Galileo system course at UNAM
From February 1 to 7, 2023, the National Autonomous University of Mexico conducted, within its inter-semester program, a course on navigation satellite systems and the new European Galileo system.
UNAM, as a partner of the consortium in charge of managing the Galileo Information Center (GIC) for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean, offered this course to contribute to the dissemination and promotion of the EU Space Programmes and encourage their use in Latin America. The main objective of the course was to present the existing systems of navigation and satellite positioning, emphasizing the European Galileo satellite system, technical characteristics of the system, software and receivers, as well as the opportunities for Mexico.
The course, open to students and the public interested in satellite navigation systems, lasted 40 hours and was taught online and in person by three doctors from UNAM, Dr. José Alberto Ramirez, Dr. Rafael Chávez Moreno and Dr. Jorge A. Ferrer Pérez, and had the collaboration of Dr. Miguel A. Salas Natera from the Polytechnic University of Madrid (UPM) and the coordinator of the Galileo Information Center, Ing. Elena Megias. The course was attended by more than 50 students from different faculties and of different nationalities, such as Mexico and Honduras.
The course consisted of 5 sessions in which satellite navigation systems and the European system, Galileo, were described. During the course topics such as the characteristics of the GNSS and especially the Galileo system were addressed. The fundamentals of positioning and sources of error were also discussed.
This course was intended to give visibility to the new technological developments that have to do with the different industrial sectors that make use of global constellations for positioning. By the end of the course, students will have a solid foundation in GNSS systems to complement their skills.
Also note that along the course, the floor was given to the attendees to be able to hear first-hand their ideas and proposals on the use of GNSS for the countries of the region. Some of the topics that were discussed were related to space junk, satellite self-guiding, GNSS precision in smartphone games and the tracking of certain animals during their migration periods.