Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Government Agencies Report GPS Interference by LightSquared

Last Friday, a committee of nine federal agencies and Cabinet level departments submitted a letter to the NTIA concluding that LightSquared’s proposed network would cause harmful interference to GPS. Critically, the FAA has found that interference from LightSquared would impact aircraft safety systems. In conclusion, the government investigators state "there is no practical solutions or mitigations that would permit the LightSquared broadband service, as proposed, to operate in the next few months or years without significantly interfering with GPS.�?

For its part, LightSquared issued a press release condemning the report and saying the testing "was rigged by manufacturers of GPS receivers and government end users to produce bogus results, and revealed details of the testing to document its accusations." LightSquared believes the GPS industry insiders and government end users manipulated the latest round of tests to generate biased results. Among the questions that LightSquared raises concerning the transparency and independence of the testing:

Why did the government choose to ignore LightSquared's proposed power levels?

Why did the government choose a power level 32 times greater than the level at which LightSquared will operate?

Why did the test protocol select the 1dB degradation to noise as the interference standard, since it does not apply to general purpose GPS receivers and GPS units are typically designed with an 8dB level of tolerance?

Who determined what acceptable interference is for the current round of testing? What is that standard?http://www.lightsquared.com

See also