New "Block lll" GPS Satellite Prototype Begins Testing
December 14, 2011 10:48 AM
comment(s) - last by
The prototype arrived at Lockheed Martin's testing facility on Monday
A Lockheed Martin-built prototype for the upcoming Global Positioning System (GPS) upgrade was recently completed and shipped to a facility in Colorado to begin testing.
The U.S. Air Force Space Command, which supervises the U.S.' GPS
from the Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado, is looking to launch a $5.5 billion update to the GPS. The upgrade is intended to make both military and civilian receivers more powerful and accurate, and to also allow civilian receivers to use signals from not only the U.S. satellite navigation systems, but European and Russian systems too.
The new GPS satellites are called Block lll, and the Pentagon plans to buy about 32 of them to launch into space at a cost of $5.5 billion. The U.S. government looked to Lockheed Martin to build and test the prototype in a $1.5 billion Air Force contract. The company will also build the first
for space launch and potentially 10 more.
The prototype made its way to Lockheed Martin's $80 million test facility in Colorado on Monday, where final assembly work and testing will take place.
Once completed, the Block lll satellites are expected to allow civilian and military users to identify their position within 3 feet as opposed to 10 feet with
current GPS technology
. The Block lll satellites will also make it more difficult for enemies to interfere with signals.
Such GPS systems are advantageous for car use or smartphone use to weapons use.
The prototype will never be launched into space, but the first Block lll model after the prototype will be sent to space in 2014 after undergoing testing next year.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: Arent Military and Civilian different?
12/14/2011 4:10:24 PM
This is not true. Since Selective Availability was turned off in 2000 the accuracy of civilian and military GPS is essentially the same.
The error sources come largely from ephemeris errors, time base errors, multipath errors, and atmospheric distortions in the ionosphere which is one of the largest error sources. The block 3 satellites will be using multiple frequency bands which allow you to measure the skew caused by the ionosphere and compensate out most of it.
"It seems as though my state-funded math degree has failed me. Let the lashings commence." -- DailyTech Editor-in-Chief Kristopher Kubicki
Did You Partake in "Black Friday/Thursday"?
Did You Partake in "Black Friday/Thursday"?
I skipped Thanksgiving to get the Black Thursday deals!
I spent Thanksgiving with friends/family, but I lined up at midnight for the deals!
Skip Thanksgiving? Wait in line? No way, but I'll go out today and see what's left.
I prefer Cyber Monday.
I don't do deal shopping... too much stress, it just isn't worth it.
Gov't Report Warns of Chinese Plans to Cripple U.S. Space Defenses
November 17, 2011, 7:13 PM
U.S. Suspects Chinese Involvement in Satellite Hacks; China Denies Accusations
October 31, 2011, 12:06 PM
Locata Develops Ground-based GPS Devices
August 2, 2011, 4:33 PM
Some Dark Side For Your Black Friday: Official Star Wars Ep. VII Trailer Lands
November 28, 2014, 1:02 PM
U.S. Air Force F-35 Lightning II, F-22 Raptor Team Up for “Integration Training”
November 19, 2014, 9:15 AM
U.S. Marshals Using Fake, Airplane-based Cell Towers to Scan Cell Phones of Americans
November 14, 2014, 9:05 AM
Ford Enlists Wind Energy Corp. to Provide Wind, Solar Energy to Four U.S. Dealerships
November 10, 2014, 10:58 AM
Disney Reveals Star Wars Ep. VII Title -- "The Force Awakens"
November 6, 2014, 3:45 PM
U.S. Navy Lockheed F-35C Completes First Carrier Landing
November 4, 2014, 12:44 PM
Most Popular Articles
Hack of Sony Pictures Indicates Employees Were Pirating Blu-Rays
November 25, 2014, 4:00 PM
Google Caves to Microsoft and Apple's Pet "Patent Troll" Rockstar
November 24, 2014, 3:30 PM
Some High-End Luxury Watchmakers Crack Down Hard on Smartwatch Faces
November 26, 2014, 1:28 AM
Report: Samsung Galaxy S5 Sales Have Come in 40% Below Projections
November 24, 2014, 6:58 AM
Xiaomi Aims to be #1 Smartphone OEM Within 10 Years, Apple Urges Caution
November 21, 2014, 9:33 AM
Latest Blog Posts
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information