Knowledge: GPS jamming, spoofing, blocking and spamming is an ongoing problem it is worth knowing about.
What’s the problem?
GPS jamming can cause issues with important aircraft systems and performance:
- Navigation system issues leading to reduce nav standards, potential airspace infringements or route deviations
- Loss of capability for RNAV (GNSS) or RNP based approaches
- Inconsistent position leading to potential terrain warnings
- Degradation of system using GNSS time reference
Where’s the problem
There are two main ‘reasons’ for the problem occurring – military tests and conflict zones.
The USA military test GPS jamming equipment on a regular basis. They issue:
- NOTAMs (ARTCC)
- Flight Advisories
- AOPA has published articles and guides
- The FAA have a dedicated site for reporting
GPS jamming due conflict zones if a larger issue because it may occur in unexpected regions, and pre-warning of jamming events is unlikely.
The regions where most jamming is reported and monitored are:
- The Black Sea area:
- LTBB/Istanbul, LTAA/Ankara
- LRBB/Bucharest (eastern), LBSR/Sofia
- UGGG/Tbilisi UGGG, UDDD/Yerevan UDDD, UBBA/Baku
- The southeastern Mediterranean area, Middle East:
- LCCC/Nicosia, OLBB/Beirut, OSTT/Damascus, LLLL/Tel Aviv, OJAC/Amman, HECC/Cairo (North Eastern)
- ORBB/Baghdad (northern), OIIX/Tehran (Northwestern)
- HLLL/Tripoli (northern)
- The Baltic Sea area (FIRs surrounding FIR Kaliningrad UMKK):
- EYVL/Vilnius (western), EPWW/Warszawa (northeastern), EVRR/Riga (southwestern)
- Arctic area:
- EFIN/Helsinki (northern), ENOR/Polaris (northern)
What’s the fix?
Aside from avoiding routing through known areas, there are some things crew can do to mitigate or minimise the impact:
- Report: Report degradations to ATC
- File: AIREPs and reports with your operator
- Plan and Prepare: Ensure you have a backup plan if RNAV approaches might be unavailable due degraded system
- Monitor: Know what to look for to see if you are being jammed, and what to check for to see if systems are affected. Regularly check the capability of your systems and navigation performance
- MEL: Consider your dispatch limitations and considerations if flying through an area of known jamming to ensure your alternative plans won’t be impacted
It is the current information from EASA and it is very, very helpful!