Spectracom Assures GPS Integrity with Leap Second Testing Tools

Spectracom Assures GPS Integrity with Leap Second Testing Tools


Spectracom, a company of the Orolia Group (NYSE Alternext Paris – FR0010501015 – ALORO) and the leading provider of practical test solutions for GPS and GNSS devices and systems, has published its Application Note: Leap Second Testing Made Easy in response to the recent announcement of a pending leap second. The last leap second occurred at the end of 2008. This will be the first mid-year leap second in 16 years.


No doubt most fielded GPS receivers have never experienced a leap second and virtually none would have seen a mid-year leap second. This underscores the need to test critical GPS applications in advance of the leap second event to validate performance and uncover any impact of the leap second discontinuity.

The only way to test GPS devices in advance of the leap second is by simulation. Spectracom’s GPS/GNSS constellation simulators offer the easiest way to test a leap second. Simply set the leap second parameter “on” through any of the user interfaces (front panel, web interface, scenario configuration software) and run a scenario through UTC midnight on June 30, 2012. The application note describes the test protocol. Spectracom also offers its customers a sample test scenario as download from its web site.

According to John Fischer, Spectracom’s CTO, “We understand leap second is one of a multitude of scenario parameters that an integrator of a GPS receiver must take into account when designing and testing a system. That’s why we offer RF signal generators for fast and easy testing of virtually any condition to validate the performance in development and manufacturing.” Mr. Fischer continues, “With our strong background with precision timing systems, Spectracom is uniquely suited to support the GPS community with leap second testing tools.”

Spectracom, www.spectracomcorp.com.

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