FAA Tells Pilots To Go Analogue As GNSS ‘Spoofing’ Incidents Increase

FPK1

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In a recently published Safety Alert for Operators, the FAA advises civilian flight crews to monitor the performance of their equipment onboard, report any GPS/GNSS issues to air traffic controllers, and prepare to fly without digital satellite navigation systems before they take off...

 
In a recently published Safety Alert for Operators, the FAA advises civilian flight crews to monitor the performance of their equipment onboard, report any GPS/GNSS issues to air traffic controllers, and prepare to fly without digital satellite navigation systems before they take off...


Here’s what’s really scary:
Safran states in a brochure for its defense simulators, “Until a few years ago, a GNSS spoofing attack required expensive, high-end equipment in the $50,000- $500,000 range. Today, low tech equipment and open source software can enable anyone to spoof for as little as $100.”

Now consider that it’s one thing for an aircraft to suddenly think it’s somewhere 100 miles away. That kind of jump is detectable. It’s another thing entirely to introduce a slight error that over time runs the plane into terrain. Or imagine a tiny spoof to two aircraft that brings about a mid-air.

ATC radar can provide some resilience where it’s available, which fortunately is most of the US. Seems like we need a decent low-cost INS that could be an onboard watchdog.
 
Would it ever be viable to have a solid-state inertial reference system? Self-contained, not dependent in any radio signals. Cost aside, is it feasible? Has it been tried?
 
Would it ever be viable to have a solid-state inertial reference system? Self-contained, not dependent in any radio signals. Cost aside, is it feasible? Has it been tried?

Old hat.

One example:
 
Becoming less and less useful as VORs go offline.

Maybe we should require all planes to have compasses.....
There’s the MON plus ILS/LOCs. It will be a bit before it’s all taken offline. Not perfect but still a viable IFR environment. So my recommendation still stands.
 
Unfortunately there is a percentage of pilots who will choose to believe the GPS even when it is demonstrably wrong. I saw that with a VLF failure years ago…it calculated 170 knots of wind out of the east, and VOR navigation showed us 5 miles off course. Shortly thereafter, it flagged itself. The captain refused to admit that it wasn't working, so rather than transition to ground-based navigation, we presumably followed a bad VLF for two hours. I say “presumably“ because I applied a rough wind correction angle and centered up “direct to” every so often when the captain wasn’t looking.

Fortunately the arrival and approach at the destination were ground-based procedures.
 
...Today, low tech equipment and open source software can enable anyone to spoof for as little as $100..

I can't imagine you'd have much range for a hundred bucks.
 
This is one of the reasons that I’m a staunch proponent of maintaining a Nav radio capability in your panel for IFR operations.
I'm a VFR Sport Pilot with just a few hours under the hood (to satisfy my curiosity). Am I mistaken that many VORs are being taken off line? IF that's the case then what's available to an IFR pilot if GPS cannot be trusted?
 
I'm a VFR Sport Pilot with just a few hours under the hood (to satisfy my curiosity). Am I mistaken that many VORs are being taken off line? IF that's the case then what's available to an IFR pilot if GPS cannot be trusted?
Not all VORs are being taken off line— they are going to maintain the Minimum Operating Network (MON) that will insure a ground based nav capability for the foreseeable future.
 
Not all VORs are being taken off line— they are going to maintain the Minimum Operating Network (MON) that will insure a ground based nav capability for the foreseeable future.
OK, thanks.
 
and for those that pay attention to antenna top/bottom of the hull, imagine how little it would cost to put a spoofing system on a small drone or a balloon that could get above aircraft below the transition altitude...
 
Not all VORs are being taken off line— they are going to maintain the Minimum Operating Network (MON) that will insure a ground based nav capability for the foreseeable future.

I know VORs that have been defective for years. The CARMEL (CMK) VOR near Danbury, CT (DXR) immediately comes to mind.
Maybe it's time to dust off my sextant and start taking sun shots again.
:cornut:
 
With so many weapons systems dependent on GPS it was only a mater of time till low cost disruption of the signals, weapon systems do spill over into the normal use. If this progresses like laser hitting GA aircraft has done this may end or make a lot of GA GPS unusable. Sure glad I saved my ADF.
 
With so many weapons systems dependent on GPS it was only a mater of time till low cost disruption of the signals, weapon systems do spill over into the normal use. If this progresses like laser hitting GA aircraft has done this may end or make a lot of GA GPS unusable. Sure glad I saved my ADF.

Most US weapon systems, at least the ones I’ve been involved with, have SAASM M-code GPS receivers. This is more of a civilian concern.
 
Most US weapon systems, at least the ones I’ve been involved with, have SAASM M-code GPS receivers. This is more of a civilian concern.
It's not weapon systems only lots of truck drivers use it to disable their GPS tracking and others that want to disable any tracking device on their car or high value car if their going to steal it. Tracking devices are so common now, a cheap GPS jammer is required tool for the bad guy's. Seems like it's not illegal to buy a GPS jammer just illegal to use it, kind of like high power laser, not illegal to buy but illegal to point at aircraft and blind pilots.
 

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It's not weapon systems only lots of truck drivers use it to disable their GPS tracking and others that want to disable any tracking device on their car or high value car if their going to steal it. Tracking devices are so common now, a cheap GPS jammer is required tool for the bad guy's.

I doubt truck drivers are using SAASM M-Code receivers, unless they’re military trucks. Classified technology to circumvent spoofing.
 
Would it ever be viable to have a solid-state inertial reference system? Self-contained, not dependent in any radio signals. Cost aside, is it feasible? Has it been tried?
Sure. The trick will be to get them certified and integrated at a reasonable cost-weight. We had a mechanical INS in the EA-6B but the newer ring lasers are amazing.

The FFRDC company that I retired from has been doing a lot in the GPS reliability for years for the military and FAA and some of that tech can easily be transferred to the avionic industry. Some of it is as simple as better antennas to reject spurious signals at the front end and some logic in signals processing to do better validity checks. All it would take is the government telling them to publish those papers and designs.
 
Why would DME/DME systems not be a potential solution? As VORs are decommissioned, the DME component is often left active, to support DME/DME/IRU navigation, which is implemented in many FMSes in many different turbine airplanes.

Would the DME/DME portion (i.e. no IRU) be enough to support backup enroute navigation for light aircraft? I presume so.

Obviously this would take additional equipment on the aircraft, but so would an INS/IRU system. But the technology already exists for DME/DME positioning.
 
Has anyone done some sort of celestial navigation computer? I've always thought that would be an amusing use of a raspberry pi, but never researched it deeply enough.

Obviously no good in IMC or with high overcast :)
 
Great now that people have spent $100k on GPS avionics upgrade time to move on to the next great thing, low cost INS for GA.
 
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Reading this thread makes me wonder. What if someone spoofs my GPS and blinds me with a laser all at the same time? That would be a bad day.
 
If I’m on a LPV approach and spoofing is active, will the navigator alert me?
Will a RAIM check fail?
 
Reading this thread makes me wonder. What if someone spoofs my GPS and blinds me with a laser all at the same time? That would be a bad day.
Just wait 'til the EMP fries your IMU.



Nauga,
and countercountercountermeasures
 
If I’m on a LPV approach and spoofing is active, will the navigator alert me?
Will a RAIM check fail?
Good question. I wonder if the WAAS signal combined with spoofed GPS would generate an error or not.
 
VLF/Omega and Loran are both gone. Loran did not cost that much to keep broadcasting and was pretty accurate. By now everyone has removed the receivers, I know we did.
 
We can put the LORAN back in our plane, it was donated to the Collège Park MD aviation museum. Just ask for it back!
 
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