Topcon provides free access to GNSS services to emergency response agencies in California
In response to recent disaster declarations throughout California, Topcon Positioning Systems is offering free access to its global navigation satellite system (GNSS) correction services network to essential emergency response agencies and personnel in designated disaster areas. GNSS receivers are used for construction and surveying work, geographic information system (GIS) mapping done by utilities and public works organizations, and others engaged in infrastructure assessment and building.
Beginning January 8, 2023, the state of California has been stricken with multiple severe weather events. Caused by atmospheric rivers, bomb cyclones, and other severe winter storms have resulted in emergency conditions throughout the state, including catastrophic flash floods as well as mud and debris slides.
"During major disaster response and recovery, local utilities and municipalities, local FEMA and Army Corps of Engineers, essential emergency services such as utility and construction companies have to go out and find out what's broken, what's been wiped out, and they need the ability to utilize positioning technology," says Jason Killpack, director of business development and emerging business at Topcon Positioning Systems. "The challenge for a lot of these companies, services, and agencies that come into disaster areas is they don't have any of the local maps to know where the benchmarks are. If they find a benchmark or control point, they don't know what the local coordinate values are. Topnet Live offers all constellation correction services that any commercial GNSS receiver – regardless of brand – can utilize to gain a corrected position. It doesn't have to be a Topcon receiver."
The emergency Topnet Live subscriptions will be active for 90 days and will support any brand of dual-frequency GNSS equipment that can use Topcon's standard NTRIP correction message (RTCM 3.x). Topcon and its distributors will manage these subscriptions as a service for essential agencies to aid in the assessment of damages and start the rebuilding process.
"We're headquartered in California, and we want to help take care of our home state in a time of crisis," says Killpack. "We will offer these correction services free of charge through this emergency subscription service to anybody that needs them, regardless of who they work for, what kind of equipment they have, and for the next 90 days they can connect to our network to get the corrections they need to get their essential job done."
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