Pentagon awards deal for non-GPS precision guidance

Discussion in 'Science & Technology' started by AMDR, Apr 14, 2016.

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  1. AMDR

    AMDR Captain Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 7, 2015
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    Pentagon awards deal for non-GPS precision guidance

    APR 14, 2016

    The U.S. military has been looking for new ways to reduce its heavy reliance on the Global Positioning System (GPS) to provide precision guidance and navigation for munitions. Military planners worry that GPS dependence creates a critical vulnerability for weapons when signals are degraded by jamming or natural interference.

    Those concerns prompted the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to begin looking at miniature inertial sensor technology as a way to provide "self-contained" inertial navigation for precise guidance in the absence of GPS.

    That translates into cheap, small, low-power positioning, navigation and timing devices capable of operating on the battlefield. To meet the requirement, DARPA's Microsystems Technology Office began soliciting proposals last year for an effort called "Precise Robust Inertial Guidance for Munitions: Advanced Inertial Micro Sensors." The program aims to develop precise navigation for guided munitions "in the absence of external navigation aids" like GPS.

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  2. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Lieutenant Colonel

    Dec 17, 2015
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    Fifteen years ago, jammers were considered expensive equipment most common to governments or nation states. But now low-cost, low-powered jammers are everywhere, riding the wave of cheap, reliable consumer electronics like Wi-Fi routers and smartphones. Although military GPS systems are more resilient than their commercial cousins, there is no 100 percent guarantee, particularly against a high-powered jammer.

    A $25 Chinese-made jammer, found online, can block the GPS signal around a car, while a two- or three-watt jammer the size of a cigarette pack, available for a couple hundred dollars, could envelop several city blocks, said Joe Rolli, who heads Exelis' GPS jammer detection program, Signal Sentry.

    One sign of how common these are: In 2013, a New Jersey truck driver who wanted to mask his location from his boss used a GPS jammer that inadvertently jammed air traffic control at Newark Airport every time he drove by. Authorities located the driver, later hit with a $32,000 fine by the Federal Communications Commission.
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