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FRIDAY — DECEMBER 16, 2011 - ISSUE NO. 486

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Paging and Wireless Messaging Home Page image Newsletter Archive image Carrier Directory image Recommended Products and Services
Reference Papers Consulting Glossary of Terms Send an e-mail to Brad Dye

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Dear Friends of Wireless Messaging,

Greetings from Southern Illinois where even the gangsters go to church on Sunday.

Much of the news this week is about GPS. I have become very interested in GPS in the last few years.

Don't miss the photo and brief report on the Hardman wedding. Congratulations to the new couple. They both look very happy.

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There is some intense scientific speculation going on in one of the discussion groups that I monitor, about how Iran got the secret US drone aircraft to land. Most of the discussion is about how the GPS navigation system may have been jammed or even "spoofed" — a more difficult and a more serious tactic — if that's what actually happened. I think many people don't realize the important role that GPS plays in our modern world (military, industrial, and consumer products). I have reproduced two reports on the LightSquared attempts to deploy a new nationwide data network here is the USA on frequencies adjacent to the GPS channels. As regular readers know, I believe this is very dangerous and could result in serious consequences if ultimately allowed by the US government.

I have spent many, many hours on roof tops and mountain tops trying to track down mysterious radio interference. Books have been written on the strange things that can happen when two or more radio signals mix in places where they are not supposed to, and produce intermodulation products.

Exempli gratia: 2ƒa – ƒb = ƒc et cetera ad infinitum. [Meant to impress all non-engineers.]

LightSquared continues to claim that interference is not a problem while all the tests being done show that it is a big problem. I think this is a bad example of how the dark side of our democracy works — with lobbyists in Washington DC spending lots of time and money with our government officials — a major embarrassment.

I read that the IEEE Magazine has a recent article about pilot-less commercial airliners, using UAV* drone technology and being readily available to fly paying passengers from here to there using GPS to guide them. I don't think I would want to ride on such an airplane.

* UAV= unmanned aerial vehicle

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If you are a praying person, please remember Dean Mercer, Ron Mercer's son, who also worked in Paging and is a subscriber to this newsletter. Dean is in intensive care in a California hospital. He has taken a turn for the worse in his battle with cancer.

Dean, in case you read this, please accept our best wishes for a speedy recovery.

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Possible nationwide cell phone ban has locals talking


The National Transportation Safety Board recently recommended that all states enact a complete cell phone ban while behind the wheel.

By Jennifer Hayes
Dover Post
Posted Dec 15, 2011 @ 02:55 PM
Last update Dec 15, 2011 @ 03:10 PM

Dover, Del. — The National Transportation Safety Board made a bold move Tuesday, calling for a nationwide ban on cell phone use while behind the wheel.

While 35 states, including Delaware, currently ban texting while driving, the NTSB is recommending a complete ban of the non-emergency use of portable electronic devices while driving, including the use of hands-free technology.

The recommendation came after a fatal accident occurred in Gray Summit, Mo., last August, which killed two and injured nearly 40 others. The NTSB’s investigation showed that the main driver in the accident had sent and received 11 text messages within 11 minutes just prior to the accident.

“It is time for all of us to stand up for safety by turning off electric devices when driving,” said NTSB Chairman Deborah A.P. Hersman. “No call, no text, no update, is worth a human life.”

Jan. 2 will mark one year since Delaware’s hand-free cell phone law went into effect. The law currently bans texting while driving as well as bans the use of hand-held cell phones. Drivers are able, however, to use hands-free technology like a Bluetooth.

Allison Kirk, a spokeswoman for the Delaware Office of Highway Safety, said while the state is taking the NTSB’s recommendation under advisement, it is too early to make changes to the current law.

“We know it’s a hot topic,” she said. “More research is going to be done. This is just the first of many to come. We’re going to continue with the current Delaware law and allow that to get established before taking on any new laws.

Kirk said her office usually needs three to five years of data before it can start making its own recommendations for changes to the law.

According to the Delaware Office of Highway Safety, 199 crashes occurred in 2010 involving drivers using their cell phones, including two fatal accidents. A total of 26 accidents occurred due to texting behind the wheel.

As of November 2011, that number has dropped a bit, with 126 crashes involving the use of a cell phone, with one fatal accident, and 13 accidents due to texting.

“It’s hard to say if these decreases are due to the changes in state law, but it is nice to see there is a decline in these areas,” Kirk said. “It looks as if there is some impact, and it is good to see more people are listening and abiding by the laws.”

Teisha Burke of Dover said she thinks a complete ban, including the use of hands-free devices, is a good idea.

“I’ve seen the way people drive even when using a Bluetooth,” she said. “They’re still distracted.”

Rob Kitz of Frederica said the state needs to focus on enforcing the current laws instead of adding to them.

“Delaware is under-serviced by buses and we have no trains,” he said. “For people that don’t live near a bus stop and have to commute from Dover to Wilmington, that’s two hours of their life that they’re not able to communicate. That’s not right.”

Kitz said if a complete ban were to take effect, the state would need to making roads “communication-friendly.”

“There would need to be more places for people to stop,” he said. “We would need more rest areas, safety zones and wider shoulders.”

Jim Lardear, director of public relations for AAA Mid-Atlantic, said the travel organization has not focused on pushing for full wireless bans due to their limited legislative and public support. Rather, the company supports Delaware’s current laws and hopes that residents take it upon themselves to drive responsibly.

“Many people out there think they can multitask,” Lardear said. “They forget what they’re operating is a dangerous piece of heavy equipment. They need to focus on the complex task at hand and minimize any of those distractions.”

