Pulsar-based “GPS” for interplanetary navigation

Over on Selenian Boondocks there’s a neat post about the X-ray Pulsar Positioning System (XPPS), a system proposed by Microcosm as a GPS-equivalent for interplanetary navigation. I’ve often wondered about this problem: GPS on Earth requires satellites orbiting the planet, so what methods can one use for accurately determining position if there aren’t GPS satellites around? The solution Microcosm is researching (with NASA funding) is to use the natural high-precision repeating signals from X-Ray pulsars to determine location. I’d love to see something like that work, and am curious about what sort of accuracy they can get.
On a related note, I created a new category, “Space/Interplanetary Robotics” for this post. I was tempted to just create a “Space” category, but considering how infatuated I am with spaceflight, I think I’m going to try to refrain from general Space postings. Otherwise, my intention for this blog could end up deviating pretty quickly…

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