The Universal Positioning System (UPS) is a series of comm buoys created by members of the Galactic Senate which transmit signals to create star charts for starships to use. They are clustered around claimed star systems and are spaced about one light-year apart and are powered by solar energy. There are countless comm buoys spread throughout the charted regions of the Milky Way, making the UPS possible.
Buoys transmit messages near instantaneously via tachyon accelerators. However, these buoys also have more than one quadrillion users and have limited bandwidth. As a result, buoys also have set priorities regarding the type of transmissions. Military or government transmissions have a greater priority over civilian transmissions. Most governments and militaries have set up their own limited systems of buoys to allow for their own systems of encryption and message protection for more sensitive transmissions.
The primary use of the UPS is to transmit messages and provide star maps. The UPS is also used to broadcast holovision as well as providing extranet capabilities to all charted systems. Star maps are regularly updated by a Senate task force made up of survey vessels from the major three member nations.