EL SEGUNDO, Calif., July 14, 2011 -- Boeing [NYSE: BA] announced today that the second of 12 GPS IIF satellites it is building for the U.S. Air Force has successfully completed prelaunch testing. GPS IIF-2 is ready for launch on July 15 aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta IV vehicle from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. (UPDATE at 8:40 p.m. Eastern time: Launch has been rescheduled for July 16 due to unfavorable weather that prevented the launch team from rolling the Mobile Service Tower away from the vehicle. The opening of the new 19-minute launch window is 2:41 a.m. Eastern time.)
"Nearly every piece of military equipment uses GPS precision timing and navigation capabilities to perform its missions more safely and effectively," said Air Force Col. Bernard Gruber, director of the GPS Directorate. "Because of the GPS IIF satellites and stewardship of the entire GPS constellation, performance will be improved, resulting in continuing mission success."
GPS is a space-based, worldwide navigation system providing users with highly accurate, three-dimensional position, velocity and timing information 24 hours a day in all weather conditions. The GPS IIF satellites' new and enhanced capabilities include improved anti-jam performance for warfighters and improved security for all users.
"Boeing, in close partnership with the Air Force, is focused on execution and mission assurance and is committed to the success of GPS IIF," said Craig Cooning, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space & Intelligence Systems. "We completed a robust test program and compatibility testing with the Operational Control Segment ground system to ensure that the GPS IIF-2 satellite is ready for launch. Boeing satellites will form the core of the GPS system for many years to come."
Boeing built and tested the GPS IIF-2 spacecraft at its Satellite Development Center in El Segundo. After arriving at Cape Canaveral on April 20, the satellite was moved into a processing facility to complete a series of prelaunch tests that validated the satellite's operational readiness, including its ability to communicate with the ground control segment and launch site. GPS IIF-2 will be controlled for the launch by the Boeing-built Operational Control Segment, which gained full operational acceptance with the Air Force in April.
When operational, GPS IIF-2 will join SVN-62 (formerly GPS IIF-1), which entered service with the Air Force on Aug. 26 after launching from Cape Canaveral on May 27, 2010. SVN-62 is demonstrating the best accuracy performance to date of any GPS satellite.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is one of the world's largest defense, space and security businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions, and the world's largest and most versatile manufacturer of military aircraft. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is a $32 billion business with 65,000 employees worldwide. Follow us on Twitter: @BoeingDefense.
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More information on the GPS IIF program is available on Boeing's online media kit at www.boeing.com/bds/mediakit/2011/gpslaunch.
Space & Intelligence Systems
Space & Intelligence Systems