GPS IIF Satellite Launched

The Air Force and its industry partners launched the latest Boeing-built GPS IIF navigation satellite into orbit on Wednesday from Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla. A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket carried the GPS satellite, the fourth in the IIF series, aloft at 5:28 p.m. US East Coast time on May 15, according to the Facebook page of the 45th Space Wing that oversaw the launch. This mission marked the first time that an Atlas V has placed a GPS satellite in space, according to the wing. The satellite is meant to join the constellation of some 30 GPS operational spacecraft that provides precision positioning, navigation, and timing functions to the US military and commercial and civil users worldwide. The first GPS IIF satellite began operations in August 2010. The IIF model is designed for greater navigational accuracy, a more secure and jam-resistant military signal, and a more robust civil signal. The launch of the third IIF spacecraft took place last October.