On Earth, we are more than accustomed to using GPS on a daily basis to orient ourselves. Although it is a relatively recent invention, it still has a lot of room for improvement, and alternatives such as Galileo or GLONASS, which are somewhat more modern, show that geo-positioning still has a long way to go. However, the next great innovation in positioning may not be focused on its civil or military use on Earth.
And although there is still much left to have a permanent presence on the Moon, everything indicates that NASA wants to repeat the experience of any driver on a daily basis, but with the Lunar Rovers, so it is developing its version of satellite positioning for Moon.
It must be taken into account that this is a particularly complicated task: to orient oneself in space with reference to other known bodies. Within the solar system, it is already quite complicated, but thanks to the fact that the position of the stars is fixed, they can be used to triangulate the position and know the location, but it requires a lot of work.
Now we know that the space agency is developing a version similar to the GPS of the Earth but for use and orientation on the Moon.
“NASA has been driving high-altitude GPS technology for years; GPS around the Moon is the next frontier.” Luke Winternitz, the architect of NASA’s MMS system.
The problem is the technology we use on Earth does not exactly serve the Moon, so the challenge is much greater, and some of the concepts can not be applied to positioning systems outside of our planet, which implies on the paper to start of zero.
That is why he is working on a new browser computer that uses a special high gain antenna, a superprecise clock and other improvements over the previous NavCube space GPS and, of course, compatible with all terrestrial systems we already use on Earth. And that NASA uses for its missions.