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Fate Of North American LORAN-C Radionavigation System To be Decided

By doina — last modified Jan 16, 2007 12:09 PM

Published: 2007-01-16 12:09:28
Topics: Communications
Countries: USA

The US Department of Transportation in coordination with the Department of Homeland Security is considering the need to continue to operate or invest in the North American LORAN–C Radionavigation System beyond fiscal year 2007. Future investment decisions might include: Decommissioning the LORAN–C system, maintaining the LORAN–C system as currently configured, or developing a fully deployed Enhanced LORAN (eLORAN) system.

Contributing factors to these decisions are:

(1) whether the GPS and other available back-up systems are adequate for the public’s navigation and timing needs, thus making the LORAN–C system redundant

(2) whether the eLORAN investments made to date provide enhancements that now merit consideration as a complementary capability to GPS, and not merely as a GPS back-up.

The Department of Transportation and the Department of Homeland Security seek public input on the various decisions currently under consideration. For more information on LORAN, you may visit http://www.navcen.uscg.gov

Comments and related material must reach the Docket Management Facility on or before February 7, 2007. You may submit comments identified by Coast Guard docket number USCG–2006–24685 to the Docket Management Facility at the U.S. Department of Transportation. To avoid duplication, please use only one of the following methods:

(1) Web Site: http://dms.dot.gov

(2) Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590–0001.

(3) Fax: 202–493–2251.

(4) Delivery: Room PL–401 on the Plaza level of the Nassif Building, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The telephone number is 202–366– 9329.

All comments received will be posted, without change, to http://dms.dot.gov

and will include any personal information you have provided.

The North American LORAN–C system is a low frequency hyperbolic radionavigation system. It is approved for use in the U.S. Coastal Confluence Zone (CCZ) and as a supplemental air navigation aid. While the current LORAN–C system is based on technology developed in the 1960’s, a portion of the stations have been updated to allow for an enhanced signal (Enhanced LORAN) once the entire system is upgraded. More information about Enhanced LORAN (eLORAN) is available at: http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/loran/9th-pulsemodulation- ldc.html ldc.html

Although eLORAN would improve both the accuracy and reliability of LORAN transmissions, and provide a precise timing service, further capital investment would be required before such a system would be fully operational.

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