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Quiz: 6 Questions To See How Well You Understand GPS Navigation

Thanks to Bose for making this story possible. Check out the full series here. And if you want to know why we fly with Bose, learn more about their headsets here.
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There's a lot more to GPS navigation than hitting direct-to...


  1. 1) In order for your GPS to gather position and altitude information, how many satellites need to be in view at all times?

    GPS receivers need 4 satellites in view to get an accurate position and altitude. 

    GPS receivers need 4 satellites in view to get an accurate position and altitude. 

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  2. 2) Your examiner asks you what RAIM is, so you tell him...

    Receiver Autonomous Integrity Monitoring is a system that monitors the integrity of signals transmitted from satellites to determine if they are reliable or not.

    Receiver Autonomous Integrity Monitoring is a system that monitors the integrity of signals transmitted from satellites to determine if they are reliable or not.

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  3. 3) How many satellites are required for RAIM to detect a bad satellite and continue navigation (excluding baro-aiding) in the event of a failed satellite?

    A minimum of 5 satellites is required to detect a bad satellite. At least 6 satellites are required to detect and exclude a bad satellite from the navigation solution if your receiver has a fault detection and exclusion (FDE) RAIM capability.

    A minimum of 5 satellites is required to detect a bad satellite. At least 6 satellites are required to detect and exclude a bad satellite from the navigation solution if your receiver has a fault detection and exclusion (FDE) RAIM capability.

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  4. 4) What is baro-aiding?

    Baro-aiding, as stated in the Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge, "is a method of augmenting the GPS integrity solution by using a nonsatellite input source." In other words, using an external source (barometric altimeter) to crosscheck and improve the integrity of the GPS system.

    Baro-aiding, as stated in the Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge, "is a method of augmenting the GPS integrity solution by using a nonsatellite input source." In other words, using an external source (barometric altimeter) to crosscheck and improve the integrity of the GPS system.

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  5. 5) Describe the baseline GPS satellite constellation...

    According to the Pilots Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge, the baseline satellite constellation is composed of 24 total satellites, with 6 orbital planes. Within each orbital plane, 4 satellites exist with an extra slot of an additional satellite.

    According to the Pilots Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge, the baseline satellite constellation is composed of 24 total satellites, with 6 orbital planes. Within each orbital plane, 4 satellites exist with an extra slot of an additional satellite.

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  6. 6) How many total satellites could be included in the baseline satellite constellation if needed?

    Since each orbital plane includes and extra slot, that would be 6 extra satellites. That would make a grand total of 30 satellites.

    Since each orbital plane includes and extra slot, that would be 6 extra satellites. That would make a grand total of 30 satellites.

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Well, that could have gone better...

You scored %. Time for some studying.

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That was a little bumpy...

You scored %. Time for a quick refresher.

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Nailed it!

You scored %. Good job.

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What are pilots saying about their Bose headsets? Find out and learn more here.


Corey Komarec

Corey is an Embraer 175 First Officer for a regional airline. He graduated as an aviation major from the University of North Dakota, and he's been flying since he was 16. You can reach him at corey@boldmethod.com.

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