PulsarPlane:Worldwide Air Transport Operations (PULSARPLANE_GCAM)

Type: International Project

Duration: from 2013 Sep 01 to 2015 Feb 09

Financed by: European Commission

Prime Contractor: Stichting Nationaal Lucht-En Ruimtevaartlaboratorium (NLR (Other)

Pulsars are fast rotating neutron stars that emit electromagnetic radiation, which is received on earth as a series of very stable fast periodic pulses with periods in between 1,4 milliseconds and 8.5 seconds. These periodic pulses and the known positions (in celestial coordinates) of the neutron stars make them ideal beacons for navigation. We propose a new navigation system, based on the signals received from pulsars. Pulsar navigation enables a means of navigation without the need for ground-based or space-based equipment. The objective of this study is to investigate the feasibility of pulsar navigation for aviation, and if found positive, to analyse the impact on aviation and to identify and develop (sections of) the path towards a useable real-time navigation and timing system.


  • Aalto-Korkeakoulusaatio (Company) -Finland
  • Sofiiski Universitet Sveti Kliment Ohridsk (University) -Bulgaria
  • Stichting Nationaal Lucht-En Ruimtevaartlaboratorium (NLR (Other)
  • Technische Universitaet Delft (University) -Netherlands

Principal Investigators