As a user of TDOT GNSS Reference Network, we have asked for assistance in meeting a request from AASHTO and the FHWA regarding the use of GPS equipment on TDOT projects.
Here's some info:
A company called LightSquared has purchased a satellite provider and their licenses, and proposes to install 40,000+ high-powered transmission towers across the country in an effort to "bring Broadband to rural and underserved areas." Unfortunately, the signals from these towers will likely interfere with GPS operations, especially that of "precision" GPS units, which are used throughout the highway industry in such applications as surveying, operating machine-controlled equipment, asset tracking systems, and precision timing. The potential impacts of LightSquared's proposal are immense, as this network will have a direct effect on how each state conducts its surveying, construction, and other operations.
In an effort to accurately assess the potential impacts, AASHTO is assisting FHWA in determining what equipment could be affected and the potential level of impact to that equipment so that they can respond to the NTIA (National Telecommunications and Information Administration). The focus of this inventory is on timing and precision receivers. As time is short, we are requesting that the enclosed spreadsheet be filled out and returned to TDOT.GNSSNetwork@tn.gov no later than Friday, August 26, 2011. The goal is to obtain as complete an inventory as possible.
Under each column on the enclosed spreadsheet, we are requesting the following information:
Manufacturer - the manufacturer of each precision unit
Model Number or Identifier
# of Units - Number of units of this model that are owned by an agency or contractor
Off-the-shelf? (or custom-built) - In addition (if known), as the precision unit uses a radio link, is the link using public safety (local government) frequencies or the itinerant business frequencies?
Mission or Purpose - What is the primary purpose or mission for the unit? Examples include surveying, precision navigation, guidance for paint striping operations, timing, location of equipment, etc.
Location - Where can this equipment be found (city, state, etc.)
Available for testing? - The USDOT would like to borrow any unique equipment, if possible, for up to a month to ensure they know of any potential impacts to its use should LightSquared's network become operational
Contact - Who has control of the device(s)?
If you do not have the capability of opening the attached Excel file, please respond to this email with the above requested information.
Thank you for your assistance in this matter.
TDOT GNSS Network Team
Click here for the spreadsheet.