Raytheon's global positioning system next generation operational control system (GPS OCX) launch and checkout system (LCS) has secured an interim authorisation to test (IATT) security certification from the US Government four months ahead of the original schedule.
Confirming the government's satisfaction with the system's design, the one-year IATT certification without liens enables the company to advance to the next stage of LCS testing in preparation for launch of the US Air Force's (USAF) first GPS III satellite.
Besides LCS, the certification also includes GPS III satellite support systems, including the exercise and rehearsal training tool and upload generation tool.
Raytheon GPS OCX programme manager and Intelligence, Information and Services business vice-president Matthew Gilligan said the successful IATT certification confirms both the company's ability to meet USAF's high standards for information assurance and the efficient efforts of its government partners.
"Typically IATT certification is given for six-month increments; the LCS one-year accreditation speaks to the quality of the information assurance design and threat protection," Gilligan said.
Being developed in two blocks using a commercial best practice iterative software development process as part of a February 2010 contract, OCX will facilitate launch, orbit insertion, checkout, anomaly resolution and disposal of GPS III satellites.
Block 1 and 2 feature seven and one iterations respectively.
Representing fifth iteration of Block 1, LCS has successfully completed critical design review (CDR) in June 2013.
Manufactured by Lockheed Martin, GPS III is a family of next-generation satellites designed to replace USAF's existing GPS constellation, which provides location and time information in all weather conditions.
The satellites will also be capable of delivering enhanced accuracy, navigation and timing services, and anti-jamming power to help address the evolving requirements of military, commercial and civilian users worldwide.
Currently under contract for production of the first four GPS III satellites, Lockheed has also secured advanced procurement funding for long-lead components for the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth satellites (SV 5-8).
Delivery of the first flight ready GPS III satellite is scheduled for 2014, for planned launch in 2015.
Image: An impression of USAF's GPS III satellite in orbit. Photo: courtesy of USAF.