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US GPS Focus Must Be Existing Service, GPSIA Asks NIST

Technology mandates can stifle innovation and often are ineffective at addressing GPS service disruptions, the GPS Innovation Alliance commented to the National Institute for Standards and Technology. Only "vigorous enforcement" can keep illegal GPS jammers out of the hands of those wanting to use the technology for bad behavior, GPSIA said Monday. NIST is probing use of positioning, navigation and timing (PNT) services. The GPS industry supports exploring solutions to ways GPS signals can be threatened, though those solutions done in concert with the federal government require big development over time and the federal government needs to ensure its resources continue to be principally focused on maintaining and improving the existing system, GPSIA said. Global Navigation Satellite System signals are "obviously vulnerable" to jamming, ionospheric delay, poor satellite visibility in locations such as tunnels and parking garages, and the risk of errors in the signals themselves, the Alliance for Automotive Innovation said. It advocated standards and practices for validating, authenticating and verifying PNT signals. It said to prevent signal spoofing, consideration should be given to authenticating the civilian GPS signal, and authenticated ground-based PNT should be available to supplement and back up satellite-based GPS.