[ source ]

Now on to more news and views.

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This is the CMA's weekly newsletter about Wireless Messaging. You are receiving this because I believe you have requested it. This is not a SPAM. If you have received this message in error, or you are no longer interested in these topics, please click here , then click on "send" and you will be promptly removed from the mailing list.

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iland internet sulutions This newsletter is brought to you by the generous support of our advertisers and the courtesy of iland Internet Solutions Corporation . For more information about the web-hosting services available from iland Internet Solutions Corporation , please click on their logo to the left.

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A new issue of The Wireless Messaging Newsletter is posted on the web each week. A notification goes out by e-mail to subscribers on most Fridays around noon central US time. The notification message has a link to the actual newsletter on the web. That way it doesn't fill up your incoming e-mail account.

There is no charge for subscription and there are no membership restrictions. Readers are a very select group of wireless industry professionals, and include the senior managers of many of the world's major Paging and Wireless Messaging companies. There is an even mix of operations managers, marketing people, and engineers — so I try to include items of interest to all three groups. It's all about staying up-to-date with business trends and technology. I regularly get readers' comments, so this newsletter has become a community forum for the Paging, and Wireless Messaging communities. You are welcome to contribute your ideas and opinions. Unless otherwise requested, all correspondence addressed to me is subject to publication in the newsletter and on my web site. I am very careful to protect the anonymity of those who request it.

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Editorial Opinion pieces present only the opinions of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of the Critical Messaging Association, or its sponsors.

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cma logo Critical Messaging Association

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This premier international event (formerly the Global Paging Convention) is co-hosted by the Critical Messaging Association and the European Mobile Messaging Association. The two day convention is essential for anyone in the critical messaging industry. Join us — we'll exceed your expectations with informative educational presentations and plenty of social networking opportunities.
star Click here to register . star

The Hyatt Regency Austin provides the perfect location for guests to walk to Austin's attractions or to relax along the shore of Lady Bird Lake. To make reservations use the online reservation form or call 888-421-1442 or (non-toll-free) 402-592-6464, and reference the Global Critical Messaging Convention to receive the significantly discounted rate of $167/night (inclusive of internet). Reservations must be made before February 27, 2012.

Austin, the capital of Texas and home to the University of Texas, is a progressive city recognized as a haven for artists, writers, and musicians. In fact, with more than 200 live music venues, it is known as the Live Music Capital of the World®. While Tex-Mex and barbeque abound, the diversity of Austin cuisine reflects the diversity of the population.

boot Austin is home to several large employers across various industries and sectors. Along with government, education, and tourism, Austin is a high-tech hotspot. Major employers in the Austin metro area include: Texas Instruments, Dell Computer, IBM, Solectron, National Instruments, Applied Materials, and Advanced Micro Devices. In addition, the Brookings Institute ranked Austin 1st in the US and 26th in the world for jobs and income growth during the current economic recovery.

Austin is easily accessible. The Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (ABIA), recently named the “best domestic” airport in the U.S., has more than 150 daily commercial flights including 40 non-stop flights.

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CMA Executive Director
441 N. Crestwood Drive
Wilmington, NC 28405
Tel: 866-301-2272
CMA Regulatory Affairs Office
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2154 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20007-2280
Tel: 202-223-3772
Fax: 202-315-3587

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Advertiser Index

CMA — Critical Messaging Association
Daviscomms USA
Hark Technologies
Ira Wiesenfeld & Associates
Leavitt Communications
Preferred Wireless
Prism Paging
Ron Mercer — Paging & Wireless Network Planners LLC
PSSI — Product Support Services
TPL Systèmes
Critical Alert Systems d/b/a Northeast, UCOM & Teletouch Paging
VCP International
WiPath Communications

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A Happy Occasion


Easton, MD — December 10, 2011 Exclusive to the CMA Wireless Messaging News

Kenneth Hardman, founding member of the Critical Messaging Association today exchanged marriage vows with his dear friend Carolyn Codamo. They have known each other since 2003 when they were introduced by Judi and Barry Kanne.

Ken, who has lead the regulatory path for our association since its inception, celebrated this occasion with close friends and family from both sides.

We wish Ken and Carolyn a long life filled with happiness.

Source: Barry & Judi Kanne

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advertise here

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Falcone’s LightSquared Said to Disrupt 75% of GPS in Tests

December 13, 2011, 11:47 AM EST
By Todd Shields

Dec. 9 (Bloomberg) — Philip Falcone’s proposed LightSquared Inc. wireless service caused interference to 75 percent of global-positioning system receivers examined in a U.S. government test, according to a draft summary of results.

The results from testing conducted Oct. 31 to Nov. 4 show that “millions of fielded GPS units are not compatible” with the planned nationwide wholesale service, according to the draft seen by Bloomberg News.

“LightSquared signals caused harmful interference to majority of GPS receivers tested,” according to the draft prepared for a meeting next week of U.S. officials reviewing the LightSquared proposal. “No additional testing is required to confirm harmful interference exists.”

LightSquared, backed by $3 billion from Falcone’s Harbinger Capital Partners hedge fund, faces challenges from makers of global-positioning system devices who say the service will disrupt navigation by cars, boats, tractors and planes. U.S. regulators are withholding approval as they check on claims of interference.

The Reston, Virginia-based company has proposed offering high-speed mobile Internet service to as many as 260 million people using 40,000 base stations. The service would operate on airwaves formerly reserved mainly for satellites, and near those used by GPS devices.

