Browse Definitions :
Definition

Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS)

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) is a navigation assistance system used to improve the accuracy and precision of global positioning systems (GPS).

WAAS is mainly used in aviation to improve the location-tracking abilities of aircraft. Those abilities are especially important in landing approaches. WAAS helps aircraft land safely, particularly in low-visibility situations.

The signals from GPS are subject to a number of sources of interference that reduce accuracy. Interference from the ionosphere, the atmosphere and satellite orbit errors are common sources of GPS drift. Combining with a ground-level technology to augment GPS satellites’ accuracy can mitigate these factors.

The equipment involved in WAAS is a mixture of satellites and ground stations. A number of stations gather the data across the United States. Two coastal main stations output the corrected signal for relay through satellites. These satellites then provide a corrected GPS signal that makes GPS positioning more accurate. No additional receiving equipment is necessary.

The first GPSs were accurate to 100 meters. GPS without selective availability (SA) restrictions improved accuracy to 15 meters and differential GPS improved accuracy to within 3-5 meters. WAAS is designed to improve accuracy below three meters more than 95 percent of the time. WAAS works best without obstructions and is suited to open areas like plains and the ocean as mountains and other large obstructions can reduce accuracy.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Department of Transportation (DOT) still have WAAS under development. Currently, the system is only available in North America. Other nations’ equivalent technologies include the Japanese Multi-Functional Satellite Augmentation System (MSAS) and European Euro Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS).

This was last updated in November 2017

Continue Reading About Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS)

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

SearchCompliance

  • risk management

    Risk management is the process of identifying, assessing and controlling threats to an organization's capital and earnings.

  • compliance as a service (CaaS)

    Compliance as a Service (CaaS) is a cloud service service level agreement (SLA) that specified how a managed service provider (...

  • data protection impact assessment (DPIA)

    A data protection impact assessment (DPIA) is a process designed to help organizations determine how data processing systems, ...

SearchSecurity

  • spyware

    Spyware is a type of malicious software -- or malware -- that is installed on a computing device without the end user's knowledge.

  • application whitelisting

    Application whitelisting is the practice of specifying an index of approved software applications or executable files that are ...

  • botnet

    A botnet is a collection of internet-connected devices, which may include PCs, servers, mobile devices and internet of things ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • business continuity plan (BCP)

    A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that consists of the critical information an organization needs to continue ...

  • disaster recovery team

    A disaster recovery team is a group of individuals focused on planning, implementing, maintaining, auditing and testing an ...

  • cloud insurance

    Cloud insurance is any type of financial or data protection obtained by a cloud service provider. 

SearchStorage

  • DRAM (dynamic random access memory)

    Dynamic random access memory (DRAM) is a type of semiconductor memory that is typically used for the data or program code needed ...

  • RAID 10 (RAID 1+0)

    RAID 10, also known as RAID 1+0, is a RAID configuration that combines disk mirroring and disk striping to protect data.

  • PCIe SSD (PCIe solid-state drive)

    A PCIe SSD (PCIe solid-state drive) is a high-speed expansion card that attaches a computer to its peripherals.

Close