GPS III SV05 control transferred to 2 SOPS
The US Space Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) transferred Satellite Control Authority of the GPS III SV05 to the 2nd Space Operations Squadron at Schriever (2 SOPS) Air Force Base on June 28. Nicknamed Armstrong, the fifth GPS III satellite was launched into space on June 17.
GPS III SV05 received operational acceptance approval on June 29, making it the first GPS III SV to receive SCA handover and operational acceptance within 24 hours and decreasing the time from launch to on-orbit operational capability by a staggering 97%.
In 2020, the GPS enterprise launched two GPS III SVs in the midst of a global pandemic. According to Los Angeles Air Force Base, home of SMC, the delivery time from launch to operational acceptance approval has continued to shrink, with innovation and teamwork across the GPS enterprise enhancing rapid identification and elimination of redundant on-orbit verification steps.
Launch of SV05 was the first National Security Space Launch on a previously flown Falcon 9 booster, reusing the same booster that delivered GPS III SV04 to orbit in November 2020.
GPS III SV05 joins a constellation of 31 operational satellites. Colonel Heather J. Anderson, Transition Director, said that the inclusion of GPS III SV05 into the operational constellation marked another significant milestone for the enterprise with 24 M-code capable satellites.
Built by Lockheed Martin, GPS III SVs provide improved accuracy, advanced anti-jam capabilities, and increased resiliency for the GPS constellation and also for 4 billion end users worldwide.