Ginan: Analysis Centre Software

Geoscience Australia has developed an open-source Analysis Centre Software GNSS toolkit to process real-time geodetic data and deliver positioning, navigation and timing (PNT) services to Australians. This capability is called Ginan.

An alpha version of Ginan can be accessed through its page on GitHub (Ginan 1.0.0). This software will be progressively updated with new functionality.

This capability will enable positioning accurate to within 5 cm or better, when a user has access to equipment that can obtain a precise carrier phase observation and internet connection to access the positioning products.

This toolkit will manage the acquisition, processing and delivery of multi-GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite Systems) data and related products and enable precise positioning for more consumer-ready applications.

Users have access to open-source software and products that enhance the accuracy of positioning. Industry, innovators and system integrators can use this system to develop new products and applications that use precise positioning, delivering the benefits to their customers and to the Australian public.

The software is currently under development. In 2022, a production version of the software will be made available as an open source. This will be in addition to Geoscience Australia’s existing real-time precise point positioning product files and correction streams.

About Ginan, the Analysis Centre Software

The Ginan Analysis Centre Software GNSS toolkit is being developed by Geoscience Australia, in partnership with Industry and several universities.

Ginan will help keep track of multi-GNSS performance over Australia, enable production of the positioning products to realise the full benefit of the navigation systems that operate in our region, and help the development of the next generation of geodetic datums.

The Analysis Centre Software is a fully open-source software toolkit. Users will be able to download and use the software as a whole, or download and customise certain elements to meet specific needs.

The software will:

  • promote Australia’s unique modelling and analyses systems for multi-GNSS processing in real-time and deliver precise positioning products to the Australian and International PNT community,
  • support expert advice on navigation system performance over Australia,
  • provide a state-of-art GNSS analysis toolset to universities and research organisations, to enable Australia to lead the development of geospatial technology.

By making the software open-source, Geoscience Australia is:

  • Supporting GNSS education by allowing students and researchers to examine how the Analysis Centre Software algorithms work to solve complex problems,
  • Enabling researchers and commercial organisations to use the software to solve research or commercial problems.

The interoperable nature of the software will allow and encourage users to develop innovative position-dependent technology and services that will be of economic benefit to Australia. This will grow the market for equipment manufacturers, technology integrators, service providers, the science community and end users and enable them to realise the full benefits of GNSS.

How to get access

You can access the open source software and the products (files and correction messages) in real-time to enable precise point positioning.

The Alpha version of the software is available under an open source licence from Github.

Further development work is ongoing with further releases in 2022. If you would like to stay informed about developments, you can subscribe to Positioning News, which is Geoscience Australia’s regular email newsletter. We will keep subscribers informed about progress with the software, and beta testers may be requested through this channel.

How it works

GNSS satellites have to operate in a dynamic and complex space environment and their positioning and timing signals have to pass through the atmosphere to be received on Earth. The systems within the satellite, the space environment and the atmosphere all affect the satellite signal which means that positions determined by receivers on the ground come with a potential error. Uncorrected signals are only accurate to 5–10 metres.

The Analysis Centre Software GNSS toolkit Ginan may be thought of as a “super GNSS data processor”. It applies models of the Earth’s gravity (Earth tides) and Ionosphere, in order to create corrections for potential errors.

The software takes signal data from many satellites and constellations and combines it with predictions from the models to create a correction signal. When applied with GNSS receiver, this signal can increase the accuracy of a calculated position reliably to within a few centimetres.