Yang Changfeng: BeiDou Navigation Satellite System Internationally Initiated the Hybrid Constellation Design

China’s 41st BeiDou navigation satellite, also known as the 17th global networking satellite of BeiDou-3 system and the first geostationary orbit satellite, was successfully launched late at night on November 1. In a media interview, Yang Changfeng, chief designer of BeiDou Navigation Satellite System, indicated that China’s BeiDou system is based on the national conditions and has appealing features. It initiated the world’s hybrid constellation design, including geostationary earth orbit (GEO) satellites, medium earth orbit (MEO) satellites and inclined geosynchronous orbit (IGSO) satellites, and set up navigation and positioning, short-message communications, and differential enhancement fusion technology system.

Due to its distinctive features and international initiation design, BeiDou System won the grand prize in 2016 China National Science and Technology Advancement Prizes and was selected as the leading scientific and technological achievements of 2017 World Internet Conference.

As Yang Changfeng introduced, the BeiDou Navigation Satellite System is a self-developed and independently operated global satellite navigation system being implemented in China. It is capable of providing users with high-precision and highly reliable positioning, speed measurement, and time services anywhere and anytime around the globe under any weather conditions, as well as a unique capability in short-message communications.

In terms of system construction, BeiDou-3 is a world-class benchmark, adding new functions such as inter-satellite links and global search and rescue. It broadcasts better navigation signals with a positioning accuracy of 2.5 to 5 meters, which has increased 1 to 2 times higher than BeiDou-2; in terms of application and industrialization, BeiDou has formed a complete industry chain, putting standardized use into national security and key areas and scaled application into mass consumption fields, which is stimulating a new application model of “BeiDou+” integration.

BeiDou System has issued 6 versions of signal interface control file and 1 version of service performance standard. Integrating with the Internet, cloud computing, and big data, BeiDou built a high-precision space-time information cloud service platform, and launched the world’s first accelerated positioning auxiliary system supporting BeiDou. Its services cover more than 200 countries and regions, the number of users exceeds 100 million, and the amount of daily services reaches 200 million times. There are more than 14,000 related enterprises with 450,000 employees in China.

Yang Changfeng indicated that, according to the plan, the basic system of BeiDou-3 will be built by the end of 2018 to provide services to the countries and regions along the “Belt and Road”. By the end of 2020, a world-leading BeiDou-3 system will be completed and provide services around the globe. By 2035, a comprehensive BeiDou system offering positioning, navigation, and time-granting services will be completed.