Pentagon Calls Interference on LightSquared
Government military and transportation officials are reportedly calling for a "comprehensive review" of the possibility that LightSquared 's LTE network could interfere with GPS satellite transmissions.
The request, related to LightSquared's proposed terrestrial 4G network in the L-Band, came to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) from Deputy Defense Department Secretary William J. Lynn and Transportation Department Deputy Secretary John Porcari, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday. The FCC previously told LightSquared to work with GPS providers to undertake a study to ensure that there is no interference to the satellite positioning transmissions. The first report was submitted to the FCC on March 11. The process is supposed to be completed by June 11.
The issue is that the LightSquared L-Band LTE network broadcasts in the band next to the one in which GPS receivers get positioning data broadcast from satellites.
The fear is that the GPS receivers will pick up interference from the L-Band network, since signals from a terrestrial LTE cell site, particularly in a dense environment like a city deployment, will be much stronger than the signals the receiver is tuned to grab from satellites.
Jeff Carlisle, executive vice president for regulatory affairs and public policy at LightSquared, told LR Mobile in January that LightSquared needs to work with the industry to see which GPS equipment needs "filtering so that they don't look into our band."
Why this matters The operator is still expecting to launch its initial LTE services in the third quarter of 2011. Clearly, bad news from these GPS studies could put a damper on that launch date.
For more Keeping up on the latest from LightSquared:
- FCC Lets LightSquared Pass 'Go'
- LightSquared Confident in Q3 Launch Schedule
- LightSquared Files First Report to FCC
- LightSquared Gets Satellite-Ready
— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile