Spirent expands Paignton’s high-tech research laboratories
New facilities opened today by Professor David Southwood, Chair of UK Space Agency targeting future applications, including autonomous vehicles and sensor fusion
PAIGNTON, UK, 9 January, 2018:plc (LSE:SPT), the world leader in GPS and other Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) testing solutions, today announced the opening of new research laboratories to develop systems to be used in future devices and applications.
The research space has been created to provide increased development capacity for test systems that can evaluate the performance of multiple sensors (sensor fusion) in new applications such as autonomous vehicles and emerging positioning techniques that use multiple signals such as Wi-Fi, RADAR, LIDAR and vision, in addition to GNSS.
“Very few people realize that many of the high-tech devices we use every day have been tested by systems from Spirent in Paignton” said Martin Foulger, General Manager of Spirent’s Positioning Business Unit. “Our systems are widely used to test smartphones, infotainment systems in cars, fitness bands, drones, and many more devices in addition to high-end applications such as aircraft and space vehicles. This expansion of our research facilities enables us to lead the development of test solutions for next-generation systems and maintain our global leadership position.”
“Seeing a company like Spirent working in space navigation, very much part of our future world, expanding its UK facilities is very exciting as the UK Space Agency works with industry to capture 10% of the global space market by 2030,” said David Southwood.
The new research laboratories were formally opened by Professor David Southwood, Chair of the UK Space Agency’s Steering Committee, and will increase total laboratory space at the Paignton facility by more than 50%.
As well as supporting next-generation research, the new laboratories will also enable the development of test systems to make GPS and other GNSS receivers more resilient to interference – a growing problem, especially as positioning, navigation and timing features are embedded in a myriad of applications.
“Over time the additional laboratory space will enable Spirent to recruit more staff and increase its contribution to the local community,” said Caroline Lee, Human Resources Director for Spirent. “The company is already very active in encouraging students to pursue STEM subjects – science, technology, engineering and mathematics, so the expanded facilities will help us to offer more opportunities in these areas.”
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The investment has been partially funded by the UK government Regional Growth Fund (RGF). Spirent’s Positioning Division was selected to accelerate its dedicated research and development into the vulnerability of GNSS and develop threat management technologies for deployment across many sectors.