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December 18, 2012

GPS Coalition to FCC: LightSquared’s Requests Must Not Come at Expense of Critical Services

A GPS advocacy group has urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), as it considers expansion of terrestrial use of the mobile satellite spectrum (MSS) adjacent to GPS, to recognize that expansion “not come at the expense of critical GPS services.”

December 17, 2012

Meet the New European GNSS Agency: Much the Same, Only Different

Coming nearly full circle and yet ending up in a new place with a new name describes the peculiar fortunes of the European GNSS Agency, an unlikely fate perhaps reflected most clearly in its continued use of its predecessor’s acronym, GSA.

Five years ago when Europe’s GNSS program abandoned its seemingly misconceived and now roundly condemned effort to forge a public-private partnership (PPP) to develop Galileo, the original GSA — the Galileo Supervisory Authority — appeared orphaned, bereft of purpose and patrons.

December 11, 2012

London Conference Beats Drum for Galileo Acceptance

The third Galileo in-orbit validation (IOV) satellite, also known as Flight Model 3 (FM), began transmitting signals last week, and the FM4 spacecraft, like the FM3 launched on October 12, is expected to come on-line soon — providing the theoretical capability of 3D positioning using solely satellites of Europe’s GNSS system.

November 30, 2012

House Panel Suggests Harm Threshold Rather Than Receiver Standards

Members of a key technical advisory group told members of Congress this week that a more creative use of interference limits was preferable to setting receiver standards as the way to expand the use of scarce spectrum.

Although the committee focus was on communication devices in general, the issue of GPS receivers and the recent controversy involving LightSquared’s proposed ground-based wireless broadband service.

November 29, 2012

U.S. Space-Based PNT Executive Leadership to Change

A top leadership change is under way at one of the most important U.S. GPS policy and management organizations, the National Space-Based Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) Coordination Office (NCO).

Anthony (Tony) Russo, who has served as NCO director for the past three years — and as deputy director for two years before that, has accepted a new position with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

November 28, 2012

DoT Gives GPS Spectrum Protection Team Award

The GPS Spectrum Protection Team has received the U.S. Department of Transportation (DoT) Partnering for Excellence Award for outstanding performance in support of the government and industry-wide assessment of potential impacts to GPS operations and safety.

The spectrum protection team played an important role in responding to the proposed LightSquared wireless broadband system’s spectrum plan.

November 17, 2012

They’re Back: LightSquared Tries New Route to Wireless Broadband, Later for Nearby GPS Band

With the election finally over, and the chain of decision makers now largely clear, the spectrum war between LightSquared and the GPS community is heating up again with new fronts opening at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Congress.

The focus of the action are changes to rules governing spectrum and receivers that, if enacted, could enable LightSquared to move forward with its plans for a high-powered, terrestrial broadband network.

November 16, 2012

GSA, French Officials Break Ground on Galileo Security Monitoring Center

European officials broke ground today (November 16, 2012) at the site of the primary Galileo Security Monitoring Center (GSMC) in Saint Germain en Laye outside Paris.

The GSMC — the future heart of Galileo program security — will be responsible for several major tasks including overall management of Galileo system security, management of the Public Regulated Service (PRS) access, command and control of European GNSS in accordance with the European Unions Joint Action principle, and provision of PRS and GNSS security expertise and analysis

November 14, 2012

Long-Awaited Compass-BeiDou ICD May Appear by End of This Year

China finally appears ready to issue a comprehensive document providing specifications for the Compass/BeiDou-2 open signal in space, which should enable non-Chinese manufacturers to build complete Compass receivers.

November 11, 2012

GLONASS Chief Designer Dismissed, Resigns as Director of JSC Russian Space Systems

[Updated November 23] Yuri Urlichich has been dismissed from his post as general designer of the GLONASS satellite navigation system, according to Russian news media reports.

The decision was made by the Russian military-industrial commission, which is headed by Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin.

Two weeks later, on November 23, Urlichich cited illness and resigned as director general of JSC Russian Space Systems, which contributes to the operation of a number of the nation’s leading space programs in addition to GLONASS.

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