UK Protests U.S. Loran Termination Plan

 - April 29, 2009, 5:13 AM

The removal in February of Loran-C and eLoran funding from President Obama’s proposed budget has drawn strong protest from the UK over the sudden U.S. policy reversal. Last year, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security stated, in regard to protecting critical national infrastructures, that Loran-C “will mitigate any safety, security or economic effects of a GPS outage or disruption.” And in January, a high-level DOT panel of independent experts–chaired by Dr. Bradford Parkinson, who earlier directed the USAF development of GPS–unanimously recommended that “the U.S. government complete the eLoran upgrade and commit to eLoran as the national backup to GPS for 20 years.” The eLoran offers Loran-C’s long range, coupled with higher accuracy and GPS-like “all-in-view” operation. U.S. industry observers suggest that, unless withdrawn, the Obama Administration’s action, which appears to lack technical justification, risks undermining international trust in previously accepted U.S. leadership in world navigation policy.