[Avionics Today 08-04-2014] General Dynamics received a new $25.4 million full-production contract from Lockheed Martin to support the U.S. Air Force Global Positioning System (GPS) III Network Communications Element (NCE) for space vehicles seven and eight (SV 07-08). The Air Force's next-generation GPS III satellites will improve position, navigation and timing services and provide advanced anti-jam capabilities, improving security, accuracy and reliability, according to the company.
General Dynamics’ NCE components provide the communications functions for the GPS III satellites, including the ground-to-space command and control channel, the space-to-space inter-satellite channel and the command and telemetry communications channels within each satellite. General Dynamics is currently under contract with Lockheed Martin for GPS III SV 01-08. Delivery of the NCE components for SV03 and SV04 are scheduled for this summer.
According to the aerospace and defense manufacturer, compared to prior GPS vehicles, the Air Force’s GPS III satellites will deliver three times better accuracy, provide up to eight times more powerful anti-jamming capabilities and include enhancements that extend spacecraft life 25 percent further. GPS III-series satellites also will carry a new civil signal designed to be interoperable with other international global navigation satellite systems, enhancing civilian-user connectivity.