Lockheed Martin has transported the U.S. Air Force's fifth Advanced Extremely High Frequency communications satellite to the Cape Canaveral AF Station in Florida to begin preparations for a scheduled June launch.
AEHF-5's arrival at the launch site follows the completion of on-orbit AEHF-4 tests, which began in October of last year, Lockheed said Thursday.
The new satellite will employ an extended data rate technology and join an AEHF constellation intended to support high-bandwidth communications for U.S. military and allied forces worldwide.
“The AEHF system is essentially a high capacity data network in the sky and this is a complete paradigm shift for the future of protected communications,” said Mike Cacheiro, vice president of protected communications at Lockheed's space segment.
United Launch Alliance will provide its Atlas V rocket to send AEHF-5 into space.
Lockheed is manufacturing AEHF-6 at a satellite factory located in Sunnyvale, Calif.