Detecting GPS Jammers

photo illus. satellite by Pixabay

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The proliferation of electronic devices designed to interfere with Global Positioning System signals is a problem for the Pentagon and for many industries that depend on GPS. Users are vulnerable to denial and manipulation by adversarial actors. GPS signals can be denied through electronic jamming attacks or attacked with falsified PNT data, a technique known as spoofing. One of the challenges is identifying the precise location and source of interference. 

Radio-frequency data collected by satellites can help government and commercial sectors to locate GNSS interference hotspots. Geospatial analytics company, HawkEye 360, operates satellites equipped with software-defined radios, that fly in clusters of three: one in front, another behind and a third that oscillates back and forth. The company has three clusters of satellites in orbit today and plans to launch more, according to

The US Defense Innovation Unit (DIU), a Pentagon organization that works with commercial companies, wants to take advantage of the growing availability of data from space and other sources to geolocate GPS interference. A DIU solicitation in August asked for proposals on “situational awareness for intentional disruption of GNSS users.” According to the company, the US DoD is especially interested in “persistent, large-area coverage of falsified GNSS emitters that result in localized spoofing phenomenology.”