LightSquared is proposing to operate at a lower power than the level used during the tests, and believes that its operations would affect about 10% of devices, Martin Harriman, executive vice president, said in an interview.

‘Harmful Interference’

The tests worked off an “extraordinarily conservative” threshold and didn’t show the devices’ performance was affected, Harriman said.

“If we’re affecting the performance of the device — my goodness, we’d like to be sure that doesn't happen,” Harriman said.

The laboratory testing was performed for the National Space-Based Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) Systems Engineering Forum, an executive branch body that helps advise policy makers on issues around GPS. It found that 69 of 92, or 75 percent, of receivers tested “experienced harmful interference” at the equivalent of 100 meters (109 yards) from a LightSquared base station.

The devices tested include those used for automobile and boat navigation. The forum is to present its results on Dec. 14 in Washington.

High-Precision Receivers

The testing was requested by the National Telecommunications & Information Administration, a Commerce Department agency that oversees airwaves use. The agency is still reviewing data, Moira Vahey, a spokeswoman, said in an interview today.

The government is to test high-precision receivers, used in farm equipment and scientific instruments, next year.

Agencies participating in the testing included the Department of Defense and the Federal Aviation Administration, according to the draft summary. Companies participating included GPS makers Trimble Navigation Ltd. and Garmin Ltd., farm-gear maker Deere & Co., and General Motor Co.’s OnStar unit, according to the summary.

LightSquared is “outraged by the illegal leak of incomplete government data,” Harriman said in an e-mailed statement. “This breach attempts to draw an inaccurate conclusion to negatively influence the future of LightSquared and narrowly serve the business interests of the GPS industry.”

Source: Businessweek

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Latest Tests Confirm LightSquared Interference to GPS Navigation Equipment

House DoD Authorization bill would limit FCC power to allow the company to implement its plan if terrestrial transmitters interfere with military GPS receivers.

December 14, 2011

Tests of LightSquared’s proposed wireless broadband transmissions in the lower LightSquared band (1526–1536 MHz) caused harmful interference to a majority of personal/general navigation GPS receivers.

Today (December 14, 2011), a technical steering group of the National Space-Based Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) Executive Committee reviewed an evaluation of test results by the National PNT Systems Engineering Forum (NPEF). Additional tests had been ordered following a September 13 public notice by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) after more extensive testing done last summer revealed widespread interference from LightSquared’s terrestrial transmitters at the higher band (1526-1559 MHz) adjacent to GPS L1, which LightSquared has petitioned the agency to allocate to it.

Although the new round of tests found no significant interference with GPS receivers integrated into cellular phones, other types of personal navigation devices were affected. Separate analysis by the Federal Aviation Administration also found interference with a flight safety system designed to warn pilots of approaching terrain, according to a press release issued by National Coordination Office for PNT (NCO).

Anthony Russo, NCO director, said the findings would be sent to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), which advises the President on telecommunications policy and represents federal agencies to the FCC.

“Over the next several weeks, the final analysis of the findings will be completed and a final report will be transmitted from NTIA to the FCC,” Russo stated.

Last week, a Bloomberg news report cited a draft summary of the results from the tests that 69 out of 92 receivers tested, or 75 percent, “experienced harmful interference” at the equivalent of 100 meters (109 yards) from a LightSquared base station.

LightSquared suffered another setback today when the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that prohibits the FCC from providing “final authorization for LightSquared operations until Defense Department concerns about GPS interference have been resolved.”

Rep. Mike Turner, an Ohio Republican who chairs the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Strategic Forces, proposed the language in the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

The Commander of Air Force Space Command, Gen. William Shelton, stated at a hearing held by Turner’s Subcommittee in September 2011 that, “tests show LightSquared signal causes significant interference to military GPS.”

“Our military is heavily reliant on GPS capability to do its job,” Turner said of his proposal. “It is unacceptable for our armed forces to be put at greater risk or made less effective as a result of LightSquared’s operations. Congress and the Defense Department must have assurances from the FCC and this Administration that it will fully resolve the harmful interference issue prior to granting LightSquared final authorization to provide service.“

Meanwhile, on Monday (December 12, 2011), LightSquared proposed to make deployment of its terrestrial operations in the spectrum closest to GPS be subject not only to the consent of the FCC but also to the “explicit consent” of the National PNT Executive committee.

The company also offered to limit its power on the ground by eliminating the final phase of increasing power to –24 dBm and extending the period during which it maintains power at the lower level of –30 dBm to January 1, 2016, instead of a year earlier as originally planned.

The offer was conditioned on the company receiving “an FCC Order satisfactory to LightSquared that removes the condition relating to commercial launch of the company's terrestrial network on its lower 10 MHz downlink channel (1526–1536 MHz) and its entire uplink band (1626.5–1645.511646.5–1660.5 MHz).

In response to this proposal, the Coalition to Save Our GPS called the move “a constructive step,” but added, “Unfortunately, LightSquared ties its agreement to do that to being given the green light to proceed full steam ahead in the lower 10 MHz, which is very premature,”

A second round of tests still lies ahead that would evaluate proposed mitigation plans for high-precision and timing receivers. The latter tests will not begin until LightSquared develops a filtering solution for such devices.

Last week, the company announced that testing conducted by an unidentified “independent laboratory” has confirmed that several major high-precision receivers, including those developed by Javad GNSS, “are 100 percent compatible with LightSquared’s network.”

