The U.S. Navy has moved forward in the process to take control of the Mobile User Objective System constellation’s fourth satellite after MUOS contractor Lockheed Martin completed a series of on-orbit tests Monday.
MUOS-4 is scheduled for transition to its on-orbit operational slot in the spring of 2016 prior to the satellite’s scheduled operational acceptance, Lockheed said Thursday.
“Mobile forces, equipped with MUOS terminals, will soon be able to communicate with each other – including voice, data and exchanging imagery – real-time, virtually anywhere on the Earth,” said Iris Bombelyn, vice president for narrowband communications at Lockheed.
MUOS-4 joins a network of satellites and relay ground stations designed to connect military forces with communications channels.
The constellation’s first three satellites respectively launched in 2012, 2013 and 2015 to form part of a future five-spacecraft group that will include one spare scheduled for transportation to space next year.