Inmarsat awarded Royal Institute of Navigation medal

The Inmarsat team that worked on the search for the missing Malaysian airliner MH370 has been awarded the prestigious Michael Richey Medal by the Royal Institute of Navigation.

The annual award honours the authors of the best paper published in the Journal of Navigation, and The Search for MH370 by Chris Ashton, Inmarsat Director of Spectrum Engineering; Alan Schuster Bruce, Inmarsat Manager of Aeronautical Product Engineering; Gary Colledge, Inmarsat Manager, Aero Safety Services, and Mark Dickinson, Inmarsat Vice President, Satellite Operations, is the winner of the 2015 accolade.

HRH The Duke of Edinburgh presented the team with the Michael Richey Medal at the awards ceremony at the Royal Geographical Society headquarters in London.

‘Ping’ data

The work involved the analysis of the ‘ping’ data recorded from the Inmarsat Classic Aero system, which continued to operate for several hours after the ground lost primary radar contact with the aircraft.

As media interest in the complex analysis of the timing and frequency characteristics of the signals grew, the Inmarsat team decided to publish the analysis in a technical journal article to act as a formal public record of the work.

Following its publication, both in the Royal Institute of Navigation’s quarterly journal and as an Open Source research document online, the article has been downloaded over 100,000 times from the RIN website making it the most widely distributed journal article in its history.