NIST logo

Publication Citation: The global positioning system, relativity, and extraterrestrial navigation

NIST Authors in Bold

Author(s): Neil Ashby;
Title: The global positioning system, relativity, and extraterrestrial navigation
Published: April 27, 2009
Abstract: Relativistic effects play an important role in the performance of the Global Positioning System (GPS) and in world-wide time comparisons. The GPS has provided a model for algorithms that take relativistic effects into account. In the future exploration of space, analogous considerations will be necessary for the dissemination of time and for navigation. We discuss relativistic effects that are important for the navigation system such as at Mars. We describe relativistic principles and effects that are essential for navigation systems, and apply them to navigation satellites carrying atomic clocks in orbit about Mars, and time transfer between Mars and Earth. It is shown that, as in the GPS, relativistic effects are not negligible.
Conference: Relativity in Fundamental Astronomy - Dynamics, Reference Frames and Data Analysis
Proceedings: Proceedings IAU Symposium, No. 261
Pages: 9 pp.
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
Dates: April 27-May 1, 2009
Keywords: relativity;navigation;reference systems;time;GPS
Research Areas: Physics, Time and Frequency
PDF version: PDF Document Click here to retrieve PDF version of paper (165KB)