Start of SISTER!
New project to promote the integration of satellite and terrestrial communication with Galileo
Brussels, Belgium – The “Satcoms in Support of Transport on European Roads”, or SISTER project – in which ERTICO is a participant – officially started its activities with its kick-off meeting in London on 6-7 November 2006, hosted by the Project Coordinator AVANTI at the Inmarsat premises.
SISTER is a 36-month Integrated Project co-financed by EC DG Enterprise and Industry. It will promote the integration of satellite and terrestrial communication with Galileo to enable mass-market take-up by road transport applications. The scale of the road transport market, combined with innovative solutions to road transport problems requiring the integration of location-based services with communications, makes this market potentially extremely attractive.
Satellite navigation services have already proved their value in a large range of road transport applications and many new initiatives are planning to take advantage of Galileo services in the years ahead. Many of these applications require one or two-way communications services in order to function. In many cases to date, terrestrial communications such as GSM and GPRS have been employed. However, there are numerous circumstances where these technologies may not be sufficient to meet the communications requirements, such as:
- high availability applications in which communications coverage must be comprehensive, such as emergency applications;
- high reliability applications in which guaranteed quality of service is required, such as dangerous goods tracking;
- high capacity applications in which the terrestrial network infrastructure may be too expensive for the distribution of large volumes of data to many users using point-to-point communications, such as digital maps updating.
In many of these applications, satellite communications, whilst not replacing the need for terrestrial services, can complement them and lead to a superior overall solution.
SISTER will address the integration and convergence between satellite communications and Galileo from two perspectives:
- 1. How satellite communications can combine with Galileo to provide more effective applications;
- 2. How satellite communications can provide services that enhance the Galileo positioning service itself.
Several ERTICO Partners are members of the project consortium: Efkon, Navteq, Autoliv Electronics, Volvo Technology, and WirelessCar. ERTICO itself has a leading role in several workpackages, namely the applications analysis, dissemination and exploitation and the eCall proof of concept.