LightSquared commissioned independent lab to test GPS interference solutions developed by three private companies — Javad GNSS, PCTEL and Partron. The company claimed that three additional “high-precision GPS manufacturers — all members of the Save Our GPS Coalition — have also developed solutions that have been tested at the lab. Initial testing by one of those companies, Hemisphere GPS, has gone very well.”

Source: InsideGNSS

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Product Support Services, Inc.

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Based in Coppell, Texas, a suburb of Dallas/Fort Worth, and located just five minutes north of the DFW Airport, PSSI receives, repairs and ships approximately 4,000 discrete units each day.

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  • PSSI ’s state-of-the-art and proprietary Work-In-Process (WIP) systems, and its Material Planning and Warehouse Management systems, enable PSSI to track discrete units by employee, work center, lot, model, work order, location and process through the entire reverse logistics process. Access to this information can be provided to our customers so that they can track the real-time movement of their products.

Pager and Electronics Repair

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Product Support Services, Inc.
511 South Royal Lane
Coppell, Texas 75019
877-777-8798 (Toll Free)
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Murder suspects seek separation

Tosa police clerk named as possible conspirator

By Aaron Martin
Dec. 13, 2011

The pair facing homicide charges in the death of a Brookfield businessman in June will appear in court Thursday to request separate trials.

Lynn M. Hajny, 49, of New Berlin and Tommy Douyette, 42, of Milwaukee are charged with first degree intentional homicide in the beating and strangulation death of 63-year-old John Aegerter in his home on Golf Parkway on June 22.

An affidavit filed in Waukesha County Circuit Court last month by city of Brookfield police identifies 43-year-old Mark Finken, a former Wauwatosa Police Department clerk, as "a possible third conspirator" in the homicide of 63-year-old Aegerter.

The affidavit states that Hajny made four phone calls to Finken at the approximate time of Aegerter's death on June 21.

The affidavit also notes that Finken committed suicide in his Wauwatosa home after being interviewed by police on two occasions regarding "his involvement in this homicide conspiracy."

Finken had been suspended from the Wauwatosa Police Department about a week before his death. The department declined to release his personnel records due to the ongoing investigation.

The Brookfield Police Department also declined to comment on the investigation.

A jury trial is scheduled to begin Jan. 30 for Hajny and Douyette. However, their attorneys have filed motions requesting separate trials because they made incriminating comments about each other.

According to a criminal complaint, Douyette and Hajny went to Aegerter's home to confront him about money owed to Hajny's husband. Douyette, under the direction of Hajny, beat and strangled Aegerter.

A tip from Hajny's cousin led to their arrests in Slinger on June 22.

Aegerter owned Air Page, 14150 W. Greenfield Ave., and dozens of communication towers that transmit cell phone, pager and two-way radio signals.

Source: BrookfieldNOW

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LEAVITT Communications

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its stil here


It's still here — the tried and true Motorola Alphamate 250. Now owned, supported, and available from Leavitt Communications. Call us for new or reconditioned units, parts, manuals, and repairs.

We also offer refurbished Alphamate 250’s, Alphamate IIs, the original Alphamate and new and refurbished pagers, pager repairs, pager parts and accessories. We are FULL SERVICE in Paging!

E-mail Phil Leavitt ( ) for pricing and delivery information or for a list of other available paging and two-way related equipment.

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Phil Leavitt

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7508 N. Red Ledge Dr.
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253

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TPL Systèmes

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TPL Systèmes

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Preferred Wireless

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Terminals & Controllers:
1 Motorola ASC1500
2 GL3100 RF Director 
9 Glenayre GLS2164 Satellite Receivers
1 GL3000L Complete w/Spares
1 GL3000ES Terminal
2 Zetron 2200 Terminals
  Unipage — Many Unipage Cards & Chassis
Link Transmitters:
2 Glenayre QT4201 & 6201, 25 & 100W Midband Link TX
2 Glenayre QT6201 Link Repeater and Link Station in Hot Standby
1 Glenayre QT6994, 150W, 900 MHz Link TX
3 Motorola 10W, 900 MHz Link TX (C35JZB6106)
2 Motorola 30W, Midband Link TX (C42JZB6106AC)
2 Eagle Midband Link Transmitters, 125W
5 Glenayre GL C2100 Link Repeaters
VHF Paging Transmitters
1 Motorola VHF PURC-5000 125W, ACB or TRC
6 Glenayre GLT8411, 250W, VHF TX
14 Motorola VHF 350W Nucleus NAC Transmitters
13 Motorola VHF 350W Nucleus Cnet Transmitters
1 Motorola Nucleus, 125W, VHF, TX
UHF Paging Transmitters:
20 Glenayre UHF GLT5340, 125W, DSP Exciter
6 Motorola PURC-5000 110 & 225W, TRC & ACB
2 QT-7795, 250W, UHF TX
900 MHz Paging Transmitters:
3 Glenayre GLT 8600, 500W
2 Glenayre GLT8200, 25W (NEW)
15 Glenayre GLT-8500 250W
35 Glenayre 900 MHz DSP Exciters
25 Glenayre GLT-8500 Final PAs
35 Glenayre GLT-8500 Power Supplies

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Too Much To List • Call or E-Mail
Rick McMichael
Preferred Wireless, Inc.
10658 St. Charles Rock Rd.
St. Louis, MO 63074
888-429-4171 or 314-429-3000
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left arrow OR HERE  

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Preferred Wireless

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ivy corp

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Brad Dye, Ron Mercer, Allan Angus, and Vic Jackson are friends and colleagues who work both together and independently, on wireline and wireless communications projects. Click here for a summary of their qualifications and experience. They collaborate on consulting assignments, and share the work according to their individual expertise and their schedules.


