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Friday, May 9, 2014

Centimeter-scale GPS To Start In Japan

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Olympic open water swimming debuted in a rowing basin in Beijing and was then showcased in the equally calm Serpentine in London. Next the Olympic 10 km marathon swim will be held in potentially rough water in Copacabana Beach during the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

Next will come the high-tech Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo in 2020.

Tokyo Bay will be the site of 2020 Olympic 10K Marathon Swim and triathlon swim leg.

The loop course for the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim will be held along Odaiba Marine Park which is within minutes of the center of Tokyo. Athletes will be in full view of grandstands along a well-designed shopping and entertainment destination.

The Olympic 10K Marathon Swim and triathlon swim leg will take place along a promenade where tens of thousands of fans can cheer for the favorite triathletes and open water swimmers. The water should be comfortably warm in the summer (22°C+) with only a slight bit of tidal action and a slight potential for mild wind-generated surface chop. The air temperature is expected to be toasty warm and fairly humid.

But what is perhaps most exciting to many Olympic fans will be the technological breakthrough to offer centimeter-scale GPS at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

Mitsubishi is currently building the world's first commercial, nationwide, centimeter-scale GPS system that will enable more precise, accurate, and reliable positioning, navigation, and timing services.

Currently this centimeter-scale level of GPS precision is not possible in non-military applications, but the Quazi-Zenith Satellite System will utilize a constellation of 7 different satellites and a ground network of 1,200 reference stations. One of the 7 satellites will always be positioned in a narrow path over Japan that will enable precision - on average - to be about 1.3 cm horizontally and 2.9 cm vertically.

While this will help with mapping, car navigation, personal navigation, and emergency systems for land-based individuals, we are excited about the possibilities for accuracy in the positioning and final placing of open water swimmers and triathletes.

Exciting times are head, both in and out of the water in Japan due to this unprecedented precision for creative applications of improved GPS. For more information on the Quasi-zenith Satellite System, visit here.

Photo shows Reira Hara, the team manager of the Japanese National Open Water Swimming Team, at the Cozumel FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix professional race taping down Japanese Olympic marathon swimmer Yasunari Hirai transponder with yellow tape.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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