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North Korea Jamming GPS in the South…again

April 1, 2016

South Korean officials have reported that their neighbors to the north are, once again, jamming GPS signals, according to an item in the New York Times. The report says that the jamming is weaker than in previous events and that air and ship traffic and telecommunications systems have not been impacted.

It may well also be that, as a result of several previous jamming events by the North, South Koreans have taken additional precautions.  These could include upgrading GPS receivers, improving backup clocks, and increasing the use of their terrestrial Loran-C system alongside GPS. All would help ensure timing and navigation services remain uninterrupted during jamming incidents.

Loran is particularly useful during GPS jamming events that use high power transmitters or that last for extended periods. South Korea has an active program to upgrade its Loran-C system to the eLoran standard to make it more precise and even more difficult to disrupt.

North Korea has never attempted to disrupt the Loran systems operated by Russia, China, South Korea and Japan.