The U.S. Air Force has received updated position, navigation and timing software from Lockheed Martin to help modernize the service's ground control system for GPS III satellites.
Lockheed said Tuesday its contingency operations software for the Air Force's GPS Architecture Evolution Plan Operational Control System will enable the service to manage the advanced satellites until the Block 1 Operational Control System development project is completed.
GPS III satellites are designed to be compatible with other navigation systems and have updated anti-jamming features, with the satellite's IIIF version slated to include search and rescue payloads, a laser retroflector array, digital navigation payloads and regional military protection.
Lockheed, which is tasked to produce a maximum of 32 GPS III and IIIF satellites, has delivered three of the satellites. The second GPS III scheduled for a July launch.
Johnathon Caldwell, vice president for navigation systems at Lockheed, said the company will integrate COps into the AEP OCS this summer and expects the software to begin operating the new GPS satellites later this year.
The company has maintained AEP OCS since 2013 and is under contract to further support the system through 2025.