Blog Editor’s Note: Another good article for the general public by our member Diana Furchtgott-Roth explaining a rather complex issue.
The timing services Hoptroff and others provide via fiber are part of what should be an essential timing backbone for every nation. Combined in an architecture with wireless services that can reach an infinite number of fixed and mobile users, they can provide the timing resilience needed for a nation to weather a wide variety of foreseeable and inevitable mishaps.
Mishaps the results of which, as our member Dr. Marc Weiss said in a television interview a couple weeks ago, will make the pandemic look like child’s play.
Four civilians are orbiting Earth in SpaceX’s Inspiration4, due to return to Florida on Saturday. The launch and its return rely on absolute accuracy to coordinate spaceship and rocket boosters.
Almost everyone believes that accurate time is with us forever. But with electromagnetic storms or man-made threats the clock on your iPhone could just disappear (“hacking”) or show the wrong time (“spoofing”). Unfriendly actors could spoof and hack time, the way they spoof and hack location, wreaking havoc with the economy.
Timing comes from a constellation of 31 satellites that provide Positioning, Navigation, and Timing services and the Global Positioning System (GPS).
Congress asked for the U.S. Department of Transportation to back up GPS in three separate bills, but so far has not provided the funds to do it. Now, as Members are debating a $1 trillion infrastructure bill, and a $3.5 trillion spending package, is the time to allocate these funds.