Science and Technology News

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Fifth Wideband Global SATCOM Satellite Launched

/25/2013 - LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, El Segundo, California -- The U.S. Air Force's fifth Wideband Global SATCOM spacecraft (WGS-5) was successfully launched on a United Launch Alliance Delta IV launch vehicle at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., on May 24, the first step in its journey to expand satellite communications services to the warfighter.

Over the next several months, the satellite will undergo orbit-raising activities to reach geosynchronous orbit and on-orbit testing to verify nominal performance and prepare the satellite for operational use.  Ultimately, the satellite will be controlled by the U.S. Air Force's 3rd Space Operations Squadron at Schriever Air Force Base Colo. WGS-5 should enter operations by the end of 2013. 

"WGS continues to meet user requirements and provides the highest capacity of any DoD communications satellite," said Mr. Luke Scab, chief Wideband SATCOM division, MILSATCOM Systems directorate.  "WGS is a vital piece of the MILSATCOM enterprise consisting of WGS, Defense Satellite Communications System, Advanced Extremely High Frequency System, Minstar, and terminals providing diversified communications services to soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen around the world.  This continued success is due to the hard work and dedication from the combined government and industry team."

The Space and Missile Systems Center, located at Los Angeles Air Force Base, Calif., is the U.S. Air Force's center of acquisition excellence for acquiring and developing military space systems including Global Positioning System, military satellite communications, defense meteorological satellites, space launch and range systems, satellite control network, space based infrared systems, and space situational awareness capabilities.

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