LightSquared Causes ‘Substantial Interference’ to GPS

 - June 9, 2011, 11:30 AM

“The test data discussed today makes clear that there is substantial interference to GPS if LightSquared turns on high-powered terrestrial facilities in the spectrum next door to GPS,” Trimble vice president and general counsel Jim Kirkland said today at an event sponsored by the National Space-Based PNT Advisory Board. Kirkland is also a founding member of the Coalition to Save Our GPS. In at least one test, LightSquared failed to deliver test equipment that matches its proposed operations, thus causing optimistic results that still nonetheless showed interference with GPS. “The data confirms what the industry told the FCC before it granted the waiver, and also confirms that there is no viable technical fix,” Kirkland said. “It’s time for the FCC to stop squandering resources trying to find a solution to an unfixable problem.” Instead, he said the agency should focus efforts on finding an alternate spectrum where LightSquared can operate but won’t interfere with GPS. “When it comes to broadband and GPS, it’s not an either/or situation–the United States can and should have both. LightSquared says it has another spectrum and it should use it,” he said. A joint industry report on LightSquared is due to the FCC next Wednesday, to be followed immediately by a public comment period before the agency makes its final decision.