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Other SBASOther SBAS
Title SouthPAN
Edited by GMV
Level Basic
Year of Publication 2021
Logo GMV.png

The Southern Positioning Augmentation System (SouthPAN) is the Australia and New Zealand’s SBAS under development and will be the first of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere when it reaches full operational capability in 2025. SouthPAN will provide Australians and New Zealanders with world-class access to positioning services that will improve the accuracy from the current 5 to 10 metres, down to 10 centimetres on land and sea without the need for mobile or internet coverage.


In 2016, Geoscience Australia and Land Information New Zealand launched a trial SBAS test-bed to coordinate and undertake user testing of SBAS in Australia and New Zealand and to study the economic benefits of the SBAS technology. In addition to it an independent report by Ernst and Young (EY) recognised the economic benefits of an SBAS system in 2019 [1]. In the 2018-19 Federal Budget the Australian Government announced an investment of $224.9 million to enable precise positioning for Australia, being $160.9 million of those dedicated to fund the development of SouthPAN [2]. In February 2020, Australia and New Zealand announced that they would jointly fund the SouthPAN SBAS system. The project is led by Geoscience Australia and Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) under the Australia New Zealand Science, Research and Innovation Cooperation Agreement [3].

Australasian SVAS Test-Bed Demonstrator Trial

As a partnership between LINZ and GA, the Australasian SBAS Trial took place from January 2017 until January 2019 involving 27 demonstration projects of 10 different key sectors. [4] GA selected GMV for the provision of the processing facilities in charge of the augmentation system, Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) for the signal uplink to the GEO satellite, and Inmarsat (LSE: ISAT) for the SBAS payload in the 4F1 satellite [5]. During the trial, the SBAS system provided corrections for GPS using LINZ and GA’s networks of GNSS tracking stations. This information was then processed by GA and the corrections sent to the GEO satellite that covered the Australasian region. [4] During the test-bed phase, the SBAS system provided the following services [6][7]:

  • SBAS (aviation use)
    • L1 SBAS.
    • GPS only
    • Sub-metre accuracy
    • L1/L5 GPS
    • E1/E5a Galileo
    • Sub-metre accuracy
  • Precise Point Positioning (PPP)
    • GPS Precise Satellite Clocks and Orbits
    • GPS and Galileo Precise Satellite Clocks and Orbits
    • 10 cm accuracy after convergence
    • Open access

Following the trial, an Economic Benefits Report was issued by FrontierSI which identified economic benefits to the value of AU$7.4b to the region over 30 years. [4] The SBAS test transmission was discontinued on 28 July 2020.

System's Status

As of December 2020 the procurement phase is underway. Initial signals will be provided gradually and it is expected to broadcast a test transmission service similar to the test-bed of 2017 in 2022 at the latest. This test service will be developed until it becomes a fully operational and certified system by 2025 for en-route, Terminal, and APV-I/LPV-250 operations [3][1][8]. Inmarsat-4F1 satellite has been secured to aid integration and testing activities. [8]