Business

September 5, 2012

Lockheed Martin, Raytheon complete first launch exercise for next gen GPS satellites

Raytheon and Lockheed Martin have successfully completed the first launch readiness exercise for the U.S. Air Force’s next generation GPS III satellites.
The exercise is a key milestone demonstrating the team remains on schedule to achieve launch availability in 2014.

The Lockheed Martin-built GPS III satellites and the Raytheon-developed next generation GPS operational control system, known as OCX, are critical elements of the U.S. Air Force’s effort to affordably replace aging GPS satellites while improving capability to meet the evolving demands of military, commercial and civilian users worldwide. This is the first space and ground enterprise successfully building the ground control and space vehicles by two independent prime contractors.

The launch readiness exercise, completed over a three day period by mission operations personnel, validated the basic satellite command and control functions, tested the software and hardware interfaces and demonstrated basic on-console procedures required for space vehicle contacts during the launch and early orbit mission. The event sets the stage for the first GPS III satellite’s mission readiness timeline, which includes five short-duration exercises and six, five day mission rehearsals leading up to launch.

“Completion of our first GPS III launch readiness exercise is a major milestone for the entire GPS enterprise and is a solid indictor that our space and ground segments are well synchronized,” said Col Bernie Gruber, the director of the U.S. Air Force’s Global Positioning Systems Directorate.

To achieve first launch availability in the 2014 timeframe, the U.S. Air Force awarded Lockheed Martin and Raytheon contracts in January of this year to provide a Launch and Checkout Capability (LCC) for launch and early on-orbit testing of all GPS III satellites. At the heart of the LCC is Raytheon’s Launch and Checkout System that will provide satellite command and control capability, an integral part of OCX’s support of the first GPS III launch.

“The completion of our first launch readiness exercise is an important milestone for the entire GPS enterprise,” said Keoki Jackson, vice president of Lockheed Martin’s Navigation Systems mission area. “This achievement is a testament to efficient planning and synchronization by the U.S. Air Force and demonstrates that we are on track to deliver critical GPS III capabilities to military, commercial and civilian users worldwide.”

“This milestone represents the hard work and dedication of the entire GPS III and OCX government-industry team,” stated Ray Kolibaba, a vice president of Raytheon’s Intelligence and Information Systems business and GPS OCX program manager. “This is another demonstration of the rapid progress we’re making on OCX development, while maintaining GPS space-ground enterprise alignment. I’m confident that we’ll be prepared to support the first GPS III launch with an efficient, evolvable and secure ground control system built independently.”

The GPS III team is led by the Global Positioning Systems Directorate at the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center. Air Force Space Command, based at Schriever Air Force Base, Colo., manages and operates the GPS constellation for both civil and military users.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines April 18, 2014

Business: Lockheed to Lose 17 F-35s Under Automatic Pentagon Cuts - Pentagon will cut 17 of the 343 F-35 fighters it planned to buy from Lockheed Martin in fiscal 2016 through 2019 unless Congress repeals automatic budget cuts, according to a new Defense Department report. DOD looking for ways not to break MH-60R helo deal - The...
 
 

News Briefs April 18, 2013

U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan at 2,177 As of April 15, 2014, at least 2,177 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan as a result of the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to an Associated Press count. At least 1,802 military service members have died in Afghanistan as a result...
 
 
LM-F35-hours

F-35 fleet surpasses 15,000 flying hours

The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II fleet recently surpassed 15,000 flight hours, marking a major milestone for the program.  “Flying 15,000 hours itself demonstrates that the program is maturing, but what I think is e...
 

 
nasa-cassini

NASA Cassini images may reveal birth of new Saturn moon

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has documented the formation of a small icy object within the rings of Saturn that may be a new moon, and may also provide clues to the formation of the planet’s known moons. Images taken w...
 
 

NASA completes LADEE mission with planned impact on Moon’s surface

Ground controllers at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., have confirmed that NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer spacecraft impacted the surface of the moon, as planned, between 9:30 and 10:22 p.m., PDT, April 17. LADEE lacked fuel to maintain a long-term lunar orbit or continue science operations and was intentionally sent...
 
 
Photograph courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s Kepler telescope discovers first Earth-size planet in ‘habitable zone’

Photograph courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech Kepler-186f resides in the Kepler-186 system about 500 light-years from Earth in the constellation Cygnus. The system is also home to four inner planets, seen lined up...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>