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Exclusive: Iran hijacked US drone, says Iranian engineer

In an exclusive interview, an engineer working to unlock the secrets of the captured RQ-170 Sentinel says they exploited a known vulnerability and tricked the US drone into landing in Iran.

By Scott Peterson, Staff writer, Payam Faramarzi*, Correspondent
The Christian Science Monitor
December 15, 2011

This photo released on Thursday, Dec. 8, by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, claims to show US RQ-170 Sentinel drone which Tehran says its forces downed last week, as the chief of the aerospace division of Iran's Revolutionary Guards, Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, right, listens to an unidentified colonel, in an undisclosed location within Iran. (Sepahnews/AP)


Iran guided the CIA's "lost" stealth drone to an intact landing inside hostile territory by exploiting a navigational weakness long-known to the US military, according to an Iranian engineer now working on the captured drone's systems inside Iran.

Iranian electronic warfare specialists were able to cut off communications links of the American bat-wing RQ-170 Sentinel, says the engineer, who works for one of many Iranian military and civilian teams currently trying to unravel the drone’s stealth and intelligence secrets, and who could not be named for his safety.

Using knowledge gleaned from previous downed American drones and a technique proudly claimed by Iranian commanders in September, the Iranian specialists then reconfigured the drone's GPS coordinates to make it land in Iran at what the drone thought was its actual home base in Afghanistan.

"The GPS navigation is the weakest point," the Iranian engineer told the Monitor, giving the most detailed description yet published of Iran's "electronic ambush" of the highly classified US drone. "By putting noise [jamming] on the communications, you force the bird into autopilot. This is where the bird loses its brain."

The “spoofing” technique that the Iranians used – which took into account precise landing altitudes, as well as latitudinal and longitudinal data – made the drone “land on its own where we wanted it to, without having to crack the remote-control signals and communications” from the US control center, says the engineer.

The revelations about Iran's apparent electronic prowess come as the US, Israel, and some European nations appear to be engaged in an ever-widening covert war with Iran, which has seen assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists, explosions at Iran's missile and industrial facilities, and the Stuxnet computer virus that set back Iran’s nuclear program.

Now this engineer’s account of how Iran took over one of America’s most sophisticated drones suggests Tehran has found a way to hit back. The techniques were developed from reverse-engineering several less sophisticated American drones captured or shot down in recent years, the engineer says, and by taking advantage of weak, easily manipulated GPS signals, which calculate location and speed from multiple satellites.

Western military experts and a number of published papers on GPS spoofing indicate that the scenario described by the Iranian engineer is plausible.

"Even modern combat-grade GPS [is] very susceptible” to manipulation, says former US Navy electronic warfare specialist Robert Densmore, adding that it is “certainly possible” to re-calibrate the GPS on a drone so that it flies on a different course. “I wouldn't say it's easy, but the technology is there.”

In 2009, Iran-backed Shiite militants in Iraq were found to have downloaded live, unencrypted video streams from American Predator drones with inexpensive, off-the-shelf software. But Iran’s apparent ability now to actually take control of a drone is far more significant.

Iran asserted its ability to do this in September, as pressure mounted over its nuclear program.

Gen. Moharam Gholizadeh, the deputy for electronic warfare at the air defense headquarters of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), described to Fars News how Iran could alter the path of a GPS-guided missile – a tactic more easily applied to a slower-moving drone.

“We have a project on hand that is one step ahead of jamming, meaning ‘deception’ of the aggressive systems,” said Gholizadeh, such that “we can define our own desired information for it so the path of the missile would change to our desired destination.”

Gholizadeh said that “all the movements of these [enemy drones]” were being watched, and “obstructing” their work was “always on our agenda.”

That interview has since been pulled from Fars’ Persian-language website. And last month, the relatively young Gholizadeh died of a heart attack, which some Iranian news sites called suspicious – suggesting the electronic warfare expert may have been a casualty in the covert war against Iran.

Iran's growing electronic capabilities

Iranian lawmakers say the drone capture is a "great epic" and claim to be "in the final steps of breaking into the aircraft's secret code."

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta told Fox News on Dec. 13 that the US will "absolutely" continue the drone campaign over Iran, looking for evidence of any nuclear weapons work. But the stakes are higher for such surveillance, now that Iran can apparently disrupt the work of US drones.

US officials skeptical of Iran’s capabilities blame a malfunction, but so far can't explain how Iran acquired the drone intact. One American analyst ridiculed Iran’s capability, telling Defense News that the loss was “like dropping a Ferrari into an ox-cart technology culture.”

Yet Iran’s claims to the contrary resonate more in light of new details about how it brought down the drone – and other markers that signal growing electronic expertise.

A former senior Iranian official who asked not to be named said: "There are a lot of human resources in Iran.... Iran is not like Pakistan."

“Technologically, our distance from the Americans, the Zionists, and other advanced countries is not so far to make the downing of this plane seem like a dream for us … but it could be amazing for others,” deputy IRGC commander Gen. Hossein Salami said this week.

According to a European intelligence source, Iran shocked Western intelligence agencies in a previously unreported incident that took place sometime in the past two years, when it managed to “blind” a CIA spy satellite by “aiming a laser burst quite accurately.”

More recently, Iran was able to hack Google security certificates, says the engineer. In September, the Google accounts of 300,000 Iranians were made accessible by hackers. The targeted company said "circumstantial evidence" pointed to a "state-driven attack" coming from Iran, meant to snoop on users.

