Japanese conglomerate SoftBank is set to provide autonomous vehicle (AV) manufacturers in Japan with real-time kinematic (RTK), centimeter-accurate satellite positioning services from the end of November 2019.
The nationwide roll-out of the service will begin in July, with SofBank conducting trials in partnership with Yanmar Agribusiness, Kajima Corporation and SB Drive Corporation to achieve commercialization in different industries.
The service uses signals received from global navigation satellite systems (GNSS) such as a Quasi-Zenith Satellite System (QZSS) to conduct RTK positioning with centimeter-level accuracy.
SoftBank will utilize its nationwide base stations used for mobile communications to install more than 3,300 unique control points that are necessary for RTK positioning.
The Positioning Core System provided by ALES Corporation, a SoftBank subsidiary, will generate correctional data based on signals received and transmitted by SoftBank’s own control points, and this correctional data will be sent to agricultural and construction machinery, self-driving cars, drones and other equipment embedded with GNSS receivers.