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GPS IIF satellite set for launch May 20

US: The U.S. Air Force will launch the first Global Positioning System Block IIF satellite aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle from Space Launch Complex 37, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, on May 20, 2010. The launch window is 11:29-11:48 p.m. (EDT).

According to Airforce Times, the satellite has been built by a Boeing Company. Its design life is 12 years. It is equipped with faster processors, more memory and a new signal for civilian uses.

The GPS IIF system brings next-generation performance to the constellation. The GPS IIF vehicle is critical to U.S. national security and sustaining GPS constellation availability for global civil, commercial and defence applications. Besides sustaining the GPS constellation, IIF features increased capability and improved mission performance and longevity.

The first IIF will be the first GPS satellite to ride on the Delta IV launch vehicle. The launch will be the first following the 50th anniversary of the Delta Program, May 13. The launch can be viewed via Webcast at: https://www.ulalaunch.com

Source: Patrick Air Force Base