The US Air Force’s (USAF) first Lockheed Martin-built space-based infrared system (SBIRS) geosynchronous (GEO-1) spacecraft has been successfully positioned in its intended orbit.

The USAF / Lockheed SBIRS team conducted a series of six liquid apogee engine (LAE) burns to propel the spacecraft to its geosynchronous orbital slot after the satellite was launched.

The satellite’s solar arrays, light shade and antenna wing assemblies were deployed for activating its infrared sensors and to begin early orbit testing.

SBIRS GEO-1 military infrared satellite will enhance early warning of missile launches around the globe, support the nation’s ballistic missile defence system and bolster battlefield situational awareness for warfighters.

The USAF SBIRS Space Command will operate the SBIRS system.