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Galileo, GPS find way to cooperate

Europe has persuaded the US to accept competition for Global Positioning System, the satellite-based geographic place-finder and navigation system. This opens a commercial lifeline to Galileo, the EU's financially-troubled competitor to GPS.

The US and EU yesterday agreed to use an improved design for their respective Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) signals. The signals will be implemented on the Galileo Open Service and the GPS IIIA new civil signal.

The new signals will provide greater positional precision, better reception and greater coverage from any GPS or Galileo satellite, thanks to a 2004 deal to ensure compatibility and interoperability at the user level.

The deal is expected to accelerate development of geography-based information systems.

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