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Sat, Jul 16, 2011

AEA Encourages Members To Comment To FCC Regarding LightSquared

Comment Period Closes July 30, 2011

As a member of the Coalition to Save Our GPS, the Aircraft Electronics Association is encouraging its members to make comments to the Federal Communications Commission in response to LightSquared's proposed plan to offer wireless broadband services in radio frequency bands adjacent to those used by GPS receivers. The information below is provided by the Coalition to Save Our GPS and is helpful information to consider.

In January, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) conditionally allowed a company called LightSquared to offer wireless broadband services in radio frequency bands adjacent to those used by GPS receivers. Based on feedback from public and private sector GPS users, the FCC told LightSquared that it could not launch service until testing could be completed to determine the extent of the problems that LightSquared would cause. The report of that testing was submitted to the FCC on June 30, and it showed that there would be massive interference to GPS from LightSquared's proposed operations. The FCC has asked for feedback from the public on the report. Comments will be taken until Saturday, July 30.

AEA says that everyone who cares about GPS should let the FCC know about the threat that LightSquared poses. In writing to the FCC, we encourage you to cover the following points in your own words:

  • How you use GPS technology in your business and/or personal life.
  • What would happen to your business/personal life if GPS became unavailable or unreliable.
  • While more capacity for wireless broadband services is important, it should not come at the expense of GPS, which is critical to our country's economy.
  • The results of the testing that were performed at the FCC's request are conclusive -- they show that GPS reception would be wiped out by LightSquared's proposed service.
  • Now that the test results have shown interference to GPS, the FCC shouldn't allow LightSquared to keep trying out modified versions of its plan to use the spectrum near the GPS band. LightSquared's operations and GPS are fundamentally incompatible and the FCC should order LightSquared out of that band.

The FCC has an easy-to-use portal on its website to submit feedback on the testing results:

  • Click on this link for the FCC's Electronic Comments Filing System (ECFS):  http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs/upload/begin?procName=&filedFrom=X 
  • In the box which says "Proceeding Number," type:  11-109. It is important to include this docket number with your comments.
  • In the designated boxes, enter (a) your name or your company's name, and (b) your mailing address/city/state/zip.
  • In the box which says "Type in or paste your brief comments," do so.  Click "Continue."
  • A review page will load listing all of the information entered. If correct, click "Confirm."
  • If you have trouble, contact the FCC ECFS Helpdesk at 202-418-0193 or email at ecfshelp@fcc.gov.
FMI: http://aea.net, www.fcc.gov

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