The U.S. Air Force can continue its program to develop a new ground-based command system for the military branch’s GPS satellite constellation after Defense Department acquisition chief Frank Kendall certified the project to Congress, DoD News reported Friday.
The report said the magnitude of required information assurance effort, concurrent systems engineering activities, inconsistent baselines configuration management, a lack of automation and immature software were among the factors that led to program cost increases that breached the Nunn-McCurdy Act.
The OCX segment will comprise a master control station and an alternate master control station, dedicated monitor stations, ground antennas, GPS system simulator and a standardized space trainer.
“This is what the controllers on the ground are going to use to make sure that all the satellites are talking to each other, that they’re exchanging the same information [and] that they’re where they’re supposed to be,” said James MacStravic, acting assistant secretary of defense for acquisition.
The GPS Advanced Control Segment is designed to support launch, orbit insertion, checkout, anomaly resolution and disposal of GPS III, subsequent satellites and control legacy satellites.