The 2018 weeklong African Geodetic Reference Frame (AFREF) and Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) data processing training workshop will end today at the Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD).
Establishment of African Geodetic Reference Frame (AFREF)
Due to the lack of a uniform geodetic reference system in Africa, which makes cross border maps incompatible, and sharing of map information difficult, the African Geodetic Reference Frame (AFREF) project was initiated by the United Nations for Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) in 2005 to overcome the difficulties. When fully implemented, AFREF will consist of a network of CORS such that a user anywhere in Africa would have free access to the generated data.
Delivery of Course, Objectives and Participants
The course is conducted by RCMRD and supported by Trimble, CHC, Leica, ComNav Technology, Optron, Oakar Services, and Measurement Systems Limited. Establishment of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) and Modern Geodetic Reference GNSS Data Processing training workshop started 10-14th September, 2018. The course is being attended by Land Surveyors, Geodesists, Geologists, Cartographers, Meteorologists, Geophysicists, Engineers, and Earth Research Scientists from RCMRD member States and beyond.
The main objective is to build the required technical capacity to implement modern Geodetic Reference Frame in RCMRD member States. It will also provide technical skills in the establishment of AFREF and National Real Time GNSS Networks, installation of CORS, handling, dissemination and processing of GNSS data. It is designed to provide practical skills in setting up Continuous Operating GNSS Reference Stations, processing of GNSS data and operationalization of AFREF project.
The topics to cover include instrumental set up, observation requirements and planning, geodetic network design, and data processing methods. Other topics include: AFREF Concepts and progress; Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Technologies; Establishment of Continuously Operating GNSS Reference Systems (CORS), and National Real Time GNSS Networks (NRTN); GNSS Augmentation Systems and Availability in Africa; Reference systems, AFREF, datum and Coordinate systems & transformations; Practical field work on Static GNSS surveys, RTK surveys using Base/Rover, and RTK surveys using CORS as well as Practical GNSS data post processing and reporting using open source software.
Opening of Training and highlights from opening Address:
The workshop was opened by RCMRD Director General Dr. Emmanuel Nkurunziza who is also a land surveyor. He said, “It gives me great pleasure to join you to officially open this training workshop on AFREF and GNSS Data Processing. I am informed that the course is attended by Technical officers of National Mapping Organizations and Universities from RCMRD member States namely Botswana, Burundi, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Kenya, Lesotho, Mauritius, Malawi, Namibia, Rwanda, Sudan, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.”
He highlighted the importance of the training workshop and the AFREF initiative to the socio-economic development and wellbeing of the African people, and stressed the importance of keeping abreast of new technologies. "At the Centre, our role is work with you to use new surveying technology. Land surveying has undergone a lot of changes over the centuries, but perhaps not as rapidly as within the last 20 years. The introduction of global positioning systems and robotic technology have had a strong influence on the how surveyors actually do their jobs."
Dr. Nkurunziza added that new technology has made the surveying practice a much quicker process. “Technology is changing land surveying as the equipment becomes more sophisticated and capable. GPS, for example, allows a surveyor to use satellite and the Real-Time Network for improved accuracy across kilometres of land. Even as the technology has reduced the number of workers needed per survey job, the profession still is experiencing a deficiency of survey specialists.”
The DG added that “The use of a unified geodetic reference frame is the only way to achieve efficient and effective decision making, planning, development and management of our resources. They require fundamental map information collected and maintained in a systematic approach covering the entire region.”
Vendors participating in 2018 AFREF and GNSS data processing Training
Trimble products are used in over 141 countries around the world. With Trimble’s Geospatial solutions—sensors, field applications, real-time communications, field and back office processing, modelling, and analytics—you get the most progressive tools in precision technology. World-leading solutions that let you make your mark with permanence. After all, your work is your legacy. https://www.trimble.com/
CHC Headquartered in Shanghai, CHC manufactures competitive, affordable and reliable GPS and GNSS receivers and provides complete positioning solutions for surveying, construction, GIS and marine applications in more than 100 countries. www.chcnav.com
Leica Geosystems is known for premium products and innovative solution development, professionals in a diverse mix of industries, such as aerospace and defence, safety and security, construction, and manufacturing, trust Leica Geosystems for all their geospatial needs. With precise and accurate instruments, sophisticated software, and trusted services, Leica Geosystems delivers value every day to those shaping the future of our world. https://leica-geosystems.com/
ComNav Technology Ltd. develops and manufactures multi-constellation, multi-frequency GNSS measurement engine boards and receivers for ultimate high precision positioning applications. It is the very first Chinese company to develop, design and produce combined GNSS boards. With its fast-paced business growth, ComNav Technology is making waves in the global high-precision GNSS industry. www.comnavtech.com
OPTRON supplies and supports products in most countries across sub-Saharan Africa, directly and indirectly with the assistance of a select network of re-sellers and agents. Our solutions integrate a wide range of positioning technologies including GPS, laser, optical and inertial technologies, coupled with the latest application software and wireless communication technologies. https://optron.com/
Oakar Services is Eastern Africa’s leading geospatial consulting firm helping to deliver spatial solutions that enable our clients to become high-performing businesses. Working from a central office in Nairobi’s Upper Hill, Oakar Services operates in the Eastern Africa region through a business partner network. https://osl.co.ke/
Measurement systems limited is a leading supplier of innovative measurement products, positioning solutions, equipment in the fields of surveying, mapping, engineering, construction, weather, water and Medical. We are also the country’s, Eastern and Southern Africa leading distributor of Pentax, FOIF, KQGEO, ComNav, Slagen, Beijing NavTech & Mileseey corporations, all of which are developers and manufacturers of measuring and positioning products. http://www.measurementsystems.org/