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Spirent Federal launches alternative RF navigation simulator

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Spirent Federal has launched an alternative RF navigation simulator. As GPS jamming and spoofing continues to increase, interest in complementary sources of positioning, navigation and timing (PNT) data has also increased.

Recent government guidelines recommend a multi-source layered approach, with much of the attention focused on non-GNSS radio frequency signals. These RF signals, invented for alternative RF navigation, offer a unique PNT capability in degraded environments or denied by GPS. The signals are secure and resilient and can be an effective addition to GPS signals.

Spirent Federal’s product can simulate resilient alternative RF navigation signals alone or in conjunction with GNSS signals. Tests can be static or dynamic, with stationary paths, pedestrians, and ground vehicles available.

“Through our extensive research and development incorporating a variety of guaranteed PNT technologies, we are delighted to be the first to offer this capability to our customers,” said Roger Hart, Director of Engineering. “Our product allows developers to test early and often, from the early stages of R&D to integration and field testing. Solutions can be tested with peripheral boxes, hardened against interference, and deployed faster with greater confidence that they will work for our fighters.

Spirent is actively engaged with several alternative RF navigation technologies and technology providers to incorporate signal simulation capability. To learn more, contact Spirent Federal to discuss field configurations.

A United States Marine Corps radio operator conducts long-range HF radio training in Kuwait on October 7, 2020. (Photo: United States Marine Corps / Capt. Joshua Hays)

Collaboration with Xona Space Systems

Spirent Federal Systems also announced that it is working with Xona Space Systems to develop simulation and test capabilities for Xona signals produced by small satellites (smallsats) operating in low earth orbit (LEO). Xona is a San Mateo-based startup that is developing a constellation of small satellites for a dedicated PNT service.

Xona’s patent-pending approach using small satellites in LEO is intended to improve the overall resiliency and accuracy of PNT by improving GNSS and operating as an independent system. Xona’s high-power signals utilize advanced signal structure and security techniques, improving resistance to jamming and impersonation as well as multipath mitigation.

“We are doing everything we can to protect, strengthen and augment PNT and look forward to working with emerging companies like Xona who are developing a next-generation navigation and synchronization architecture,” said Jennifer Smith, Senior Director of Business Development at Spirent Federal. “Our simulators provide essential support to developers and integrators by enabling testing and validation before product deployment. “

The space and defense sectors also benefit from Spirent Federal’s expertise in generating high fidelity RF signals using quadrature (I / Q) data. Spirent test tools allow full customization of I / Q data. Customers can generate unique I / Q data corresponding to experimental modulation schemes and use Spirent Federal’s signal generation capabilities to create the corresponding RF. Such rapid prototyping allows for quick turnaround times and shorter iteration cycles.

Alternatively, scenarios created using Spirent Federal’s proprietary SimGEN software can be saved as I / Q data which can be processed by software-implemented receivers.

“Creating a new generation of satellite navigation and synchronization services goes far beyond satellites,” said Brian Manning, CEO of Xona Space Systems. “It requires building an entire ecosystem, from ground stations and chip makers to end users and system integrators. Having reliable and reliable simulation capabilities is essential to support all of these areas, which is why we are delighted to be working with Spirent to provide a robust solution for our partners.


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