Cracking the protected GPS coordinates on the Sentinel drone was no more difficult, asserts the engineer.

US knew of GPS systems' vulnerability

Use of drones has become more risky as adversaries like Iran hone countermeasures. The US military has reportedly been aware of vulnerabilities with pirating unencrypted drone data streams since the Bosnia campaign in the mid-1990s.

Top US officials said in 2009 that they were working to encrypt all drone data streams in Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan – after finding militant laptops loaded with days' worth of data in Iraq – and acknowledged that they were "subject to listening and exploitation."

Perhaps as easily exploited are the GPS navigational systems upon which so much of the modern military depends.

"GPS signals are weak and can be easily out-punched [overridden] by poorly controlled signals from television towers, devices such as laptops and MP3 players, or even mobile satellite services," Andrew Dempster, a professor from the University of New South Wales School of Surveying and Spatial Information Systems, told a March conference on GPS vulnerability in Australia.

"This is not only a significant hazard for military, industrial, and civilian transport and communication systems, but criminals have worked out how they can jam GPS," he says.

The US military has sought for years to fortify or find alternatives to the GPS system of satellites, which are used for both military and civilian purposes. In 2003, a “Vulnerability Assessment Team” at Los Alamos National Laboratory published research explaining how weak GPS signals were easily overwhelmed with a stronger local signal.

“A more pernicious attack involves feeding the GPS receiver fake GPS signals so that it believes it is located somewhere in space and time that it is not,” reads the Los Alamos report. “In a sophisticated spoofing attack, the adversary would send a false signal reporting the moving target’s true position and then gradually walk the target to a false position.”

The vulnerability remains unresolved, and a paper presented at a Chicago communications security conference in October laid out parameters for successful spoofing of both civilian and military GPS units to allow a "seamless takeover" of drones or other targets.

To “better cope with hostile electronic attacks,” the US Air Force in late September awarded two $47 million contracts to develop a "navigation warfare" system to replace GPS on aircraft and missiles, according to the Defense Update website.

Official US data on GPS describes "the ongoing GPS modernization program" for the Air Force, which "will enhance the jam resistance of the military GPS service, making it more robust."

Why the drone's underbelly was damaged

Iran's drone-watching project began in 2007, says the Iranian engineer, and then was stepped up and became public in 2009 – the same year that the RQ-170 was first deployed in Afghanistan with what were then state-of-the-art surveillance systems.

In January, Iran said it had shot down two conventional (non-stealth) drones, and in July, Iran showed Russian experts several US drones – including one that had been watching over the underground uranium enrichment facility at Fordo, near the holy city of Qom.

In capturing the stealth drone this month at Kashmar, 140 miles inside northeast Iran, the Islamic Republic appears to have learned from two years of close observation.

Iran displayed the drone on state-run TV last week, with a dent in the left wing and the undercarriage and landing gear hidden by anti-American banners.

The Iranian engineer explains why: "If you look at the location where we made it land and the bird's home base, they both have [almost] the same altitude," says the Iranian engineer. "There was a problem [of a few meters] with the exact altitude so the bird's underbelly was damaged in landing; that's why it was covered in the broadcast footage."

Prior to the disappearance of the stealth drone earlier this month, Iran’s electronic warfare capabilities were largely unknown – and often dismissed.

"We all feel drunk [with happiness] now," says the Iranian engineer. "Have you ever had a new laptop? Imagine that excitement multiplied many-fold." When the Revolutionary Guard first recovered the drone, they were aware it might be rigged to self-destruct, but they "were so excited they could not stay away."

* Scott Peterson, the Monitor's Middle East correspondent, wrote this story with an Iranian journalist who publishes under the pen name Payam Faramarzi and cannot be further identified for security reasons.

Source: The Christian Science Monitor

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Critical Response Systems Announces New Low-Cost Nurse Call System

Solution provides cost-effective nurse calling or back-up for legacy systems

Norcross, GA (PRWEB) December 15, 2011

Critical Response Systems (CRS), a provider of leading-edge, mission-critical communication systems, announced recently the addition of a new low-cost nurse call system that uses independent, custom wireless communications technology so nurse call services are not affected by local LAN or commercial wireless outages. The system is an add-on solution to the company’s SPARKGAP™ critical alerting system for code paging and hospital critical communications. This new add-on solution provides hospitals with a low-cost nurse call solution that also can be used as a backup to a facility’s presently installed nurse call system.

Utilizing a small handheld fob that looks and works much like an electronic car door opener, a patient simply pushes a button and the nurse’s pager receives the message. The system can also be programmed to communicate with larger alarm management systems for relaying messages to nurses’ pagers.

“Our nurse call system is an excellent solution for any size hospital that wants to have a back-up system in place for patients to communicate with nurses,” commented Brian Claise, Chief Technology Officer for CRS. “At the price point we are charging, the system also offers hospitals a cost-effective alternative to the more expensive nurse call systems that are in the healthcare marketplace today.”

About Critical Response Systems
Critical Response Systems’ manufactures leading-edge wireless data systems, focused solely on critical messaging and alerting. We know that every response starts with an alert, and our systems use the latest technology to ensure that first responders and clinical personnel get their messages quickly, correctly and reliably. For more information, visit us at .


Contact: Brian Claise
Critical Response Systems (CRS)

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Hark Technologies

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Over 70% of first responders are volunteers.
Without an alert, interoperability means nothing.

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Select portions of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update, a newsletter from the Law Offices of Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP are reproduced in this section with the firm's permission.

