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North Up Orientation
Fixes the GPS receiver’s map display so north is always fixed at the top of the screen.
A Garmin-proprietary feature that allows the user to move the pointer and pan a track in either direction, then select a location along the track to start a TracBack® or GoTo, or to mark a waypoint.
Parallel Channel Receiver
A continuous tracking receiver using multiple receiver circuits to track more than one satellite simultaneously.
The precise code of the GPS signal typically used only by the U.S. military. It is encrypted and reset every seven days to prevent use from unauthorized persons.
A single display element on an LCD screen. The more pixels, the higher the resolution and definition.
An exact, unique location based on a geographic coordinate system.
Position Fix

The GPS receiver's computed position coordinates.
Position Format
The way in which the GPS receiver's position will be displayed on the screen. Commonly displayed as latitude/longitude in degrees and minutes, with options for degrees, minutes and seconds, degrees only, or one of several grid formats.
Prime Meridian
The zero meridian, used as a reference line from which longitude east and west is measured. It passes through Greenwich, England.
Pseudo-Random Code
The identifying signature signal transmitted by each GPS satellite and mirrored by the GPS receiver in order to separate and retrieve the signal from background noise.
The measured distance between the GPS receiver and the GPS satellite using uncorrected time comparisons from satellite-transmitted code and the local receiver's reference code.
Quadrifilar Helix Antenna
A type of GPS antenna in which four spiraling elements form the receiving surface of the antenna. For GPS use, quadrifilar antennas are typically half-wavelength or quarter-wavelength size and encased in a plastic cylinder for durability.
A serial input/output standard that allows for compatibility between data communication equipment made by various manufacturers.
Radio Technical Commission For Maritime Services (RTCM) Special Committee 104
A committee created for the purposes of establishing standards and guidance for interfacing between radio beacon-based data links and GPS receivers, and to provide standards for ground-based differential GPS stations.
Receiver Autonomous Integrity Monitoring; A GPS receiver system that would allow the receiver to detect incorrect signals being transmitted by the satellites by comparing solutions with different sets of satellites.
A group of waypoints entered into the GPS receiver in the sequence you desire to navigate them.
See Selective Availability.
Search The Sky
A message shown when a GPS receiver is gathering satellite almanac data. This data tells the GPS receiver where to look for each GPS satellite.
Serial Communication
The sequential transmission of the signal elements of a group representing a character or other entity of data. The characters are transmitted in a sequence over a single line, rather than simultaneously over two or more lines, as in parallel transmission. The sequential elements may be transmitted with or without interruption.
See-Thru® Technology
A Garmin exclusive technology which allows the various Garmin fishfinders to hear both weak and strong signals simultaneously so as to identify fish returns under the toughest conditions: suspended in thermoclines or even hiding near structures.
Selective Availability (SA)
The random error, which the government can intentionally add to GPS signals, so that their accuracy for civilian use is degraded. SA is not currently in use.
See Speed Over Ground.
A system using transmitted and reflected underwater sound waves to detect and locate submerged objects or measure the distance to the floor of a body of water. This technology is used in Garmin fishfinders and sounder products.
Space Segment
The satellite portion of the complete GPS system.
Speed Over Ground (SOG)
The actual speed the GPS unit is moving over the ground. This may differ from airspeed or nautical speed due to such things as head winds or sea conditions. For example, a plane that is going 120 knots into a 10-knot head wind will have a SOG of 110 knots.
Spread Spectrum
The received GPS signal is wide bandwidth and low power. The L-band signal is modulated with a pseudo-random noise code to spread the signal energy over a much wider bandwidth than the signal information bandwidth. This provides the ability to receive all satellites unambiguously and to give some resistance to noise and multipath.
Statute Mile
A unit of length equal to 5,280 feet or 1,760 yards (1,609 meters) used in the U.S. and some other English-speaking countries.
Straight-Line Navigation
The act of going from one waypoint to another in the most direct line and with no turns.
  T - Z  

Time To First Fix (TTFF)
If you have not used your GPS unit for several months, the almanac data for the satellites may be out of date. The unit is capable of recollecting this information on its own, but the process can take several minutes. Time to First Fix (TTFF) is the time it takes a GPS receiver to find satellites after the user first turns it on (when the GPS receiver has lost memory or has been moved over 300 miles from its last location).
The proprietary Garmin feature which takes your current track log and converts it into a route to guide you back to a starting position.
Track Up Orientation
Fixes the GPS receiver’s map display so the current track heading is at the top of the screen.
Track (TRK)
Your current direction of travel relative to a ground position (same as Course Over Ground).
A device, much like a microphone, that converts input energy of one form into output energy of another. Fishfinders separate and enhance the information received from a transducer to show underwater objects.
A method of determining the location of an unknown point, as in GPS navigation, by using the laws of plane trigonometry.
See Track.
See Turn.
The lowest region of the atmosphere between the surface of the earth and the tropopause, characterized by decreasing temperature with increasing altitude. GPS signals travel through the troposphere (and other atmospheric layers).
True North
The direction of the north pole from your current position. Magnetic compasses indicate north differently due to the variation between true north and magnetic north. A GPS receiver can display headings referenced to true north or magnetic north.
See Time To First Fix.
Turn (TRN)
The degrees which must be added to or subtracted from the current heading to reach the course to the intended waypoint.
Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM)
A nearly worldwide coordinate projection system using north and east distance measurements from reference point(s). UTM is the primary coordinate system used on U.S. Geological Survey topographic maps.
A transmission path by which radio or other signals are sent from the ground to an aircraft or a communications satellite.
User Interface
The way in which information is exchanged between the GPS receiver and the user. This takes place through the screen display and buttons on the unit.
User Segment
The segment of the complete GPS system that includes the GPS receiver and operator.
See Coordinated Universal Time.
See Universal Transverse Mercator.
Velocity Made Good (VMG)
The rate of closure to a destination based upon your current speed and course.
See Wide Area Augmentation System.
Most Garmin GPS units are waterproof in accordance with IEC 529 IPX7. IEC 529 is a European system of test specification standards for classifying the degrees of protection provided by the enclosures of electrical equipment. An IPX7 designation means the GPS case can withstand accidental immersion in one meter of water for up to 30 minutes. An IPX8 designation is for continuous underwater use.
The distance between points of corresponding phase of two consecutive cycles of a wave.
Waypoints are locations or landmarks worth recording and storing in your GPS. These are locations you may later want to return to. They may be check points on a route or significant ground features. (e.g., camp, the truck, a fork in a trail, or a favorite fishing spot). Waypoints may be defined and stored in the unit manually by taking coordinates for the waypoint from a map or other reference. This can be done before ever leaving home. Or more usually, waypoints may be entered directly by taking a reading with the unit at the location itself, giving it a name, and then saving the point. Waypoints may also be put into the unit by referencing another waypoint already stored, giving the reference waypoint, and entering the distance and compass bearing to the new waypoint.
Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS)
A system of satellites and ground stations that provide GPS signal corrections for better position accuracy. A WAAS-capable receiver can give you a position accuracy of better than three meters, 95 percent of the time. (At this time, the system is still in the development stage and is not fully operational.) WAAS consists of approximately 25 ground reference stations positioned across the United States that monitor GPS satellite data. Two master stations, located on either coast, collect data from the reference stations and create a GPS correction message.
For more information, see What is WAAS?, or visit the FAA's website.
World Geodetic System, 1984. The primary map datum used by GPS. Secondary datums are computed as differences from the WGS 84 standard.
The encrypted P-Code.
See Crosstrack Error.

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