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Stamp out time drift – Precision Time Protocol (PTP) is here

All data timestamped by one clock

From launch all OxTS INS next generation Inertial Navigation Systems will have the option to use PTP with compatible 3rd party devices.

Precision Timing Protocol (PTP) is a network-based time synchronisation protocol that is used to synchronise all clocks throughout a computer network. Enabling PTP with compatible devices will allow users to take advantage of the high-quality clock-source available with their next generation OxTS INS – GNSS.

By synchronising all clocks within a network, users can stamp out time drift and take advantage of a much simpler ethernet plug and play set-up.

Stamp out time drift

Time drift becomes an issue when there is more than one data acquisition system working in parallel – for example LiDAR and INS. Each system will have it’s own timing error, and over time this error will grow and create drift.

  • In a surveying environment, time drift can negatively impact pointclouds by making object recognition difficult, subsequently leading to blurring and double-vision.
  • For automotive engineers, when running campaigns, analysis of events within your data may be misaligned, making the analysis more difficult and/or less efficient.

Synchronising all clocks within a network to a single source (INS) will eliminate time drift and therefore produce clearer, more concise pointclouds and improve the clarity of automotive testing data.

PTP - Globe Image

Simple Setup - PPS vs PTP Image Comparison

By migrating from a traditional PPS hardware set-up, that involves connecting and wiring multiple cables, users can take advantage of an ethernet ‘plug-and-play solution.

This improved set-up gives surveyors and test engineers the ability to cut down the amount of time it takes to begin data collection and makes day-to-day use of the equipment much simpler and more efficient.

The following images compare an example PPS hardware set-up with a PTP enabled network.

Why use PTP?

PTP - Simple Set-Up Image

  • Make day-to-day use of survey equipment simpler and more efficient
  • Reduce time-to-survey
  • Stamp out time drift – improve object recognition and remove blurring and double-vision from pointclouds
  • Improve survey ROI
  • Streamline automotive testing
  • Improve the clarity of automotive testing results


Contact OxTS

With which OxTS devices is PTP available?

PTP can be enabled on all new OxTS next generation Inertial Navigation Systems.

The term ‘next generation’ relates to any v3 INS, the RT1003 and the new xNAV650.

Any older OxTS devices will need to be upgraded to next generation v3 devices to realise the benefits of PTP.

Any customer with OxTS v2 and v3 Inertial Navigation Systems can now also benefit from tri (v2) and quad (v3) constellation position accuracy.

Survey+ v3 INS

Already using an OxTS INS? - Upgrade to PTP

Stamp out time drift

To begin your upgrade please submit your contact details and your local OxTS distributor will be in touch to discuss your upgrade.

Please note that owners of older OxTS INS devices will need to upgrade to a v3 next generation device.

Alternatively, you can email your enquiry to

PTP Support

The following articles provide more details:

Additional supporting documentation regarding PTP is available on OxTS’ dedicated support site.

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