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GRASSLEY SAYS HE WILL PUT HOLD ON NEW FCC NOMINEES UNTIL MORE DATA ON LIGHTSQUARED IS RELEASED: The Senate Commerce Committee last week unanimously approved the nominations of Jessica Rosenworcel and Ajit Vradaraj Pai to be FCC Commissioners. But Sen. Charles Grassley (R.-Iowa) said he will place a hold on the nominees, which would block a full Senate vote, if the FCC does not release more documents related to its decision to grant a conditional waiver for LightSquared to offer terrestrial Long Term Evolution (LTE) service. The waiver requires LightSquared to resolve GPS interference issues before beginning commercial service. LightSquared said GPS interference test results showed that high-precision GPS receivers from three GPS device makers are compatible with LightSquared's L-band spectrum. LightSquared pressed regulators to approve the commercial operation of its network, but GPS interests still have concerns. The FCC and National Telecommunications and Information Administration are still conducting their own tests of LightSquared's network for potential GPS interference concerns and have not indicated when they will make a decision on approving LightSquared's network. LightSquared executives have said they need more clarity from regulators to move ahead with funding, but that has not stopped LightSquared from continuing to sign up wholesale customers.

COMMENT SOUGHT ON PRELIMINARY PLAN FOR RETROSPECTIVE ANALYSIS OF EXISTING FCC RULES: On November 7, 2011, the FCC released a Preliminary Plan for Retrospective Analysis of Existing Rules. The Preliminary Plan describes the Commission’s ongoing process of identifying outmoded or counter-productive rules and provides an overview of recent and current proceedings that include retrospective analysis. The Commission seeks comment generally on the Preliminary Plan and also seeks specific comment on the following:

(1) What additional steps should the Commission take to identify rules that should be changed, streamlined, consolidated, or removed?
(2) How can the Commission further reduce burdens on industry and consumers while fostering competition, diversity and innovation?
(3) Are there Commission rules or reporting requirements that are duplicative or that have conflicting requirements among its bureaus and offices or with other agencies?
(4) Are there Commission rules or reporting requirements that could be modified to better accomplish their regulatory objectives?

In addition, commenters are encouraged to submit other suggestions that may help the Commission develop better regulations and processes. Commenters are asked to specifically identify the rules or reporting requirements they are addressing, and to provide specific suggestions for ways the Commission should modify such rules or reporting requirements, including alternative language where possible. Comments in this CG Docket No. 11-199 proceeding are due February 8, and replies are due February 22.

COMMENT DATES SET FOR PUBLIC NOTICE ON FCC PROCESS: The FCC has established a comment cycle for its Public Notice soliciting comment on additional procedures to improve transparency and efficiency in Commission proceedings. In particular, the Public Notice seeks comment on the benefits and burdens of requiring commenters to file materials they cite in pleadings or ex parte notices submitted in rulemaking proceedings, so that those materials are more easily accessible to all interested parties (BloostonLaw Telecom Update, November 30). Comments in this CG Docket No. 10-44 proceeding are due January 9, and replies are due January 23.

FCC RESTARTS 180-DAY REVIEW CLOCK FOR AT&T/QUALCOMM 700 MHz DEAL: The FCC has restarted the 180-day “clock” for review of the proposed assignment of Qualcomm’s Lower 700 MHz Band licenses to AT&T Mobility in WT Docket No. 11-18 . The FCC had been evaluating this transaction parallel to the proposed AT&T/T-Mobile merger. However, because AT&T and T-Mobile’s parent, Deutsche Telekom recently withdrew their applications to transfer control of T-Mobile’s licenses, the FCC determined that it was appropriate to review the AT&T/Qualcomm deal separately, as the parties had requested. In a related matter, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has stayed the AT&T/T-Mobile merger litigation until next month. The Court instructed AT&T and the Department of Justice to file a status report on January 12 regarding whether the transaction will be pursued.

FCC ADOPTS ENVIRONMENTAL RULES INVOLVING TOWERS, MIGRATORY BIRDS: The FCC has released an Order on Remand in which it takes procedural measures to ensure that the environmental effects of proposed communications towers, including their effects on migratory birds, are fully considered prior to construction. The FCC instituted a pre-application notification process so that members of the public will have an opportunity to comment on the environmental effects of proposed antenna structures that require registration with the Commission. As an interim measure pending completion of a programmatic environmental analysis and subsequent rulemaking proceeding, the FCC also required that an Environmental Assessment (EA) be prepared for any proposed tower over 450 feet in height. In the Order , the FCC took the following specific actions:

  • The FCC now requires that prior to the filing of a completed ASR application for a new antenna structure, members of the public be given an opportunity to comment on the environmental effects of the proposal. The applicant will provide notice of the proposal to the local community and the Commission will post information about the proposal on its website. Commission staff will consider any comments received from the public to determine whether an EA is required for the tower.
  • Environmental notice will also be required if an ASR applicant changes the lighting of an existing tower to a less preferred lighting style.
  • The FCC modified its procedures so that EAs for those registered towers that require EAs will also be filed and considered prior to the ASR application. Those EAs are currently filed together with either the ASR application or a service-specific license or permit application.
  • The FCC instituted an interim procedural requirement that an EA be filed for all proposed registered towers over 450 feet in height. Staff will review the EA to determine whether the tower will have a significant environmental impact. This processing requirement is an interim measure pending completion of the ongoing programmatic environmental analysis of the ASR program.

