LightSquared says failed test was ‘rigged’

A key federal committee charged with testing the LightSquared network has determined there would be significant interference with GPS from the mobile broadband carrier.

The National Space-based Positioning, Navigation and Timing Executive Committee—which is made up of nine federal agencies—unanimously agreed that none of LightSquared’s proposals to combat GPS interference would work.

However, LightSquared is claiming that those tests were rigged to fail.

The company argues that the devices from GPS manufacturers that were used in the testing were “cherry picked” in secret and that independent authorities were not allowed to partake or oversee the test or test results.

LightSquared says the test was rigged by the manufacturers of GPS receivers and government end users to produce “bogus results.”  It says the tests focused on obsolete technology that is only used in “niche market devices”—receivers least able to withstand potential interference from wireless networks.

According to a story on the web site, LightSquared is calling for further testing from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). If it doesn’t succeed in those efforts, the article says, the project appears to be doomed.

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