Waltham, MA-based Raytheon announced July 29 that it has installed the first operational hardware for the Global Positioning System’s Next Generation Operational Control System, known as GPS OCX. The new ground command and control system will significantly modernize U.S. GPS capabilities and manage the next generation of GPS satellites. Installation of the Launch and Checkout System (LCS) hardware was completed in early July at Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado, the eventual home for the new GPS OCX Master Control Station.
“Installation of the initial OCX hardware at Schriever AFB represents a key milestone for the program, demonstrating further progress toward next year’s acceptance of the OCX Launch and Checkout System for the GPS III satellites,” said Matt Gilligan, vice president of Navigation and Environmental Solutions at Raytheon Intelligence, Information and Services. “Raytheon is committed to delivering a modernized, secure GPS ground system to support the millions of U.S. military, civil and commercial users of GPS worldwide,” added Gilligan.
GPS OCX will deliver a host of new capabilities, including automation for operational efficiencies, improved accuracy, interoperability with geo-positioning and navigation systems of other nations for better global coverage, and a cybersecurity architecture that provides unprecedented levels of protection. The Launch and Checkout System delivers a large subset of the full OCX ground system capabilities, and establishes the OCX cyber-hardened infrastructure for additional mission applications that will be added to complete the Block 1 capability.
U.S. warfighters use GPS services to support air, land, sea and space missions. GPS is also used by millions of people to enhance daily life activities, including personal navigation. It’s also required for industry and businesses and is essential to support safety-of-life missions for air traffic controllers and emergency responders. The modernized ground system will bring new capabilities and precision to the GPS enterprise.