Lockheed Martin‘s new new breed of GPS satellite have been designed to be backward-compatible with the existing GPS satellite constellation in orbit.
The company aims for the GPS III satellites to send and receive information with the existing GPS constellation, Lockheed said Thursday.
During a series of Oct. 17 tests at Cape Canaveral, a U.S. Air Force receiver worked to track the navigation signals transmitted by a GNST satellite.
“These tests represent the first time when the GNST’s flight-like hardware has communicated with flight-like hardware from the rest of the GPS constellation and with a navigation receiver,” said Paul Miller, Lockheed’s director for GPS III development.
Lockheed is under contract from the Air Force to produce the first four GPS III satellites and also received advanced procurement funding for components for GPS III satellites five through eight.