Washington View

November 27, 2017

Ligado: Business and Network Plan Remain Unclear

A highly anticipated presentation by Ligado Networks to the nation’s leading satellite navigation experts took an unexpected turn when the company said it could not provide essential network information because it was looking to the government for technical direction and its business plans were still in flux.

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By Dee Ann Divis
April 1, 2017

Ligado Test Results Roll In

Figures and Charts

The GPS community and Virginia-based Ligado are weighing new and upcoming test results as the standoff over interference with satellite navigation services enters its seventh year.

The dispute centers on the company’s now modified proposal to build a terrestrial wireless network supported by frequencies originally allocated for satellites. Though there had been a move some years earlier to augment the satellite services with ground stations the company’s first plan envisioned some 30,000 high-powered ground terminals.

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By Dee Ann Divis
January 24, 2017

GPS Roundup: Congress Reopens for Business

Washington has seen a lot of transitions, so even amidst political controversy it’s generally business as usual.

For the GPS community that business, at least in the near term, will likely center on changes in federal leadership — with many key appointments, like a new Secretary of the Air Force, still to be determined. In addition — even at this early stage when new lawmakers are still trying to find their offices — there are issues and opportunities worth watching in emerging legislation.

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By Dee Ann Divis
December 24, 2016

Defense Authorization Bill Signals Full GPS Funding, Pushes GPS Back-Up

Yesterday (December 23, 2016) President Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2017, a $619-billion bill with a number of provisions affecting satellite navigation.

The legislation (S. 2943) fully authorizes the administration’s requests for all the elements of the GPS program — and signals indirectly that appropriators eventually will provide comparable support — although the NDAA does put additional requirements on those developing the new GPS ground system.

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By Dee Ann Divis
November 30, 2016

How Will GNSS Fare Under a Trump Administration?

With the Republican Party now entirely in charge of Washington’s prime policy real estate the neighborhood is going to change. The current residents are warily watching the newcomers take measurements for a major remodel of agencies, lobbying rules, national priorities, and international relationships, and everyone is assessing the implications of the new landscape.

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By Dee Ann Divis
September 16, 2016

Defeating ‘Death by GPS’

Park rangers in Death Valley National Park have begun calling it “death by GPS.” Visitors faithfully following their navigation devices turn down the wrong road or hike away from help and die before rangers can reach them.

But it really isn’t the GPS, it’s the maps in their navigation system’s database.

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By Dee Ann Divis
July 17, 2016

Air Force Backs GPS OCX as Temporary Shutdown Looms

The Air Force is defending the new GPS ground system, taking a stand against naysayers in Congress and declaring through its actions an intent to stick with the Next Generation Operational Control System program (OCX) — at least for now.

The most public of these actions occurred June 30 when Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James announced OCX would surpass by at least 25 percent the program’s estimated cost. She declared a critical Nunn-McCurdy breach, putting the program on a path to automatic cancellation.

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By Dee Ann Divis