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Key Milestones Met In GPS III Satellite For Air Force

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Lockheed Martin Space Systems
: 20 April, 2010  (New Product)
Lockheed Martin has undergone critical design review phase for the Global Positioning System satellite being prepared for the US Air Force
Key Milestones Met In GPS III Satellite For Air Force
The Lockheed Martin team developing the US Air Force's next-generation Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite, known as GPS III, continues to maintain schedule performance and meet or exceed key milestones in the Critical Design Review (CDR) phase of the program.

To date, the team has successfully executed 26 of 65 GPS III CDRs, most recently completing individual CDRs for the satellite's power regulation unit, batteries, and space vehicle antenna assemblies. Preparations are now underway to conduct the TT&C, ACS and L2, L3 and L5 transmitter assembly CDRs this month. By the end of April, the team will have completed over 50 percent of the planned CDRs and is well on its path to conduct the overall space vehicle CDR in August -- two months ahead of the planned schedule. These rigorous CDR events demonstrate comprehensive designs and embody the core GPS III program focus on strong systems engineering and program management fundamentals.

GPS III will improve position, navigation and timing services and provide advanced anti-jam capabilities yielding superior system security, accuracy and reliability.

'The entire GPS III team continues to execute a disciplined and focused program review on-schedule as we strive to sustain and enhance GPS capabilities for military and civil users around the world,' said Colonel Dave Madden, US Air Force GPS Wing Commander. 'Our solid progress is the result of a strong government/industry partnership and I am confident the team will continue to meet all of its performance commitments.'

The new generation GPS IIIA satellites will deliver significant improvements over current GPS space vehicles, including a new international civil signal (L1C), and increased M-Code anti-jam power with full earth coverage for military users.

Lockheed Martin, Newtown, along with teammates ITT of Clifton and General Dynamics of Gilbert, is working on a $3 billion Development and Production contract awarded by the Global Positioning Systems Wing of the US Air Force Space and Missile Systems Centre, Los Angeles which includes production of up to 12 GPS IIIA satellites. The team is on track to launch the first GPS IIIA satellite in 2014.

'Steady advancement through this extensive pre-production phase speaks volumes of the progress the entire GPS team has made on this program since the contract was awarded less than 24 months ago,' said Don DeGryse, Lockheed Martin's vice president of Navigation Systems. 'We look forward to moving into integration and test on our pursuit to achieve mission success for active service personnel.'

The GPS constellation provides critical situational awareness and precision weapon guidance for the military and supports a wide range of civil, scientific and commercial functions -- from Air traffic control to the Internet -- with precision location and timing information. Air Force Space Command's 2nd Space Operations Squadron (2SOPS), based at Schriever Air Force Base manages and operates the GPS constellation for both civil and military users.
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