas,thoseyouwrotedownaminuteago.The
screenshouldnotsay"OldPosition."Ifitdoes,youprobablygotyourheadinthewayofasatellitesignal.
{__}Nowgotothe"SatPosn&SNR"screen(itsunder"GPSStatus").Youwillseeseveralhorizontallinesof
informationoneforeachsatellitebeingtracked.Oneitemofinformationdisplayedforeachsatelliteis
"Elv"anabbreviationforElevation.Ifyoucouldstandandpointastraightarmdirectlytowardthesatellite,
theelevationwouldbetheangle,indegrees,thatyourarmmadewiththeEarth,assumingthesurfaceislevel
whereyouarestanding.Zerodegreeswouldrepresentasatelliteatthehorizonninetydegreeswouldrepresent
asatellitedirectlyoverhead.
{_}Whoops.Timetowritedownanotherlatlonaltposition.
{_}Returntothe"SatPosn&SNR"screen.Thecolumnafter"Elv"isidentifiedas"Az"whichstandsfor
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Azimuth.TheAzimuthspecifiestheanglebetweenduenorthandthesatellite:Pointyourarmtowardthenorth,
thenrotateyourbodyclockwiseuntilyourarmispointedatthesatellite.Thenumberofdegreesyourbody
rotatedistheazimuth.
{_}Writedownanotherpositionfix.
Thelastcolumnonthe"SatPosn&SNR"screenisthe"signaltonoiseratio"(recallthatitisanindicationof
thestrengthofthesignalfromthesatellite).Acceptablevaluesaregreaterthanorequaltofourwhichisthe
valueyousetastheSNRmask.Valuesmayrangeupto35orso.
{_}Foreachsatellitebeingtracked,recorditselevation,azimuth,andsignalstrength.
{_}Putyourhandovertheantenna(itisdirectlyunderthelittlesextantembossedintheplasticabovethe
screen)andwatchthesignalstrengthdrop.
{_}Determinewhereoneortwosatellitesareinthesky,relativetoyourposition.Trytointerposeyourbody
betweentheunitandasatellitetoseeifyoucanmakethesignalstrengthdropforasinglesatellite.Inthe
middlelatitudesintheUnitedStatestherewillgenerallybemoresatellitestoyoursouththannorth
{_}Afterrecordinganotherfix,movetothe"SatHlth&URA"screen.Thisdisplaysthe"health"ofthe
satellite,asdeterminedbyinformationbroadcastbythesatelliteitself,andthe"UserRangeAccuracy"(URA)
anumericalindicationoftheaccuracyonemightexpectwhenusingthissatellitetocomputeapositionfix.
Satellitehealthwillbeindicatedby"OK,"by"U"forunhealthy,orby"n/a"for"notavailable,"indicatingthat
nosignalisbeingreceived.
"URA"mayhavevaluesrangingfromoneto1024.Valuesgreaterthan16indicatethattheDoDiscorrupting
thesignalfortheparticularsatelliteandthatanysinglepointcalculatedbyusingthatsatellitecouldbeinerror
byapproximately100meters.ThisisnotsupposedtohappenafterMayDay2000sotheURAvaluesshouldbe
ontheorderoftwotothree.TheunitsoftheURAnumberaremeters,butsinceagivenpositionisfoundusing
acombinationofseveralsatellites,theURAvalueofanyparticularoneisoflimitedusefulnessinestimating
error.
TheGeo3doesnotdisplayUserRangeAccuracy.
{_}Finishrecordingthe15positionfixes.Istheunitstilltrackingthesamesatellites?Isitusingthesame
constellationofsatellitestocomputefixes?Ifnot,writedownthenewinformation.
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