The FCC’s Order is in response to the decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in American Bird Conservancy v. FCC, in which the court held that the FCC’s current antenna structure registration (ASR) procedures impermissibly fail to offer members of the public a meaningful opportunity to request an EA for proposed towers that the Commission considers categorically excluded from review under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

VERIZON WIRELESS, LEAP SEEK APPROVAL TO TRANSFER 700 MHz LICENSES: Verizon Wireless and Leap Wireless International have filed a series of applications seeking approval to assign spectrum licenses. The applicants request consent to assign the 700 MHz Lower Band Block A license for the Chicago BEA from Verizon Wireless to Leap Wireless. In addition, Leap Wireless will assign to Verizon Wireless 23 PCS licenses and 13 AWS-1 licenses in full; disaggregated portions of one PCS license and one AWS-1 license; and partitioned portions of three AWS-1 licenses. The applicants state that the assignment of licenses will enable Verizon Wireless to add spectrum capacity in some markets that will help address the rapidly growing demand of its customers for broadband wireless services. The applicants also state that Leap Wireless is in need of the additional spectrum in the Chicago area to expand its service offerings and to deploy LTE network technology, which will allow it to offer improved broadband data services and to continue to compete with other carriers in that market. Finally, the applicants explain that the proposed transactions involve the sale of excess spectrum in the subject markets, and the transactions will not affect the existing operations of either carrier or involve any customer transition issues. Preliminary review of the applications indicates that the proposed transfer of licenses would result in Verizon Wireless acquiring between 10-30 megahertz of spectrum in 204 CMAs. Leap Wireless would acquire 12 megahertz of spectrum in 13 CMAs.

FCC ADOPTS RULES TO IMPLEMENT “CALM Act” TO “OUTLAW” LOUD COMMERCIALS: The FCC, at its December 13 open meeting, adopted a Report and Order (R&O) that implements the 2010 Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act (the CALM Act), in which Congress gave the Commission, for the first time, authority to address the problem of excessive commercial loudness. The R&O requires that commercials have the same average volume as the programs they accompany. The rules also establish simple, practical ways for stations and MVPDs to demonstrate their compliance with the rules. They carry out Congress’ mandate to give viewers relief from overloud commercials while avoiding unnecessary burdens on television stations and MVPDs. As the CALM Act requires, the rules will become effective one year after the date of their adoption, or December 13, 2012 . The FCC said this gives stations and MVPDs until this date to be in full compliance. Equally important, the Commission added, it provides ample time for programmers and networks to provide their distributors with certifications stating the commercials that accompany their programming are fully compliant with these rules. These certifications, though not mandatory, will simplify the safe harbor process for all stations and MVPDs. While consumer complaints about loud commercials have diminished since 2009, the FCC said it expects that these new rules will reduce loudness complaints still further.

BloostonLaw Telecom Update Vol. 14, No. 47 December 14, 2011

This newsletter is not intended to provide legal advice. Those interested in more information should contact the firm. For additional information, contact Hal Mordkofsky at 202-828-5520 or

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Mistaken Verizon emergency alert scares N.J.

December 12, 2011 9:04 PM

(AP) NEWARK, N.J. - Not quite the "War Of The Worlds" broadcast of a Martian invasion in New Jersey, a Verizon "emergency" alert Monday that the company texted to its wireless customers still jangled some nerves and triggered hundreds of calls from concerned residents to local and state offices.

The company sent the alert to customers in Middlesex, Monmouth and Ocean counties, warning of a "civil emergency" and telling people to "take shelter now." Trouble was, the message was meant to be a test but it wasn't labeled as such, Verizon later admitted.

Within about 90 minutes, the state homeland security and emergency management offices posted on Twitter that no emergency existed, but by then people had called a variety of local, county and state agencies to express their concerns.

In Monmouth County, the number of calls to the county 911 call center doubled between noon and 1 p.m. to more than 170, compared to the same time last week, Cynthia Scott, a county sheriff's department spokeswoman, said.

"It was more concern than panic," Scott said. "We had people calling who had a lot of questions."

New Jersey State Police also fielded calls, as did numerous public offices in Ocean County.

"It seemed like calls went to any agency that had a listed phone number," said Lt. Keith Klements, division commander for the county sheriff's office.

The reaction wasn't as extreme as the panic touched off by Orson Welles' 1938 "War Of The Worlds" radio broadcast of a fake Martian invasion in Grovers Mill, N.J. Many people believed the broadcast was a real emergency announcement. But for a short while Monday, the alert started a chain reaction across a wide swath of central New Jersey.

"We were getting reports from individuals but not from any of our people out in the field," Klements said. "And no one was saying it was coming from a specific source. But we have to take it seriously, so we immediately checked with the state."

A spokesman for the state Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness didn't immediately return a phone message.

In an email, a Verizon spokesman said the company apologized for any inconvenience or concern that the message caused. The company didn't say why the message was sent without being labeled as a test or whether Monday's incident was the first time such a mistake had occurred.

Source: CBS News (Thanks to Frank Mercurio, W9FM.)

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Generic Sweden AB was founded in 1993 and consists of two divisions – a consultancy division and a telecom division. Our Consultancy Division offers high-quality services to clients within the defence and civil security sector as well as product development companies within the energy- and telecommunications-, transport/infrastructure- and medtech sectors. The Telecom Division is a specialised telecommunications operator that operates its own network for critical communication. The division offers products and services within the Minicall and Messit product areas. Generic is listed on First North stock exchange under the abbreviated name "GENI".

—Johan Ågren, CEO

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claude everton

Claude Everton, VE2YI

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Brad Dye
With best regards,

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Newsletter Editor


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Brad Dye, Editor
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